I used to play pretty much anything that took breath to make it work from recorder and tin whistle up to tenor horn and trombone (no good with strings or keys). I even got a tune out of an aquarium air pump once! Currently I fool around with a couple of harmonicas, although I'm not all that good.
Of course, I'm not exactly a world-class photographer either. Draw your own conclusions...!
Joe, what the hell were you doing at the walls at Huntsville? For those who don't know that is where the maximum security prison and death chamber are located in Texas.
I was listening to classical today while working in the darkroom.
I was almost a musician before I was a photographer--recorder (played in a recorder consort), clarinet (played in an local orchestra), and now I play and compose music on the hammered dulcimer.
Music has been a big influence on my work. First musical influence was the music of Hindemith and Bartok. In 1971 and 1972 the complexity of their music was a major influence on my work becoming more complex.
And then in 1978 I came across sonograms of bird songs and thet directly influenced the way I saw the world. Some of my photographs from this time, if you squint at them, look pretty much like the sonograms. I kind of liked the idea of making photographs as beautiful as a bird song.
These influences have stayed with me right up to the present and, while not in every picture (because new influences have been added to the mix), they can be readily seen not infrequently.
I've played the recorder, clarinet and dabbled in the piano. The former two by instruction, and the latter I learned on my own accord, playing mainly by ear. I was actually quite good, but then stopped when I went to college. I havn't touched an instrument since. I usually always have to have some sort of creative outlet. It was music in HS, then graphic arts in college. Photography was always there, but not really taken up seriously until I graduated college...it has been with me ever since.
Greetings and salutations,
Just want to add a few thoughts to the conversation. First of all, while I am a visual artist, I opt for seeing music is not the same as visual art. The areas of the brain that apply to visual modalities would not apply across the board to all art. In addition, I think we lose something of real value if we work with the assumption that visual art covers the territory, or that visual art is somehow primary.
My point here is that a musician does not "use" his mental imagery the same as a visual artist, or as a sculptor. Musicians think in notes, sounds, music structures, etc. Sculptors think in regards to touch, texture, and the like. etc. The photographer thinks in regards of control of image shape, sharpness, perspective, and depth of field, etc. The inherent training for each of these art discipline force one to entrain and condition one's mind accordingly. I have met musicians that could not notice any shade of a particular color on a photograph, let alone a difference in luminocity. However, will notice a note played by a piccolo in a symphony orchestra, while the opposite for a photographer will be the case. He might love music, but might not be able to make sense of the harmonic or contrapuntal structure of the piece.
We train our mind to respond accordingly to our interest and I should say focal interest. We attend to what gives us the best aesthetic "pleasure" and experience, ignoring and even denigrating other things
Many similarities between composing music and composing "art" could be inferred -Rhythm, Repetition, Unity, Mood, Movement, Use of Positive/Negative Space, etc... The creative process.
p.s. I play hand drums and guitar … music stimulates the creative process …
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Yes, I have heard and realized the continuity between photographic art and music. You might say I am a "professional" singer. I recently acquired the tenor soloist for the performances (3) of Handle's "Messiah" this year with the Eastern Shore Symphony. This will be my first experience with this organization. Actually this is _not_ my favorite piece of music to perform. I much prefer something (anything) by Mozart or Puccini I listen to a lot of stuff including the Beatles, ZZ-Top, and Kenton (used to play trombone in a ‘40s style jazz band). I have pretty set ideas of what is and what is not "good" music. I have _no_ idea of what makes a "good" photograph....
Music - specifically twentieth century piano and string quartets - is probably the biggest single influence on my photography.
You are probably familiar with it already, but Messiaen's music is largely a response to bird song and colour - in particular the magnificent Catalogue d'Oiseaux. On the surface a literal representation of nature, this music is actually a profound imaginative transformation of a remembered scene - there are clearly strong parallels to certain approaches to photography.
Originally Posted by Michael A. Smith
Posted: 29 Oct 2003 13:49 Post subject:
David Hedley wrote: Music - specifically twentieth century piano and string quartets - is probably the biggest single influence on my photography.
David, as I read it, I thought you were quoting me from earlier writing I had done. It could have been my writing. Besides Bartok and Hindemith, who were my first twentieth century influences, I have been especially influenced by twentieth century French music--piano and string quartets. And it was the quartets of Bartok and the chamber music of Hindemith that got to me--not the "bigger" works.
Lee - Sorry this thread got away from me, otherwise I would have responded sooner. Don't know if they still do it down at Huntsville, but every fall there was the Texas Prison Rodeo. All contestants (men and women) are inmates. Between some of the events Red sang some songs.
Pretty good rodeo, really good music.
The big event was called the "Hard Money Event." A Bull Durham Tobacco sack was filled with money and suspended between a Bull's horns. Any prisoner who wished to was allowed to don a red shirt, walk up to the Bull and take the money from the Bull.
This is not off topic, but very tangential...
yes, I believe that they still have the Prison Rodeo. I know about the Bull Durham sack with maybe $300 in it. Lunacy, put hey they are criminals. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to be a criminal. Ah the crimianal mind.
now it is off topic!