Tuesday, March 6, 2012


Yesterday morning, I went out to the 8th Pole, in the barn area of Suffolks Downs, to do an interview with Adam Ragussea of WBUR about this recently published book...

and so I was very pleased to see all the work you folks put up.

Just a few words before vacation...and as you move on to continue your projects or to start a new one or ones...

It's fine to be working on two visual tracks. For instance, Andrea put up very clean, nicely composed, quite visually simple images of the signs that she's beset by during her time in Boston...and she put up much more complex images about the visual clutter she finds...she's chosen to work on the more difficult project...and may, or may not, be able to incorporate the simple photographs (maybe as visual chapter headings.) But that doesn't matter...she had many camera struggles, did a lot of work in a short time when she finally could, printed quite a few images and is clearly thinking about and working on what interests her -- the more cluttered, noisy images.

If you're working in the darkroom, make fast work prints (not perfected prints) so that you have a group...then put them up and look at them, make decisions about the most effective, interesting images, and the direction you'll take in your next roll of film. Do the final prints much later on because they take much more time.

The whole point of doing projects (a project, three projects) is investing in them...picking a topic that's difficult, that involves coordinating successfully with your subjects or spending a lot of time walking around, hunting them up, looking at the results and going back out for more. Projects take time. Any set of images that could be done in an afternoon isn't a project...though you might do a set of images in an afternoon and then pick the best and add those to the next set of images done in the morninng...and so on...  

So, please think investment -- the complexity of your idea and the time you're spending on working with it. And please think about risk -- moving out of what you can do comfortably     Or taking what you can do comfortably up another notch.  And if you've taken the Workshop before, remember that you're also taking that experience forward, pushing up another notch, doing something more difficult.

In grading, I will put more emphasis on your most developed project. So, if you had trouble starting or grasping the concept of extended projects in which the images support each other to develop a visual idea/thought, don't worry.

And if you're showing your work after the break, don't worry.
If you had a hard time achieving what you know you want, and it takes another week AFTER the break, don't worry. It's more important that you have really struggled to get a set of photographs that you care about.
And if you want to add more to what you have already shown, feel free to do it.

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