Well, this award is sort of new. This one actually goes waaaaaaaaaaaaaay back! Back to January! Thank you Ksenia of Moments for this Very Inspiring Blogger Award (VIBA). I appreciate this recognition from a very sharp photojournalist. Sorry for taking so long to accept it.
To accept it, here’s what I gotta do . . .
Yeah right! I speak about myself through my artwork.
1. Joshi Daniel – I’ve nominated Joshi before but it’s worth it to do it again; absolutely remarkable street portraiture.
3. Lost In Translation – I’ve been following Paula for a very long time. Gorgeous landscape photography.
4. Mad Woman With a Camera
5. Mark Kertesz Photography
6. MiltonJohns Photography – He shoots whatever genuinely impacts him.
7. Ming Wang Photography
8. Mishmash – The work of Mimi Patenaude; it’s about time that I paid respect to this fellow Canadian.
9. Modern Heiroglyphics – A great blog on graffiti and street art.
11. Monochrome one Photoblog
12. My Blog – Abstract portraiture from a Vancouver artist finding her way through the blogosphere.
13. My Blog with Pretty Pictures – Very impressive street photography.
14. Nylon Daze – Patti Kuche is an English photojournalist in New York. Her blog is a must see.
15. Next Picture, Please >>>
I’m talking about street photography, as I so often do! While many, rightfully, obsess about how to do it I’m often preoccupied with the reasons of why to do it. It comes from my upbringing. I was always taught that there is a reason for things; a reason for doing things. I should be conscious of my actions because my actions have positive or negative consequences. Not merely act out of some instinct or meaningless habit.
Truth be told, not everyone thinks ahead. Some of us do but unfortunately don’t think far enough ahead when it’s actually possible. Getting into some sort of trouble is typically how life tells us that we’ve grossly lacked foresight.
Thanks life, for letting us know after the fact! That’s just what we need! You’re so awesome!
Oscar Wilde is well known for many quotes. One being: “Experience is simply the name we give our mistakes.” Well, given some of his choices life, he really ought to have known. The blessed reality about his axiom; however, is that those who survive their mistakes are placed in a wonderful position to teach the rest of us to not copy their errors.
That said, not repeating history works well when we don’t arrogantly accuse the experienced ones of being hypocrites for not practicing what they preach. They’re only trying to save us from relying too much on that 20/20 hindsight.
I try to use art to make foresight a good habit.
Where I live, there is a grassroots effort (carefully trying to not say “movement”) to look at the city of Hamilton’s past to understand where most surviving things came from, discover what has been lost and complain about what might have been. One of the top ways this is done is to review historical photographs held by private collectors, public library and historical society and newspaper archives. We regard it as connecting with local heritage, and I know this happens in many other communities around the world.
For me, the only hang up about it is that it doesn’t seem to inspire serious consideration of the city’s future, and tomorrow’s prospects – as difficult as they are to predict, are important to me.
When I make sci-fi art, I’m often trying to envision a future so distant that it’s really hard to be certain of. Much closer to reality; when I do street photography at home or in some other city, one of my aims is to document how the place is now in hopes of instilling serious thought about the future.
Yes, although street photography is done viscerally there can be a meaningful purpose, and there is one for me. Just as there are photographic records of the past, there should be some of today. Not just so that future generations can use them to reminisce and bicker as we currently do but so that those pictures may hopefully also be used to help create a better tomorrow.
I want to take this opportunity to thank Virginia Stranaghan and all the members of the Hamilton Camera Club (HCC) for inviting me to be their guest speaker (November 4, 2013). I feel quite honoured that they selected me to introduce them to street photography (SP).
I’m especially excited to have spoken about street photography with fellow Hamiltonians. As I explained during the engagement, there are other Hamiltonians who engage in SP in the city but there doesn’t appear to be too many others who have made focused projects of the endeavour. I hope it will become infectious.
As I also explained, last October the city approved the draft of its first Cultural Plan under the Love Your City Project (http://www.hamilton.ca/CultureandRecreation/Arts_Culture_And_Museums/culturePlan.htm). Being incurably passionate about this city, its arts movement and this photographic art genre I like to think that SP will play some part in illustrating, promoting and even modifying Hamilton culture, in a positive way, over the next 20 years. I believe that members of the HCC will do their club and this city proud by rediscovering their local community through contemporary street photography.
I am absolutely thrilled about the amount of feedback that members have given. I think I fielded most of the questions that were asked. For those I couldn’t get to, I sincerely apologize but, to any members who may see this post, please don’t hesitate to e-mail me with your unanswered questions or ask right on this blog. You can also do so on the MOF community page on Facebook.
Some of what I discussed and more can be obtained through the Unrepentant Flâneurs Guide to Street Photography. To find your way to all twelve parts of the series whenever you need to, it’s easiest to just visit the Hammer Home Street Photography Project and click the link to the guide’s preface below the blog’s masthead image.
Hammer Home itself is the only project of its kind, to date, that is dedicated to showcasing the city of Hamilton through SP. By exhibiting the project mainly through blogging it functions as an interactive project, so HCC members are also most welcome to offer their thoughts and questions there along with others who are interested in creatively photographing the life of a city.
As promised, I will forward Virginia a summary of links, names and terms that she can disseminate within the club.
There were a couple people who expressed interest in me participating in one-on-one and small group photo walks as they venture into the genre. I would love to do this. Drop me a line and we’ll work on scheduling weekend outings.
For those associated and not associated with the HCC who will continue to pursue this genre, I can assure you that you are about to embark on one of the most challenging yet spectacular adventures of your life.
Again, I thank the HCC, and I wish them all the best.
This past Halloween, I tried to get under people’s skins by rooting through their gardens.
Okay, a number of hectic dealings over the past several months have inspired me to make at least one more post in this series. Knowledge is power and you collectors, especially the beginners, need power. So, I’m going to give you all some definitions to help you get started off on the right foot. Here we go.
2D Art or two-dimensional visual art is art that is largely produced in a flattened medium (e.g. drawings, paintings, photography).
I am a 2D visual artist. I paint, I draw and I print the fine art photographs that I prepare. Despite its nomenclature, 3D or three-dimensional digital illustration and graphics, which I do a little of, are associated with 2D art when produced, typically through printing, in flattened physical medium.
3D Art or three-dimensional visual art is art that is rendered with three-dimensional physical structure (e.g. pottery, sculpture, models, machines, toys, woodwork, etc).
Applied Art is visual art that includes industrial design, graphic design, fashion design, interior design and decorative art.
I also do some graphics.
If you like to collect one or more architectural renderings, car concept artwork or schematics, or you want to hire an artist to produce any of these, then you are a collector of applied art.
Art Collector or simply a collector is any person or faction who buys art for aesthetic appreciation and/or investment reasons; regardless of actual or perceived social or economic stature. This could be you.
Commercial Art is art forms that are not necessarily visual but are developed primarily for utility (see Fine Art).
Contemporary Art is art produced at this present point in time—specifically, since World War II.
I am a contemporary artist because my 2D visual art is contemporary.
Fine Art is art forms that are not necessarily visual but are developed primarily for aesthetics and/or concept rather than practical application (see Commercial Art). Yes, there is a fine line between commercial art and fine art because fine art can indeed be sold commercially, even if it was originally made with little or no utility in mind.
In September 1804, Napoleon Bonaparte commissioned the fine artist to the French aristocracy Jacques-Louis David to paint “Le Sacre de Napoléon (The Coronation of Napoleon)”. The piece was strictly for Napoleon’s vanity and posterity. Napoleon actually wasn’t crowned until Sunday December 2, 1804; that’s how sure the bugger was of himself becoming Emperor of France. The timing was; nevertheless appropriate as it gave J.L. David, with permission, the opportunity to watch the actual ceremony so that he could make the historic art piece with considerable accuracy. The enormous painting wasn’t completed until 1807.
David is said to have been paid 24,000 Francs. Historians say that for aaaaaaaaaaaaall of J.L. David’s time spent on it and putting up with Napoleon’s what’s-it-what’s-it ideas for making the piece just right, the commissioning wasn’t a very commercial undertaking for the artist. J.L. David’s scarcely concealed opinion of Napoleon is well known to this day in any case. There is a surviving sketch for the actual painting that depicts Napoleon poised to crown himself after snatching it from the Pope’s hands. The painting remains better known for its historical significance than what it was originally financially worth (which is okay in my book). Today, it’s priceless. As I said, it’s a fine line.
Modern Art sounds like it means the same thing as contemporary art but it is actually artwork produced between the 1860s and 1970s. If it’s not produced in that time period and is not exemplary of the philosophies of artistry in that era, then it’s not modern art. What modern art is, is not cheap. If you are not wealthy, that stuff can run you up!
Performance Art is art forms that create works which rely most heavily on some manner of kinetic involvement in their production, and are produced for an audience. Music, drama and dance are the performance arts.
Visual Art are art forms that create works which are primarily visual in nature, such as ceramics, drawing, painting, sculpture, printmaking, design, crafts, and often modern visual arts (photography, video, and filmmaking) and architecture (anyone collecting architecture as art, is also involved in real estate to some extent).
There are many more terms to reference but if you’re new to collecting art beyond going to Wal-Mart and picking up a framed photo of the Eiffel Tower, Marilyn Monroe or a sailboat you’ll never get anywhere close to that’s sailing on wide open and glittering waters, then these explanations are enough for now.
Yes, there will be a Part 3. In Part 3, I’m going to give tips on how to get your money’s worth in art.
Just a short note to say that I have just completed some grand changes to my leading street photography project, Hammer Home.
In assessing the scope of this project, when I began to present it through photo blogging, and the potential volume of work to be produced as time goes by; once I had lifted my own previously held restrictions on the number of photos to be made, I considered that the project required being spread across three separate blogs. There was to be one for Lower Hamilton, one for Hamilton Mountain and one for Rural Hamilton.
In spreading the project over three blogs, I did suspect that there would be less popularity with the depictions of life above the Niagara Escarpment; what Hamiltonians refer to as “the mountain”, in comparison to that of below the escarpment. As much as many citizens criticize the conditions and residents of Lower Hamilton, I continue to hear people from both areas also say that the suburban escarpment is “boring”. That said I expected even less interest in the goings on and images of rural living.
So, what have I done? In response to the closely observed attention given by you followers – from around the world, of the entire project, I have merged all three blogs into one. Gone are Hammer Home – Hamilton Mountain, Hammer Home – Rural Hamilton and Hammer Home – Lower Hamilton has simply been transformed into Hammer Home and given a new address.
All of the posts that were published to the Mountain and Rural sites will be reposted among all of the images and stories of Lower Hamilton, and there will be more to come.
Thank you all for following the growth of this project. I hope that you will continue to do so. Time will tell just how much more it will evolve.
I think this shot fits in well with WordPress’ latest photography challenge. Click HERE for the story.
2D visual artist specializing in illustration, photography and graphic design.