Thursday, August 12, 2010

People photographers

Some photographers I know have been overheard claiming to not be people photographers.  When I look at their work,  "most excellent dude!" I find that their images of and about people are my most favorite.  Many of us derive a great deal of pleasure pursuing ultimate landscape or nature photographs and as the journey is the experience that's great.  If however we want outstanding landscapes they're available in packages of 12 for about $10 in any stationery store...and if we don't need the calendar printed on their backs we could get last years images for about half price.

People on the other hand are compelling.  They demand we look at them and attempt to determine what's in their minds.  If I consider hiking with my children and now my grandchildren the views are why we start but the life we discover along the way is what excites us.  As exhilarating as the surf is it's the tidepools that fascinate us as they teem with life.  As a species we are drawn to life as a moth to the flame.

Over 50 years ago I was privileged to see Alfred Stieglitz image Sun Rays taken perhaps 70 years before that.  This image of a woman in a sun dappled room caused me to truly look at a photograph for the first time.  His later work with the Strands and of course Georgia O'Keeffe is marvelous.  His Equivalents I think is non sensical.

Of all Ansel Adams work two stand head and shoulders above the rest I think.  Moonrise over Hernandsez without the glowing crosses is a nice image of the moon and mountains but nothing more.  I love his image, interestingly also of Georgia O'Keeffe giving the Will Rodgers look alike Orville Cox a look.  What's that look anyway?  "How YOU doin" perhaps??

It's not easy to take people images, posed or spontaneous but that's what makes them special.

1 comment:

  1. People are like a blank canvas....every movement adds color to the canvas.