Thursday, September 9, 2010


After self-publishing (one copy) of Sketches in May of last year, I decided to throw the files online and publish it again, this time with Blurb. Blurb worked wonders for my John Hubbard thesis book and helped me snag a spot in a show in New York.

Now, both Sketches and Sketches II are available through my Blurb bookstore. They're tiny little things, and aren't too expensive. I just got the test pressings in the mail and they look pretty good.

And, with a collective finger-crossing propelling my destiny, the two Sketches books and the Hubbard book will make their way to New York in the hopes they'll be selected for a photobook exhibition. Wish me luck.

All three books are available for purchase and preview at my Blurb bookstore site.

PS. Copyright apologies to the creators of The Critic, and to John Shaw, who is the only person I know that will get the joke.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Artist Statement #3

There is a slew of photographers whose artist statement says something to the effect of "I take photographs of the beautiful things/moments other people don't see."

That's mean. That's a mean thing to say. Why say that?

Capturing a moment (and is that even possible?) no one else sees and then (presumably) showing it in photo form to the person (or people) that have missed it eliminates the chance of said person (or people) witnessing that moment for themselves. It cheapens the moment. It deprives people from looking for things for themselves. It insults the average viewer by insinuating that they missed something, the way you feel when you miss the comb hidden in the tree in the puzzle in Highlights.

A statement like this also defers ownership and responsibility on the part of the photographer. The modernists all photographed their subjects because they thought the subjects were beautiful and they were personally moved by that beauty. The postmodernists photographed their subjects because they had things to say about photography itself.

The contemporary photographer is let off the hook by making a sweeping, bland statement about their photographic vision. It doesn't say anything substantial; it merely says that they have a keener eye than the average person and that makes them a little bit more important. And that's something that should be assumed of any photographer any time they frame something and put it on a wall for someone else to see.

I don't want to be told that you're witnessing a secret reality that can only be seen through your lens. That's ridiculous. I want to know what it is about you that makes you take these photos. With that knowledge, I'll be more inclined to understand what it is about myself that makes me appreciate them.

Or, if I can't figure that out, it'll make me want to go make some of my own work.