Sunday, May 25, 2014

Another Old Saw

PHOTOGRAPHER’S JOURNAL: - Photographers’ Voice, Part 2

For most of my life I photographed things. I photographed as a traveler to remember my travels, and I photographed friends to remember our times together. I photographed as a student of architecture to study a site and a neighborhood. I photographed as a reporter to document events I thought mattered. When I retired I stopped photographing things, and then people said “Oh, you’re an Art Photographer.”  

Art photographer! It’s a term I dislike because it suggests that my pictures are aimed at audience who possess an occult knowledge that allows them to unlock secrets the rest do not see. To the extent there are secrets, I think they are only unlocked by looking and doing, and there are no authorities, but that’s another discussion. For others, it is a term for things that are decorative. I freely admit my photographs are a self-indulgence especially in a world overwhelmed with photographers and photographs; that there are too few people to look at all the photos being shot, but my aim is not decorative. My only answer is that photography is an addiction that gives me pleasure and harms no one, and that in my wanderings I occasionally stumble on images that seem to move others, that I’ve done it long enough that maybe, sometimes I see things others miss, but mostly I’m dogged in my wanderings, both at home while processing, and abroad while shooting. 

If I don’t photograph things, what do I photograph? It’s a reasonable question. I photograph what catches my eye, and sometimes I see what I feel. So it’s really my eye I hope you feel when you look at my photographs. And why should you care to feel my eye? All I can say is it’s different, which is a truism. A few days after I took this photograph of the old saw, it was packed up and shipped to another country, but I didn’t photograph in order to remember it when it was gone. No, it was something else I saw, a pathway for my eye, cheery colors, textures, forms; the timbre and pitch of the light, the passage of time; qualities that resonated inside me as I shot and processed.

Be sire to click and view it large.