"They are addressing the nature of things as opposed to the thing itself."
Yes, I agree this is the way to do it. Now, if I could just Do it myself.
Portraits? Take a look at Karsch's; Eisenhower and Churchill come to mind. Now there's DETERMINATION and bright intellect in those faces. You can FEEL it. Einstein comes off as the intellectual he was; rumpled, kind, thoughtful. But he doesn't have the soldier's determination of the other two; he never was a soldier. How did Karsch get these subtleties on film?
I recently saw an Adams that I really liked; Mt Williamson. A good use of backlighting and geometry. I think most people are attracted to it just because of the 16x20 size. Would it be so popular if it was confined to an 8x10 print?
The longer I stay in photography, the more I see that Adams missed.
Same here. I used to like looking at Clyde Butcher's book and website now all I FEEL is sloppy exposure, development and printing. One I used to neglect is one I now keep on looking at - Jay Dusard. Simply elegant. I feel that Jay Dusard cares for his photographs.
Jay Dusard is my inspiration also. He is without a doubt one of the best imagemakers I have seen.
I think there are other levels of photographic expression not mentioned here. I photograph based on my emotions, meaning if it moves me in every way I try to capture it. Because of this I'm able to leave a collection of images behind that in a way show the world who I was. I don't usually set out to tell a story, ask questions, or explore objects. I simply set out to find things that move all of my emotions at once, if it can do that, then to me it's a winner. I've always felt like that is how AA photographed. When looking at many of his images I can imagine him behind the camera flooded with emotion, it's like I can almost feel what he felt at that very moment. Maybe there needs to be a new word to describe that feeling when all of your emotions ignite at once? That's the magic moment in my photography. Sort of hard to put to words.
*Very* close to the way I work, Sean.
Originally Posted by Sean
I think the most profound statement I've seen in a while is here:
"Because of this I'm able to leave a collection of images behind that in a way show who I was".
Well said. I cannot hope for more in my work.
Ed Sukach, FFP.
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I like what you have said here a great deal. Perhaps what the comments you mention may be interpreted as is "I relate to the photo." For a photographer that would seem to be a compliment of the highest magnitude.
Originally Posted by bjorke
It is interesting that Ralph Gibson has said what seems to be the same thing that I understood Paula Chamlee to say in her interview in B&W magazine. I quote from that publication.
" Although I view things on the ground glass as if they were abstractions, I'm always drawn first by something very recognizable and specific before I set up my camera," explains Chamlee. "My photographs are on a fine line between recognizable subject matter and total abstraction. Usually I am looking at and responding to the tonal arrangements of things. For me the photograph must reach beyond depicting reality of subject matter and touch a resonant chord through it's abstracted arrangement of space and form".
It is interesting that as I become more aware the same message consistantly seems to be delivered from many different sources.
Don and company, I wish I had time right now to pipe in on this one. The best thread we 've had in a while. As a painter and a fine art photgrapher, The two mediums have flushed out one common denoniminater for me that I was slow to learn. Every concept has an education hidden within it about the world being created. each image has things to teach and understand before they make sense enough to complete. This I think is what creates the residual mystery for both the creater and the veiwer. From different perspectives of course but the same none the less. I hope this thread is still going in a couple days so I can join in but for now it's back to work.
Stop trying to get into my mind, There is nothing there!
All great photographs have aspects of both the particular and the universal. One can only photgraph particulars, not universals. but if there is not a universal resonance, the photograph is only about the thing photographed and does not resonate with those not familiar with that specific subject matter. It is the universal resonance through the particular that is why the viewer relates strongly to it. True for all subject matter, subjects included.
Now for makers: how do you get that universal in there when you are only photographing something particular? You see space, as well as the things you are photographing. (With portraits, you also see expression, but if the space is not right, you won't get it.)
Space has to do with the relationship of everything in the photogaph to everything else.
read my two last posts here, im talking about the conection about the singular and universal. u dont have to photograph universal. they have no ontological existance (not in my opinion) so u cannot see them. universals are our mental creation whenever we think. if be percept something - that is singular, but if we "think about it, talk about it than we relate to those singulars in terms of universals. there is no other way to think but by the universals (properties, generalizations etc etc.). wehn u see the expression of human for example... what do i see... only the expression. i see the person, i sense the atmospher, but than u call it "happy" "sad" "paasionate" etc etc, u difine it by the universals. if some person is "sad" for example, u cannot feel his sadness. u recognize it by the physiology, and then by realte it to "sadness" upon your expiriance in life. from here u only can asosiate that sadness with something from your memory wether with particular memory of yours or some memory of that sense. the sense "of sadness" it can rize itself to and then u can feel some compation or solidarity etc. the conection of the singularity and universal is an mental act. when we see the singular case by image or by verbal story etc, this mental act is a part of our imidiate interpretation.
in reality, we behave this way (the mental behaviour of linking singular to universal) so naturally that we hardly can distinguish between them. we are not normally conscious with this behaviour itself. normally, we are conscious of what we think and not how we think.
“Question or answer?” That is the question. Whether ‘tis nobler to present enriching information to a viewer or display an image requiring the observer to make their own interpretation? Hmm….
Some personal details follow – skip if you please. I love a mystery. My former life was devoted to the solving of puzzles of various types. Most involved concentrated effort, but were non the less gratifying. I suppose that is why I attempt to convey some sense of mystery in my prints.
Prints that bring questions to my mind seem the more interesting to me personally. “What is in those black shadows?” “What is around the corner?” When will the storm overtake the artist” “What is ‘for dinner’ in that house on the hill with the light burning in the window?” “What is the model thinking?” “What will that mischievous child do after the shutter closes?”
Yes, I am definitely entrenched in the “question” camp.
I love the smell of fixer in the morning. It smells like...creativity!
Truly, dr bob.