Monday, April 12, 2010

And I Made Something

Last term was a train wreck in about 30 different ways.

But, as a great philosopher once said, "don't dwell on the past. Always move forward."

And on March 29th, the spirit moved one Oregon photographer to take an exceptionally boring image. Everything starts somewhere, though, right?

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Artist Statement #1

A recent lecturing artist I saw reiterated the idioms for creating good art work when in a pinch:

1. Make it big. If not, then...
2. Make it red. If not, then...
3. Make 1,000 of them

These are all gimmicks. They're things to get people to pay attention to work that otherwise wouldn't merit attention. We've all done it. At least I know I have. Maybe minus the red part. I've never really been a fan.

Gimmicks are abundant in photography. Selective coloring, hand coloring, printing the leaders, soft focus, cross processing, the unsharp mask, the image macro, and the granddaddy of them all: HDR.

But all photographers miss the one major thing inherent to their medium: photography itself is a gimmick.

Photography alleviated painters, drawers, and printmakers of the "need" to work representationally. Photography was a novelty, albeit a cosmically amazing one, when it was first invented.

Thus photography's relegation to the backseat of the artistic merit bandwagon.

Photography is an even bigger gimmick now, when anyone can pick up a cheap digital SLR, throw a high pass filter on their work, get a million hits on Flickr, and rake in a few decent paychecks on Smugmug.

But rather than get caught up in the fickle fight to rescue photography from its gimmickry, we should embrace it. Let photography do what it does, and let's not worry about what all of those painters and drawers think.

Now go and make some LOLcats.