Thursday, February 19, 2009

I Love Black and White Photography

Puddles (1980) marks the beginning of an exploration into diptychs. The self-devised exercise was simple: compose a dual image print in the camera. Develop and print it.

Imagine this image hanging on the wall. 

Click on it and tell me how do you feel when you look at it? 

I used a 35mm stereoscopic, half frame camera which yielded 72 images per 36 exposure roll. 


Similar framing in Bucket Boy (1980) enhances the pictorial elements of elapsed time and action. However, viewing these adjacent frames, one might find equal or greater viewing satisfaction by horizontally reversing the image. 

Who can tell me why?

Boots and Toes (1980) was a spontaneous collaboration of three people. 

Poolsharks, Florida @ 1987. 

The spacing of half-frame exposures was not always consistent. There was enough slack in the film advance that half frames did not always enjoy separation by a black line. I like what happened here.


Back to the early 1980s. 
My first triptych, Trucks, was inspired by my newly born son, Adrian.


Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Naked Man on the Roof

Thirty years ago, it was deemed a good idea to go atop my three story roof in the middle of Minneapolis and get naked. I was the camera man, a practicing photo artist, and the enthusiastic collaborator on another nude photo shoot. My brother-in-law was the subject.

As I approach my 70th year of life, I am still realizing how valuable that photo safari was. It continues to work for me on a number of different levels. 

This shoot was our artistic statement of manhood. We made a visual record. Proof of Do Power. We were full of energy and enthusiasm. We had been spending our days climbing up and down scaffolding while repairing my Victorian house. Our confidence was great; we could race around the third story roof top.

Reviewing this photo brings me a new sense of humility and appreciation; the fullness of life is exhilerating. There is a sweetness to the recall of strength and daring that we enjoyed.  I can see that my aesthetic vision has remained true through the years; keep it simple, what's the point?

Friday, February 13, 2009

Vinca at the door

It's February and the oak leaves litter the sidewalk around the house. The screen door to my room never fit tightly on its own. But even in Florida the cool winter evenings send living things into shuddering fits. Witness the warmth seeking Vincas as they try to move indoors. 

These Vinca must like me. They refuse to stay out of doors.
I assume it's the warm air, but maybe it's the musky smell. 

I treat them like visitors and leave the door unlatched.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

To Rusty with Love

A huge hole opened up in the Murphy-Zeck-McCarthy family just six days ago when our eldest male, Russell Murphy, pulled up stakes and left this world. Right now that hole is being filled by a river of tears that may never cease. How wonderful it was to have him for a big brother!