Wednesday, September 16, 2009

an exercise in two parts

Reading a couple of posts by Paul Lester and Anita Jesse triggered this. I'm going to be light in details in this first post, deliberately. This is part of one of the more eye-opening exercises I did on a recent workshop.

What was the first two dimensional piece of art that really had a strong influence on you?

You might need to sit and think quietly about it for 5 minutes to really get back into your past and think about the first image that got under your skin. It might be a photograph, a painting, it might be a 'cat in the hat' book you loved, or that caterpillar with holes in the pages. But if you give it some quiet thought there is probably one image back in they dusty places in your mind that stands out as the early moment of revelation or awe.

The second thing to consider is what would be the first photograph that really clicked with you and made you want to pick up a camera.

Give it a bit of thought. You certainly don't have to post here. This is not a test and there aren't correct answers. No point in trying to come up with some impressive response. Just think about it and maybe write down the one or two sources that come to mind.


but working through it.


Saturday, September 12, 2009

TPS: International competition

Artist's reception is tonight. Here are the images from the show.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Austin Tri


Another triathlon. Found a new angle for pictures in Austin - the bridge in the background is an iconic shape (and home to 1.5 million bats). I like how the backlit and overexposed river and bridges work with the fill-flashed athletes. Think I need to start finding something other than triathlon to shoot, for a while. Getting hard to keep it fresh and interesting.

Saturday, September 05, 2009

lessons and new ideas

first guitar lesson

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.

Friday, September 04, 2009

survived the Summer

texas photo

Another Summer spent in photographic aestivation. But again, Autumn is approaching. Temperatures are dipping under 100F at least before lunch time. I'm starting to feel guilty about this abandoned blog and wanting to write. I attended a really inspiring photography group this evening, that kicked off various ideas in my head. I've got a week off next week, to explore some of those ideas and I'm all fired up and ready to go. Next Friday the Texas Photographic Society international competition opens and I have an image on display, after a couple of years of trying to get in. Things are ticking along nicely. Time to start blogging again.

I've been trying to work out in my head what to do with all the triathlon pictures I've been taking. Finally started to edit them and try to select some and tell a story. Working on what that story might be. Thinking it will be more of a multimedia approach than I'd initially planned. Time to do some more audio work.