Sticking and unsticking

September 30, 2010

My route into photography didn’t involve much in the way of formal training – I got myself a camera, was let loose in darkrooms, and made it up as I went along, bundling it into an art school education. So far, so good.

The course I went on recently was the first time in years that I’d given myself some proper time to reflect on where I’ve got to and where I want to go next. All good, you might think, but my most startling revelation has been my desire to retrace my steps, repack my rucksack and head off in a slightly different direction. I’ve spent years catching photos in the air, grabbing them as they skate past, scooping them from the water with a large net, but now I find myself chasing something altogether different, less tangible. At the moment I’m stalking what feel like shadows, and am spending more time making notes about my thoughts about photographs than in taking the photographs themselves. I’m putting aside the trusty old film SLR’s omnipresent 50mm f1.4 lens, strapping on a 135mm lens and focusing on portions of scenes; veering back towards TLRs; trying out old DSLRs. Forcing myself to think about my technical choices, rather than simply seeking out the little red dot that says I know what I’m going to get. Thrashing around and hoping that something will catch.

I haven’t had to, or even tried to, start again in so long. Maybe I haven’t tried because I knew it would be this perplexing. I’ve just sent off a film full of experiments. I’m nervous about what might come back, but mindful that shaking things up means, inevitably, a bit of disruption.

Comments (0) | Tags: , | More: Blog

Leave a Reply