civilized ku # 5047 ~ old dog / new tricks

looking down ~ Au Sable Forks, NY - ItAP (embiggenable)

As previously mentioned I am working at writing a book on photography and its apparatus - very, very, very light on how-to and gear, emphasis on my experiences in my life in photography (commercial and personal/art) with the intent of shedding some light on the idea of finding, refining and mining my personal vision and how that might help others find theirs.

The writing is coming along nicely - in fits and starts due mainly to the fact that, while my story is rather self evident (to me), I am questioning why I have undertaken this endevour and what I hope to gain by doing so. I haven't come up with any firm answers yet other than to know fame and fortune will not be part of the equation.

One of the ideas emerging from this rumination is trying to understand why I have not succumbed to the current rage in the art world. That is, directing my picturing efforts inward to my internal world of personal feeling, emotions, fears, doubts, et al. A picturing practice which, iMo, is not only egocentric and self-serving but is also rather antithetical to the medium's intrinsic charatacteristic of picturing the real - as opposed to the ethereal.

One could propose that my inability to embrace picture making of immaterial concepts is simply a by product of my age. As in, you can't teach an old dog new tricks. I was raised, picture making wise, in an era in which straight picture making was the ideal and had been so for decades previous. Which is not to write that ethereal picture making did not exist at that time - see the pictures of Duane Michals.

The old-dog-new-tricks thing caused me to realize that, on a daily basis, I visit the websites/blogs of several picture makers who; 1. make straight pictures, and, 2. all of whom are most likely over 50 years old. That realization led me to start thinking about another project - let's call it 5 over 50 for discussion's sake - of finding 5 picture makers over 50 and creating a group exhibition (online, in a book and in an actual gallery - I have access to a gallery) of their work.

The only impediment to such an endevour is finding picture makers over fifty. I have several in mind but that number is but a small sample of what is most ptobably out there.