Sunday, 16 August 2015


It's a while since I posted anything on here, which is not because I haven't taken any photos, I have taken lots, but because I haven't had much to say about them. But since writing over on 'that photography forum' the other day that I'm coming to think there are two sorts of photographer - instinctive/reactive ones and planners/controllers - it sort of fits in with what I have been doing with my cameras.

Most of the time I've been using my compact. Not because it slips in a pocket, but because it's flexible to use and the results are perfectly good enough for the use they have been put to - blogging. With a bit of care they are good enough to print to at least A4 too.

There's the nub. I take photographs when something presents itself to me as a likely subject. To some people that's plain wrong. They have to have an idea of what to photograph before they pick up a camera, while having a camera to hand is what makes me  think about taking pictures. For the planners that camera choice is important, for me anything available will have to suffice.

It's the same with projects. I had this 'big project' in mind. Made a few pictures then sat at the computer and wrote introductory notes and plotted out how to present it in book form. I even got as far as making some dummy page layouts. It was all there in my head how the finished thing would look. All that remained was to gather some information and take the photos to fit the blank spaces in the layout. That was when I lost interest and shelved the project. Probably for good.

It seems to me that no matter how strongly someone might advise you to work in a particular way your have to find strategies for making photographs or developing projects that work for you. There's no single right way. My main strategy is the haphazard one of having a lot of ideas lodged in my brain and taking photos to suit them when they crop up on my aimless wanderings. Sometimes I'll get it in my head to go and do something specific. A case in point was a return to the marsh.

Trying to make pictures about a flat, open space is quite difficult. The wide views never really capture any of the spirit of the place. I suppose I could wait for a dramatic skyscape and take the easy way out. But that's not my style. The approach I seem top have adopted is to make pictures of details where land and water interact. Some as single images, some as pairs or more of pictures.

I'm still not sure if this is the best solution, but it's the one I'm running with at the moment. There's every chance it'll prove to be yet another dead-end!

At the other end of the scale the Autoflora project has, I'm pretty certain, been put to bed. The end result being a simple set of four pictures. I couldn't see any need to explore the concept any further by looking at other ways in which plants and cars cross paths. The pictures of overgrown car parks and tracks seems to be based on a different idea altogether.

Making diptychs, grids and strips of pictures has become a bit of a habit for me. Or has it become a style? I do like the way they can say more than a single picture, yet don't need to go over the top like some typology projects do. A whole book of pictures of different examples of one kind of thing can be tedious. Not to mention a bit pointless. It's an easy path to take though, which is probably why it's popular among a certain section of photographers. Ones who like planning things and knowing what they'll be doing next. What I'll be photographing next remains a mystery.

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