Wednesday, November 11, 2009

I've been thinking about this subject, but I always forget to write down my thoughts about it. Photography is like Ghostbusters. That little trap they throw out - It opens up, sucks in everything, and closes again, with all that stuff trapped inside. In their case it's ghosts. In my case, it's life. And it's that dynamic for me. People take it for granted. Cameras are probably of the most ubiquitous pieces of technology on the planet. I heard it put like this: Anyone can use a pen, but does that make them a writer? A writer has a relationship with words. A love affair. I can imagine what it's like to love another art because I have my own. I walk around and see light and I'm captivated by it. I could sit and watch sunlight hitting a wall all day long. But I don't have to. I have a camera. The shutter opens, it sucks in everything, and it closes again. And there's a moment trapped inside. I can view that moment later. I can print that moment and hold it in my hands. It's the reason I love the idea of film. Not using film, just the concept of it - there's a magic quality to it. A chemical change created by light smacking into the celluloid. You know that moment is in there. Physically.

I don't make photographs to produce a beautiful image. I don't show them so people can give me compliments. I make photographs because I like moments. I like to show people what they're missing. So much gets lost. I like strong composition and all that stuff. It's important. But that's a byproduct. Surface stuff. If that fraction of a second contains those things, it only makes it more interesting, but it's still about perspective more than anything else. How I looked at a situation. I'd still be walking around taking pictures if I was the last person on the planet. I'd find an empty gallery and fill it with photographs. Not for vanity. Not to admire my own work. I would fill it because it's my life. Framed pieces of time. They don't come back again. My advice is to look a little harder.