Daily Dose of Imagery - zooming light trails (Dec. 14, 2004).
Sam Javanrouh is a good photographer. And a preeminent photoblogger. I was turned on to his site, Daily Dose of Imagery, by virtue of some shots he had done last year in Iran. I was turned on to this shot, zooming light trails because it reminds me of the first shot I took where I thought "hey, I didn't completely f--k this up. Maybe this could be a hobby for me."
In 2001, I went to Las Vegas. It was one of my first real vacations after becoming a lawyer, and it was the first vacation where I had a camera. I bought my first SLR just before the trip, along with a simple lens and tripod. I went out, late one night (an irrelevant detail in a city like Las Vegas), and set up the tripod on a traffic median on the Strip. I set the exposure for 30 seconds, and waited for a light to turn green. The second it did, I fired off a shot.
Long smooth lines of headlights melted across the frame, just beneath the clearly lettered signs of The Mirage and The Venetian casinos. I love that shot. It's my fish story, I suppose.
Sam takes a different tack with zooming light trails. Rather than shooting the long exposure on a tripod, he shot while walking, giving the light trails a jerky quality. It has a sort of "I had too much at the bar" kind of feel to it (so I'm told; ahem).
Chromogenic.net - Fogport (Dec. 13, 2004).
Justin Oullette is one of my favorite photobloggers out there. I'm going to be featuring one of his shots for Behind The Lens, which will be a thorough discussion of the process behind a great shot. In any event, if Sam Javanrouh's zooming light trails is defined by chaos and motion, Justin Oullette's Fogport is defined by stability. The fog softens the light, giving the picture a density that I enjoy. Of course, fog is considered to be an archtype of concealment, and I like the curiosity (and the hint of dangerous conditions) behind what is "out there."
DailySnap.Com - Who Are You? (Dec. 14, 2004).
Jessyel Ty Gonzalez's Who Are You? is a lucky third for this set of images. This picture captures a similar sort of light density as Fogport. However, it is not as static as that image. The posture of the central figure conveys motion, as though he had suddenly turned away from the photographer.
There's a certain shyness of subway riders that I'm reminded of when I look at this shot. In the subway - whether in New York City, Boston, or Washington, DC - I've always experienced a sense of privacy that had nothing to do with how much space separated me from my fellow riders. I would slip my headphones on - typically, I listened to Radiohead, the perfect music for subway-riding - and push out the world. I would push out my classes, the smell of the guy sitting behind me, the exhaustion I felt. All of it. All but the rocking of the cars and the ebb and flow of the music in my headphones.
By shooting this, Jessyel conveyed this notion. However, he also invaded that privacy. Interesting little Schrodinger's Cat-like delimma, no?