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This blog is intended to showcase my pictures or those of other photographers who have moved beyond the pretty picture and for whom photography is more than entertainment - photography that aims at being true, not at being beautiful because what is true is most often beautiful..

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« Ireland / Scotland # 19-22 ~ as easy as 1 2 3 | Main | civilized ku # 4004-06 (ku-ish) ~ hockey trip with a twist »

Ireland / Scotland # 16-18 ~ it all depends upon how you look at it

grave yard ~ Ardara, County Donegal, Ireland • click to embiggen

Whatchta Mc Collum's ~ Ardara, County Donegal, Ireland • click to embiggen

milling around ~ on the road to Glencolmcille, County Donegal, Ireland • click to embiggen


When I am finished making final pictures from Ireland and Scotland, I will have over 225 'final' pictures. Some of which are holiday pictures, some of which are more than that. My intent is to edit the pictures down to 60 selects to be printed in a book. Although, I am also giving thought to creating 2 books - one comprised of 'holiday' type pictures, one comprised of (dare I write?) 'fine art' type pictures.


What, you might ask, is the difference between the two types? Good question and one about which I have been pondering.

To my eye and sensibilities, the difference is along the lines of what one chooses to put within the frame of a picture. In the case of 'holiday' pictures, the content is about an specific object (people, places, things) - the replication / representation of a singular referent and everything about those pictures is aimed at drawing the viewers attention directly to, as Joel Meyerwitz states, "the copy of an object in space."

Hopefully, in the making of a 'holiday' picture, the picture maker is attuned to light, framing, et al in the cause of making a visually pleasing picture. If that attention to picture making detail is linked to an object of some interest, the picture maker will have a pleasing 'holiday' picture which can hold the viewer's eye for for more than just a passing glance. I have made my fair share of such pictures.

When I attempt to make 'fine art' pictures, while there is usually a singular object which has prick my eye and sensibilities but I am also drawn to its tenuous relationship to other unrelated things. Relationships which create a visual tension - I think of it as visual energy - which can cause 'vibrations' in the viewer's eye and sensibilities.

In other words, my pictures are about more than the singular object of my attention. They are also about light, color, shapes, and tonal qualities and the visual energy created by their tacit yet tenuous interaction / relationship. I want the viewer's eye and thought to careen around the 2-dimensional surface of the print, held in check only by the frame I have imposed upon the scene. Although, that written, the viewer's thoughts may try to break out of the frame in order to consider what might lie beyond.

For certain, a 'holiday' type picture is a much easier 'read' that is a 'fine art' type picture. Especially so if the viewer's sensibilities are not attuned - consciously or not - to those qualities which cause a picture to 'sing'.

Reader Comments (1)

And so, how would you categorize the three included pictures?

June 30, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterJohn

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