Lots of things been going on in the last month or so. I finished up the images from the Ironman triathlon project. Well - I finished taking the pictures. I've done the basic editing too, but haven't really looked at them all as a set. Part of the delay has been I've wanted to get a bit of distance from them, but also that I wasn't quite sure what I wanted to do with them. Initially I was shooting them with the idea that there would be a book, and that may still happen. Then I've been kicking around the idea of a small gallery show or end of season party and show, but that would probably need some sponsorship to pay for several larger prints. I did get one image accepted in the Texas Photo international competition opening next weekend, which is a thrill, but still not really the focus of the project. I'd also been contemplating putting something together for the SlideLuck PotShow coming up here in November.
Things fell in to place a bit more on Thursday night here, when I was at the Gathering of Photographers meetup in Austin. I hadn't been to this group before and had a great time. There were several very accomplished photographers there and I got some interesting ideas. In particular, I spent a while picking Julia Robinson's brain and seeing some of her multimedia slideshows. She was kind enough to put up with all my stupid questions and point me in what seems to be a good direction. I've always really enjoyed the sort of work put out by mediastorm, and the general mixing of still images along with audio. I'm a bit of a 'This American Life' and Ira Glass junkie as well. One thing I've realised in the last couple of years is that I want to try and tell stories with my photography, rather than just being happy with a series of greatest hits or one off images. I think the multimedia format has a lot of potential for that. Not really interested in video yet and there is a lot of power in looking at a still image, with audio that increases or expands upon the information in the image, without going to moving pictures.
Of course, that now means I need to work out how to put all that together. I've taken the pictures, but I didn't record any audio. I have a small Olympus WS-110 digital recorder that I think will be good enough to pick up the audio I need, but I have to go record it. Which now means I'm having to consider doing interviews, recording background sounds and arranging some instrumental backing music. Then I need to learn how to mix all those bits of audio together and sync it up to the images. The prospect of learning all this new stuff has really lit a candle under me - it's exciting! Reminds me of all the book structure and design that I absorbed for the first SoFoBoMo.
This evening, I was at Piercarlo's gallery show CHAN-CHAN. He did it in conjunction with another artist - a painter - Luis Abreux. Combined, they had paintings and photography hanging together. The images were all related to Cuba in various ways, and there was a live band playing music from the region too. It struck me that this was an even more engrossing multimedia presentation of the work. The band really evoked the feel of the area and helped transport you while looking at the images.
On the way home from that show, I ran into a friend of mine who's a great musician. Woode Wood is a fixture on the local running trail, playing his music and working on his videos. Things are picking up for him and he's putting a band together now. We hung out for a while and I was lucky enough to get my first guitar lesson from him. My fingertips are still sore. I was also able to arrange to license some of his music as the backing score for the slideshow - things are falling into place already! Check out his videos and vote for them on YouTube.