2 days ago (Wednesday) was the regularly scheduled day to chase and expand the artistic visions that keep flickering in my head. Some weeks it happens on a Monday, others, on a Tuesday, but every week I try to carve out one day that is meant for the sole purpose of feeding my creative soul and pushing myself into new territories. Wednesday was no exception.
I had a joint fashion portfolio shoot with Lindsay Worsham and my light bending brother Richard Israel. I think you can see his images HERE. I went into the shoot with two self-challenges; shoot it all with a non-dslr camera with only manual focus lenses that were meant to be used on a 1930’s camera and everything was to be shot jpg straight out of camera. If I wanted it B&W, I would need to change it in the camera. If I wanted more or less contrast, I would have to change that too. I wanted to lose all of the post time and put more thought into each image before pressing the shutter. It was a most freeing and rewarding venture. Further thought will be put into my daily workflow regarding this.
I have had this thought in my head that we as “modern photographers” have too much control over our images and too many choices in gear. I know I spend too much time perfecting every detail that will never be seen in a print. Viewing every detail at 100% had become essential for me. Having the cleanest, sharpest, largest file was something that I felt I needed. The creative freedom I have in post processing was almost becoming a hindrance to my photography. Having to choose through the arsenal of lenses, cameras, lighting and gadgets was becoming more important to creating the image itself. This thought had been creeping into my mind after re-establishing my chemical photography over the past couple years. I would go out and shoot some film, Polaroid or wet plate, process it, scan it and I was done. The images were just what I was looking for with no need to sit and stare at a monitor to find the perfect action for the image. I think it came down to allowing the happy accidents back into my photographic life and not trying to control every aspect. I was feeling that film was honest and digital was a twisting of the truth. While I do somewhat sign on to that belief, I also believe that there is the right camera for a particular job and/or aesthetic. I think I was feeling this because of the “post processing possibilities” (or the triple P) of digital. It never ended and always took me further away from truth, granted, sometimes that is what I wanted. By going back to straight Jpgs is just a step I am playing with now in the digital world. Film and digital are just different and I am fine riding both of them on a journey to where ever they may take me.
Below are the images from the day. Not anything mind-blowing just simple, honest and rewarding images to me. That is what matters.
Technical notes: the right camera for the feel.