“Quit trying to find beautiful objects to photograph. Find the ordinary objects so you can transform it by photographing it.”
This months blew by quickly; I can’t believe that Abstract April is coming to a close. I had a lot of fun putting these images out there, even though I know that abstract photography can be difficult for some people to appreciate. I do like looking for interesting compositions, strange textures, and random objects – this kind of photography is like a scavenger hunt, and it motivates me to play closer attention to the world around me.
I think to start out next month, I’ll be taking a step back from a lot of the macro photography that dominated this month’s images. Rather than surfaces and textures, I think the them of May will be ‘Places.’ I think that’s a sufficiently vague theme to give me decent breathing room. I hope you’ll join me.
As we enter a new month, I’m considering the theme of ‘March in Mexico.’ I have countless images that have never been published from my springtime trips to the Copper Canyon (Barrancas del Cobre) Region the the state of Chihuahua. There’s a unique mix of indigenous tradition and Catholicism, an appreciation for tradition and an embrace of modernity, and there just isn’t any other place on earth quite like it.
To start things off, though? I present to you another semi-abstract image I was tinkering with. Aligned with other monochrome, macro, minimalist images, this is a photograph of a line of numbers hammered into a small piece of plate metal affixed to a wooden light pole. It certainly asks more questions than it answers. The area is roughly the size of a chewing gum wrapper, and it’s one of those easy-to-miss textures and details of daily life. I’m sure that the number refers to a manufacturing spec or is related to inventory or is somehow connected to the area that the product was routed to for installation, but your guess is as good as mine.
I enjoy the texture and contrast, and I don’t really mind the mystery.
Today’s image, like many that came before, is a throwback to the days when I was making mostly abstract artwork. Rather than rattle on about my interest in abstract photography, I will simply leave today’s image with the following quote by Pablo Picasso:
“There is no abstract art. You must always start with something. Afterward you can remove all traces of reality.”
“The longer you look at an object, the more abstract it becomes, and, ironically, the more real.”
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Film February continues with yet another recurring theme in the pantheon of old subject matter. Some people miss out on what’s going on around them because they stare at their shoes rather than look around. There’s nothing wrong with staring at the ground, if you ask me – there’s a lot going on there.
As I’ve mentioned in previous entries to this project, street photographer Aaron Siskind played a major role in inspiring a younger version of myself. Seeking out interesting compositions in mundane places became something of a game. While interning at The Center For Creative Photography in Tucson, I also became deeply fascinated by a photographer named Minor White, who also had a tendency to isolate seemingly normal, everyday objects and somehow manage to make them alien, interesting, unique.
There is definitely something magical about working in black-and-white film.