Monday, July 19, 2010
While asked to start a tumble account, another hotspot for the modern blogger, I was introduced and eventually started following LOOKBOOK, a fashion blog straight from the San Francisco creator Yuri Lee. The "street fashion" is inspired by the members of the site, and then are scored based on Hype of the style using a point system. Irregardless, I was more focused on the images, all submitted by the members themselves, 50,000 and growing.
This is where my inspiration started.
I would call a model, ask her to get me a look ready to shoot, and would drive to a location that we think it right. The premise is a little different than the member driven images, but hey, I am one person v. 50,000.
So far I have done 3 shoots this way and am loving it. There is something about the unpredictability and the non-concept drive work that drives me to do it more, and will continue to do more work like this. Eventually, I will brave myself to go walk the streets without a model, and photograph the everyday Atlanta member, and other cities, and re-create the the near authenticity of the LOOKBOOK.
Wednesday, July 14, 2010
While browsing through a fashion marketing major's magazine collection, I stumbled upon that rare instance of magazines never seen on shelves at your local bookstore. In the vast collection, Volume 1 of Plastique happened to be the one to catch my eye, a collection of fashion stories, advertisements, editorials and much more, an over-the-top culture magazine leaning towards the fashion and pop lifestyle.
During that first quick browse in attempt to see whether I would like the magazine, I, two-thirds of the way, got a glance-turned-minute-long-stare in to Karin Berndl's "Duality" work. At first I was apprehended by the amazingly clean retouching, something I look for with every fashion magazine that passes in front of my eyes. Thus this minute turned two minutes, suddenly everything came together and I wanted to see more of her work!
Karin Bernl's work reminds me of a monochromatic Tim Walker at times, at others a collaboration of graphic design and illustration plus photography. She combines her skills to execute wonderful conceptual photographs which have quickly made her rise as one of my favorite photographers!
This is the link to her site: http://www.karinberndl.com/
Wednesday, July 7, 2010
On a recent trip to the High Museum of Art Atlanta, I received a rare glimpse of a body of work from Peter Sekaer, a Danish Born American Artist. Sekaer was born in Copenhagen Denmark in 1901, but at the end of the Great War he immigrated to the United States. In New York City, he was introduced to the art scene, eventually meeting Ben Shahn and Walker Evans. By 1934, Sekaer left his successful printing business, his painting, and solely focused on studying photography, where his contact through Walker Evans led him to work with various government projects established by Roosevelt's New Deal Project. Throughout the six years, Sekaer managed to capture the essence of culture and what it meant to be a citizen of America in the late 30's and early 40's. His training a photojournalist provided an objective view of the scene, but his inner human provided the subjective and often emotional response of what he saw while on these excursions.
But this introduction has been a way to introduce another important question. Can the work of a photojournalist be considered fine art?
If art is subjective, then how does Fine Art get defined? I have never doubted that photojournalism is Fine Art, but at some point my thoughts clashed together and repeatedly mentioned the Fine Art was exclusive to an aesthetically pleasing, and in modernist terms, concept driven work. It was work that did not appear on weekly covers of magazines, but hung in museums across the world. To overcome, I looked at works by Sekaer, Evans, Lange, Greenfield, Eddie Adams, Stearns and many other photojournalists, attempting to single out what it was that made their work come together. What was it about photojournalism that was so unique, but at the same time shared the most fundamental quality of Fine Art work? It took some time, but I did find an answer in the introduction of Sekaer's work, and soon realized that it was present across the board of all other photojournalistic work, as well as Fine Art work. In looking at it, the viewer has a "respond" mechanism activated, they are engulfed emotionally. That is in fact what all fields of art have in common, the emotional response to their work.
Is photojournalism considered Fine Art? I say absolutely yes!