Blog

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Cutting Through

10 September 2017

So how do I cut though in the medium of photography? How do great photographs cut through? One way is examine it a little further. If a photograph is closest to memory, with memory comes the past, and time, away from and out of the present moment. A photograph is a reminder of the passing of time. To me there is some inherent sadness in this, as it means, in time, the passing of ‘me’. It is a loss. I will be someone else’s memory one day, someone else’s photograph looked at 100 years from…

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Facing island

Ways of Seeing

10 June 2017

Your way of seeing comes from within you, not from your subject matter. Unless you want to use the camera (or your chosen medium) to merely record what is in front of you. Nothing is objective, as the choice of where to stand, placement of the frame, the exposure settings, post processing, and the preference of one photograph over another are all subjective decisions. Subjectivity can be reduced to a minimum but objectivity is a myth. 

I have a set of criteria that is integral to who I am…

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After pollock

Learning From Another Medium

28 May 2017

It can be very useful to apply insights from one creative medium to a different medium in order to deepen understanding in both mediums. Previously I wrote that music is a direct expression of emotions. Yet, to me, a photograph expresses a felt sense, rather than as-direct-a feeling as a piece of music can. I believe this comes about because music has a direct connection to the emotional brain due to the melody, rhythm or harmony evoking a feeling. Thought and the thinking mind are not…

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Buddha face

At the Coalface of the Unknown

11 April, 2017

To me, creativity is sitting right at the coalface of the unknown. This takes courage because failure is imminent. Ego likes certainty and security, which is the known. So the basis of the view that I am creative person or that I produce wonderful work is always on the verge of collapse when facing the unknown. It is a turning towards and facing the existential angst. Pressures mount, anxiety intensifies, and other questions haunt below the surface and threaten to overwhelm the mind, such as…

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Path 2

The 'Path' of True Creativity 

March 12, 2017 

"If there is a path before you, it is not your path" Joseph Campbell 

I find it useful, for any creative endeavour, to have a look into the nature of creativity itself. My first caveat is that you must do this for yourself. Don't be lazy. Laziness is anathema to creativity in the long run. My second caveat is to choose your own metaphor for creativity. My third caveat is to define terms that get straight to the point. My last caveat is: you do not have to pursue a creative endeavour, it is…

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Art Comes From Life 

January 26, 2016 

Any type of art practice is the consistent, structured application of practices and methodologies to concepts that centre around meaning making and communication. The process is integral to the result. It is multi-disciplinary, experiential, and is self validating through the need to create and make sense of self and /or one's relation to one's experience of the world. 

It is more than a hobby, it is primarily about meaning making and the joy of creating. It is not a substitute for a…

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Dream number 2

The Act of Photographing 

February 10, 2015 

A photograph is essentially an object, an object on a wall, in your hand, on a page, or on your screen. It is two dimensional. It is usually rectangular, or, if the photograph is square in format, it is usually on a rectangular page or screen. The two-dimensional physicality of a photograph is important because it is the end product. It is the message. 

The actual act of photographing is entirely different. It is the means of communicating, the medium through which communication takes…

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Down At The Crossroads...Structure and Creativity 

August 25, 2012 

Photography and music appear to be different languages. However, the same question underpins both: Why learn and speak the language? It is not about having something to say. Words are available for that. To me it is something more. 

Time is crucial in music. Sloppy timing isn’t satisfying. Good exposure (recording the light) is important in photography. Both require a level of technique. Let’s call technique facility. Having facility means being free to express, not being stuck or…

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Shadow self

A Crisis of Construction 

April 15, 2012 

That we construct our own reality is a fiction. To construct reality, we would have to be apart from it, outside of it, in order to construct it. This is absurd. Yet this is the state of a lot of contemporary art and contemporary art photography. It is a double fiction, because its sincere belief that we construct our own reality has become a 'reality' in itself. It is like the old saying, "tell a lie long and often enough, it becomes a truth." We could argue that, like novelists, we dream…

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Interior landscape 2

The Art of Emptiness 

January 25, 2012 

Is this image that of a flat piece of land set against a blue sky, or is it a table top against a wall? Our perception may allow us to recognise it as both. 

We are programmed to perceive what we expect to see. Sometimes, what we are looking at may not be what we perceive it to be. 

Which one is true? It depends on your perception. Our logical minds cannot process a “both-and” scenario and dictate that it must be “either/or”. However, truth is linked to perception and perception makes…

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