Monday, July 16

2007 Award Winner: Ahead Of It

Note: Accepted as one of theworld's finest Transportation Images of 2007 for Canon POTN Book to be published in the Fall of 2008.

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Read something last night about ... now get ready for this... heavy stuff coming... but only for an instant or two.... Are you ready??

In the current edition of Camera Arts, I read about pre and post visualization art in an interview with the legendary Jerry Uelsmann.

Okay... now hold on. It's really simple but when I understood - I had one of those "EUREKA!!! moments. You know, where you take the palm of your hand and slap it against your forehead? Here's the deal... Suppose you see exactly the art you want to create. You conceive of it full blown in your head. And then grab the right lens, position, filter, light, aperture, speed, ISO - the whole magilla. AND SNAP! See you conceived before you executed. Pre-visual. Gottit?

But for many of us, the process is where we shine. We discover so much as we pull back the onion skin and peer inside at the glimmering colors, forms, shapes ... and we begin to release the idea. We watch it come to life after the shutter was snapped. Post processing technology today has released us into an astonishingly magical post visualiztion world. We can diddle about in pure idea. Wheeeeeee!

And I understood... and muttered... "Eu----REEEK---AHHHHHHHH!!!!"

But sometimes the post visualiztion world isn't accessible. It doesn't let us find a treasure no matter how we wriggle it about. And that's sort of what happened to this image. I saw the moment coming down the road as I stood to photograph the farm. And I carefully let the carriage pass through my frame kicking off bursts of images. Knowing that I had a terrific sense of Americana. I had Norman Rockwell dreams all the way home.

But... but... I can't get what I previsualized to pop in the post visual process. No matter what I do, it remains a snapshot. PHAUGH! Okay, it's a nice snapshot. Still, I know I have the power to find more in this image. And yet... Just as some kids eyes are bigger than their stomaches. Some times my pre is bigger than my post... Sigh...


pnfphotography said...

I like your image I think the clouds make this image and the forward motion of the horses. I more than understand what you saw in your inner eye so I do understand what you mean. I personally do like the image but hey I like horses no matter what. I have zillions of images only I would understand horse wise....

advman said...


It doesn't work for me as well.
First, there is the obvious reason of the merger between foreground and farm in the background. It makes a busy mess out of the carriage. With much work this could be mended, of course.

But then there is the style. You do that sometimes, and I am not sure if I ever saw an example where I really like it: This looks like a B&W image that has been colorized. I hate it. I don't like it in movies and I don't like it in photographs. I don't see the point. If you have color to begin with, why wouldn't you just work with that? Or do away with it and leave it at that?

In a way, and that's a funny complaint to bring before you, this image looks too photographic, too documentary, while at the same time being not simple enough. That's the problem with documentary style photography: sometimes all comes together and falls in place, but most of the time it doesn't.


Bill said...

Great capture of the buggy and I like it. There's even a narrative here about these folks hurrying to get home before the clouds break open and they get sopping wet. And if I stop to listen I can hear the clop, clop, clop of the horses' metal clad hooves on the pavement.

And the sky is amazing BUT that, for me, is the problem. When I opened this image I went to the sky and stayed there for some time. This was an image of storm clouds with a buggy and it just didn't feel right because you told us it was about the horses and the buggy and, well, I just got confused because I always believe you Ted but not this time. Sorry, but for me this image is about the sky. At least that's the way I see it.

John Roberts said...

This is hardly a "snapshot", Ted. Although I agree with advman about the carriage getting a little lost in the background, it's still clear to me (or to my imagination) what is taking place in the photo. It is an image full of energy.