Magnum Postcards

Dig. This.


Keep It Straight

(Insert illustration here [if I don’t]).

“The piano is a [mysogenistic aspersion]… you gotta get underneath her skirts to get to the truth.”

We all know what a “bebop head” is, right?

Regina’s Statement

I am not a street photographer. I am not a photographer. I am a little girl pointing her finger at things and saying “Look at that!”. Sometimes almost questioning, wanting to unravel the mysteries of life, sometimes admiring those mysteries so much I hope they will never be explained.

The camera helps me look with fresh eyes and enables me to show other people the world as I see it: a bit crazy, sometimes a bit hard, but always something beautiful hidden in there, too. The world is a wonderful place…

What happens outside the frame, or before or after the shutter opens and then quickly closes: If you were not there you will never know. A new context is created in which a story is told that is as much real as it is fantasy, as much hard as it is poetic, as much obvious as it is obscure.

My work is not surreal, it’s just reality itself that is so magical. Whether you’re standing on a mountain top or in your local super market, you can take pictures as straight forward as possible and the magic will still shine though…

See/read more of Regina van der Kloet’s work:

Advice for the New Semester

School is the perfect situation in which to take chances: you won’t go to jail, you won’t go to hell, and you won’t get beat up for trying and not succeeding. You have people around you who care, who are interested, and are there to help.

Don’t think of this class as one which educates your mind; rather, it will sophisticate you, which is different. Sophistication is knowledge that’s acquired in the course of having a purpose. You know why you want the information at the moment that you put your hand on it. You’re not just storing it up for a rainy day. Aspects of sophistication: love and style, spirituality and street smarts. Street smarts? Shrewdness and toughness? To protect something soft that is going to be in danger if it’s exposed at the wrong time and place. To protect a soul. You’re learning about the course of art, the course of society, the course of the world, the course of your life.

Set up a personal timetable for the semester and understand it. Break the term into days, weeks, months. You’ll be surprised how little time there is to shoot. Do it at the earliest opportunity you can make for yourself.

Don’t put off working on projects late in the day or at night that demand a lot of creative thinking. Attack problems and creative thinking when you are fresh and rested. At the beginning of each day organize your thoughts; write them down, if that helps.

Always try to understand that you are your own best enemy. Be nice to yourself when you are tackling the unknown. Realize that you are going to fail a lot before you succeed. Allow time for this to happen. Creative work is not mechanical. It deals with your subconscious, your view of yourself and your emotions. If you’re at odds with your friends or family and you are depressed, don’t do creative work. Do mechanical, non-reasoning, unemotional work such as cleaning up or organizing. Don’t try to do more than is possible in the time you have available to you.


Everyone needs to get out more.

Photographs are made in the light.

Making new negatives releases endorphins.

Where you stand and where you put the edges makes clear your intention. The center takes care of itself.

The earlier in the photographic process one takes care of details, the easier everything is.


“If you suffer any sense of confusion in life, the best thing you can do is make little forms.” -Robert Frost

“Making the simple complicated is commonplace. Making the complicated simple, awesomely simple, that’s creativity.”  -Charles Mingus

You can look all you want.

If you are an Illinois resident, the Art Institute of Chicago will admit you for no charge on weekdays through February 10.

You’re still home? Go there!


Let’s Don’t Fixate on Kodak

Tri-X (or do you know it as 400TX?) is beautiful stuff, and XTOL makes life simpler, but the corporate mentality went south long ago, and there is a history of dubious decisions and tenuous commitment to serious workers.

“The demand for traditional monochrome films and papers remains strong. With Agfa no longer in the black and white photographic market, and Kodak pulling out of manufacturing black and white papers the future of ILFORD PHOTO products looks good for years to come.”

What’s New in the WWoP?

Not much.

Intrinsically Interesting

 Gary Gutting makes important points about the worth of a college education, but much of what he says applies to life at BHS.

“Teachers need to see themselves as, first of all, intellectuals, dedicated to understanding poetry, history, human psychology, physics, biology — or whatever is the focus of their discipline.  But they also need to realize that this dedication expresses not just their idiosyncratic interest in certain questions but a conviction that those questions have general human significance, even apart from immediately practical applications.  This is why a discipline requires not just research but also teaching.  Non-experts need access to what experts have learned, and experts need to make sure that their research remains in contact with general human concerns. The classroom is the primary locus of such contact.

“Students, in turn, need to recognize that their college education is above all a matter of opening themselves up to new dimensions of knowledge and understanding.  Teaching is not a matter of (as we too often say) “making a subject (poetry, physics, philosophy) interesting” to students but of students coming to see how such subjects are intrinsically interesting.  It is more a matter of students moving beyond their interests than of teachers fitting their subjects to interests that students already have.   Good teaching does not make a course’s subject more interesting; it gives the students more interests — and so makes them more interesting.

“Students readily accept the alleged wisdom that their most important learning at college takes place outside the classroom.  Many faculty members — thinking of their labs, libraries or studies — would agree.  But the truth is that, for both students and faculty members, the classroom is precisely where the most important learning occurs.”

Read the rest (and part 2 as well):

The Hamilton College Jazz Archive

Here is an exemplary archive of interviews with musicians who are gone, and who still walk amongst us. Monk Rowe, and some others (who should be canonized) assembled an admirable collection of recordings that preserve big chunks of Americana.

First, familiarize yourself with, oh, for instance, Clark Terry and Joe Williams, if  you need to, on wikipedia; then watch these:

…finally, seek them out on

This is our culture, not Herman’s Hermits or Sam the Sham or John Denver. Learn it and absorb it. It’s still alive, and it will nourish you.

P.S. One could easily lose a weekend at this site; fair warning.

Some Sentences


Which of the following statements by Torbjorn Rodland apply to your current work?

The muteness of a photograph matters as much as its ability to speak.

The juxtaposition of photographs matters as much as the muteness of each.

All photography flattens. Objectification is inescapable.

Photography cannot secure the integrity of its subject any more than it can satisfy the need to touch or taste.

Good ideas are easily bungled.

Banal ideas can be rescued by personal investment and beautiful execution.

Lacking an appealing surface, a photograph should depict surfaces appealingly.

A photograph that refuses to market anything but its own complexities is perverse. Perversion is bliss.

A backlit object is a pregnant object.

To disregard symbols is to disregard a part of human perception.

Photography may employ tools and characteristics of reportage without being reportage.

The only photojournalistic images that remain interesting are the ones that produce or evoke myths.

A photographer in doubt will get better results than a photographer caught up in the freedom of irony.

The aestheticizing eye is a distant eye. The melancholic eye is a distant eye. The ironic eye is a distant eye.

One challenge in photography is to outdistance distance. Immersion is key.

Irony may be applied in homeopathic doses.

A lyrical photograph should be aware of its absurdity. Lyricism grows from awareness.

For the photographer, everyone and everything is a model, including the photograph itself.

The photography characterized by these sentences is informed by conceptual art.

The photography characterized by these sentences is not conceptual photography.