Newsletter #165: February, 2019
© Chris Harris. All rights reserved.
This year, as I often do at this time, I went to Ireland to visit my younger sister. Jane is a painter and so was her late husband, Tony O’Malley. I love my visits with Jane and I always look forward to photographing there. Her home and studio are filled with art books, paintings, sculptures and, of course, lots of paint, brushes, and a variety of coloured materials from which to make photographic art.
Wanting to keep it simple, I brought just one camera body, and two lenses; a 24-105mm and a 100mm macro. I did not bring a tripod.
Here is an insight to some of the imagery I made there in January.
In this, my 165th consecutive monthly photographic newsletter. Enjoy!
- A Family Visit to Ireland: Jane’s studio
- There are No Limits to Creativity: Jane’s studio
- A Lifetime ago: Exploring nature and myself
- A Favourite Spot in the Coast Mountains: Ape Lake
- Real or Imagined: a recent blog post & response
A Family Visit to Ireland: Jane’s studio
Apart from a couple of overview images, I used my macro lens exclusively for two weeks. Doing this, I really enjoyed the challenge of a restricted perspective. It provoked me to investigate subject matter that I might never have looked at.
Jane’s studio is in the foreground and Tony’s work place was the far end. It was here that I photographed for 10 days with a macro lens. Inspired by the plethora of colours, textures and subject matter, I had a blast! This was one of the few images I made with the 24-105 mm lens.
Jane’s tools I. Expressionist. (macro)
Jane’s tools II. Surrealist. (macro)
Jane’s tools III. Tubes of paint. Abstract. (macro)
2. There are No Limits to Creativity: Jane’s studio
The most important thing I have learned from studying art history, is that each art movement, in any medium, was the result of artists breaking away or abandoning the established traditions of their medium. Those brave and courageous artists so believed in their work, that they were prepared to risk their livelihoods.
Within the medium of photographic art, I feel that we photographers should also feel free to explore new avenues of expression, and not have one’s creativity suppressed by rules set out by any established organization. That is why I teach two photographic workshops; a 2-day workshop on “Freedom of Expression” and a 7-day workshop (with partner Dennis Ducklow) called “Develop Your Creative Vision”.
Creativity involves original thought and the creation of something unique. All artists, including photographers, should be encouraged to explore the creative process freely.
Below are but a few responses to a variety of items I found on the floor, on a desk, in storage racks, or on a wall. Some were made as single exposures, others as multiple exposures; some were made at fast shutter speeds, others at slow shutter speeds; and all involved some sort of camera movement. Also, many images are comprised of at least two different subjects.
Jane & Tony’s Studio I. (macro)
Jane & Tony’s Studio II. (macro)
Jane & Tony’s Studio III, (macro)
Jane & Tony’s Studio IV. (macro)
Jane & Tony’s Studio V. (macro)
Jane & Tony’s Studio VI. (macro)
Jane & Tony’s Studio VII. (macro)
Jane & Tony’s Studio VIII. (macro)
Jane at work in her studio
3. A Lifetime ago: Exploring nature and myself
One day while exploring in the studio I found an old print I had sent Jane in the early 1970’s. I couldn’t resist photographing it to share with you just for a laugh!
Being new to BC, I was excited to explore the wilderness at every opportunity. Having just bought my first canoe (a Chestnut cedar-canvas canoe), I made myself a new tent (I even tie-dyed it!), I headed out on my very first solo expedition with both.
4. A Favourite Spot in the Coast Mountains: Ape Lake
Last summer, four of us flew in to Ape Lake in the foothills of the Coast Mountains. High above where we camp, I have a favourite spot I go to at sundown to catch the evening light. It’s the perfect way to end the day; in quietness, in beauty, and in reflective thought.
Ape Lake I. Evening light.
Ape Lake II. Evening light.
Ape Lake III. Evening light.
Ape Lake IV. Evening light.
Ape Lake V. Evening light.
5. Real or Imagined: a recent blog post & response
The following is a copy of my recent Blog post.
Usually, we are mostly concerned with the material life, as opposed to the spiritual or the imaginary life.
The image below is a wood splitter. Most people see a wood splitter in terms of its functionality in everyday life; others may look at wood splitters in an imaginative way.
Artists, for example, might look at a wood splitter in a way that has never before been seen. Based on patches of tonal shapes and colours, the formal design of a wood splitter might completely disappear. Its new appearance might be based on an aesthetic in the artists imagination.
During my wildfire evacuation experience in 2017, I came across a wood splitter while out photographing. The above image is how I imagined the wood splitter that day.
Just as I was about to hit the newsletter ‘send’ button, a ‘ding’ sound notified me of a response I had just received to my recent blog. It was so encouraging, I thought I would share the blog post and response with you.
“To go beyond my habitual way of seeing, to discover Beauty afresh, is my goal in photography. It satisfies me in ways that nothing else can. Your photograph is a wonder – ful example of what I am aspiring to do”.
– Raymond Tremblay
If you enjoy my photography and Newsletters, you may wish to subscribe to my Blog. Comments are always welcome.