Reciprocity Success

I don’t know the correct protocol for links in the world of blawwgs, but may I suggest that if I linked to your website, you might consider linking to me as well? Or, even, if I have yet to link to you, feel free to link to this place anyway. Communication is key; the more, the merrier. Thanks.

W. o’ W.: Chuck Close

“The thing that interests me about photography, and why it’s different from all other media, is that it’s the only medium in which there is even the possibility of an accidental masterpiece. You cannot make an accidental masterpiece if you’re a painter or a sculptor. It’s just not going to happen. Something will be wrong.

“This is simultaneously photography’s great advantage and its Achilles heel: it is the easiest medium in which to be competent. Anybody can be a marginally capable photographer, but it takes a lot to learn to become even a competent painter. Now, having said that, I think while photography is the easiest medium in which to be competent, it is probably the hardest one in which to develop an idiosyncratic personal vision. It’s the hardest medium in which to separate yourself from all those other people who are doing reasonably good stuff and to find a personal voice, your own vision, and to make something that is truly, memorably yours and not someone else’s. A recognized signature style of photography is an incredibly difficult thing to achieve.

“It always amazes me that just when I think that there’s nothing left to do in photography and that all permutations and possibilities have been exhausted, someone comes along and puts the medium to a new use, and makes it his or her own, yanks it out of this kind of amateur status, and makes it as profound and moving and as formally interesting as any other medium. It’s like pushing something heavy uphill. Photography’s not an easy medium. It is, finally, perhaps the hardest of them all.”


(Photograph by Paul Strand)

How do pictures refer to themselves? How can photographs be about photography and the nature of camera vision? Would such images be dependent upon subject matter, or would they be process-oriented, or does it have mostly to do with optics? I suspect that each of you will come up with different solutions for this prompt. Try a couple of approaches to see what happens.

(Photograph by Fred Lebain)

Gibson’s Opinions

“Digital is a great way of transferring information, but digital imaging systems are not photography, because photography has to do with the alchemy of light on film. Photography creates new information that wasn’t there before, whereas digital transfers information that is in front of you. Like the telephone can transfer my words to your ear.

“With telephones and digital cameras, there are probably more images made in one day than in the whole history of “analog” photography. But name one masterpiece of digital photography—do you know one offhand? It is actually not the same medium. It is like the difference between cinema and video… they are different, and coexist.”