There’s nothing worse than a blank canvas. The painter Cezanne once said “It’s so fine, and yet so terrible, to stand in front of a blank canvas.” (I’m not sure he does that justice. I think i’d lean more towards this quote by Hannah Kent:
“People speak of the fear of the blank canvas as though it is a temporary hesitation, a trembling moment of self-doubt. For me it was more like being abducted from my bed by a clown, thrust into a circus arena with a wicker chair, and told to tame a pissed-off lion in front of an expectant crowd.”
Constraints are the savior. Seeing what you can do given some constraints (some technical: your smartphone will have somewhat limited resolution and focal length; some arbitrary: no cropping, black and white only…) Photography is poetry at its core, and some of the joy comes from working inside the proscribed form. Think limericks. Think haiku.
BTW: the parlor game of assembling parts of the drawing is called “Consequences” and is akin to the more general game known as “Exquisite Corpse” (not “delicious monster” but i love the mistake). https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Exquisite_corpse
A few selects from my shooting “game” at 40mph more or less, as i was driving around with friends in Nicaragua (2016). They sorta give the impression of intimacy but really are a snapshot of the facade of the roads.
THIS EPISODE’S ASSIGNMENT
Textures. Look around at the textures you pass. Grab pictures. See if you can push yourself compositionally. Maybe see what happens in b&w, so the texture is stronger than the colors. Share them on our Neomodern FB page (or tag them #everydayphotography in instagram).
As you think about texture, realize it’s not always a close up of a flat surface — notice texture as it wraps itself across all sorts of shaped objects; and it may not only be a close up, some textures reveal themselves at a distance. Just make the texture a key element of your image. Here are some screenshots of mine:
Suzanne’s Instagram (@sfritzhanson)
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