After a great and relaxing visit to Hot Springs NC this past week, I found this view of the 'landscape' worth a second or third look. This image also gave me pause to look back through some past trips and images to find that I seem to love painted landscapes. I can think of some in Milwaukee, Lousiville, Memphis & Niagra Falls that are also noteworthy.
I have a great idea about a new show of my work. I have tentatively titled it 'GATHERING PLACES'... Stay tuned!
So this is a good one. During one of the first trips home to work on my Southeastern View photographs, I blew a tire in KY. Luckily the Brooks Brothers were open late on a Sunday. I think if I would have had this experience today, I would have been more adventurous and photographed the interior of this place. Alas, I only busted out the XA and played outside for a minute while the Brothers did their work getting me back on the road.
Here's a good photograph I dug up from the 1999 neg box! I most likely shot this on a walk with my Olympus XA (a favorite pocket device back then). Touching on the theme of the automobile as well as the immediacy of a Walking photo. A testament to the ideals of keeping your eyes open in the world and that everything you look at could be something worth seeing, despite its banality.
Heading way back, into the 90's, I found some really fun B/W images that I had buried deep in the archives. I used up the car/garage theme pretty heavy as a fetish art property back in those days. I personally enjoy seeing where my compositional habits lie in these early images as compared to the formal stance I began to take a few years later. Looking at newer work, I can see a mix of the two styles in the compositions I have been making.
As I continue to dig and dig through the negative archives I am pulling a lot of interesting images back out for a second or third look. Early on in the search of the American Vernacular I used the automobile as a thematic device in photographing the built environment. I have found a few of these archetypes in my digging.
There are hundreds or thousands of unused gas stations in this country. When bigger roads get built and the traffic is diverted to the new path so does the business. My interest is peaked when the building is derelict and forgotten, yet the soul of the idea is still in place and tomorrow is in question.
My Mother was with me when I made the photograph that's on the cover of my Southeastern View book, and maybe that's why I chose it for the cover. I have always talked about that image and mentioned the fact that she was there and that was the only time. I was mistaken.
In going back through my old negatives, I found a few that I made at this somewhat abandoned gas station when we were on our way to lunch in December of 2000. Sorry, Mom, you should know that you are always with me and you are somehow in every photograph I make.
I recently decided to start from way back and re-look at ALL my negatives one sheet at a time. Even though I have some older negs, I felt that beginning with the 1999-2000 box would be fine. The idea is that between the time I took these photographs and now I have changed in a lot of ways as to what I find interesting in photography. I have also changed a great deal in why I find certain things interesting. So, to go back to the beginning and look at what I was looking at then with today's eyes may unearth a few gems that I overlooked.
It's true. I have found a lot of great (in my mind) images, that I overlooked or didn't fully connect with originally. These new pieces also coincide with my new habit of carrying a pocket 35mm camera again rather than my pocket digital. It may sound strange, but to me there is a tangible difference to the way I look at things with each format. It's not greatly different, but the differences are there.
Here's the first of the new batch. Enjoy.