November 22, 2013

Françoise Weeks

Music | Cult of Personality by Living Colour

It is great enough to have a muse or 2 to have available when inspiration hits. It is also great when a fellow artist spurs on inspiration and you create art together. I think I have worked with Françoise Weeks 4 times now. Each and every time, I know I have something to add to the special box of work that will speak over and over, loudly to an audience over a long period of time.

This last shoot we did was short notice. We usually have weeks and weeks in advance to think, decide and go over what the plan is going to be. Funny thing is, we usually keep to ourselves and allow the thought process to put it all together. At most, we come up with a theme, maybe mention a colour and go with that... Maybe a few pictures to pass on between us, then go! It is what I love most about working with Françoise. We allow each other the freedom because we know in the end, the result will be what it will be... It isn't to say we have no expectations, but we know the effort put into the arrangement will be interesting and sometimes beautiful.


and from Françoise's blog...

A Reprise | Of Beauty and a Rant...

Music | Thighs High by Tom Browne

A thought provoking reply was sent to me which tried to console some of my conflicts of my previous blog entry. Her biggest and obvious point was that there are no answers to some questions... My response...

You've managed to state the obvious, that there are no answers to some questions. Sometimes it is true, you can't see the forest for the trees... I've managed to relieve a lot of stress by not lingering on the things that bother me that I have no control over or merely try to guide. It is amazing how light my shoulders became when I came to that conclusion.

The problem with art, however is that it is so entangled with me that my questions arise everytime I get on the computer, go thru a magazine, look at the side of a bus... or watch tv and even listen to the radio...

Was life as an artist more simple when the world wasn't driven by constant visual media? I always thought how wonderful it would be to live in Paris in the 20's. I think now how great it would be to be in Europe during the Impressionism era, which wasn't too far off when Wet Plate Collodion was discovered!

In the end... we only have the present. I know... "Deal with it, and shut the fuck up!" :-)

November 19, 2013

Of Beauty and a Rant...

Music | Butterflies by Floetry

I'm all about wanting to capture Beauty. The idea of being able to seize in an image, something that pleasures the mind, to steer an emotion is quite powerful to me. I'm hoping to create not the romantic notion of where fads and pop music comes from. What comes easy certainly moves on easy. And with the vast number of photographic images being created on a daily basis, being able to create a lasting image seems to be more, less and less a priority. Our world is so into the now and not at all about history, which in fact is what photography is all about... Capturing a moment in time and keeping it there - holding on to history... In comparison to drawing and painting, photography is still nothing more than a fetus. I wonder what photography will be like 100 years from now?

With all of the photos we are taking now, making the mundane substantial, grabbing a created facial expression to convey... something, making reality more unrealistic, what direction does one go to photograph something of meaning? I know I get lost in snapping away with my camera phone. Taking a photo is now so accessible.

We all have a right to call what we do photography. Are the lines now blurred so much that snapshots and art no longer exist? I know I have my reasons to do what I do, some blurred and some more focused. I guess if I think too hard about it, I'll stop shooting all together. But like everyone else who shoots, I do so because I want to and in many ways, have to. My search for beauty continues on...

Cain with Floral Head Piece, courtesy of Françoise Weeks">

November 08, 2013


Music | Natale's Song by Sia

In a rather bold move, since having gone thru my mistrials with the ever evolving process called Wet Plate Collodion, I decided to shoot on glass, instead of the trophy aluminum that I have been using from the very start. I found it to be more difficult because of the surface tension of the two materials are so different. The glass of course is a much faster. It is also much heavier and more difficult to maneuver. As I was making my pours, I know my focus was more intense, not just because this was all new to me, but also, I could make a big mess by dropping the glass. With all of the detriment involved, I can see the allure of working with this medium over the aluminum.

As I said, I am much more in tune with the process. Fragility is a big influence of becoming more connected with every move you make while the glass is in the hands. As slow as this process is - I shoot maybe 3 plates per hour, the glass makes me feel I need to move even slower. In these days where everything we deal with and expect in daily life is instant, I love going against the grain.

More importantly than any of that, the final image on a glass plate has even more voodoo going on. Being able to see both a negative and positive image in a fraction of a second is magical. The smooth surface of the glass invites us to see the image, but because of the thickness of the glass, the appearance of depth subliminally messes with the mind.

You can't see what I'm talking about viewing these images here on screen, but I invite you to see a real Ambrotype, Wet Plate for yourself and see the magic. A great reason to turn off your screens and view real pieces with your own eyes...

Eyerish | 8x10 ambrotype

Moon | 8x10 ambrotype

November 02, 2013

For the Moment

Music | Many Names by Fred Anderson

I'm alone like I am most nights, but with the TV off and jazz coming thru the speakers, which is a nice change from the many many months past. It has been awhile where distraction is actually in tune with the way I am presently feeling. I felt a convergence between the music and the present me. I end up not feeling so alone in my solitary evening routine.
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