I have always believed that the lens from which we see our world is continually filtering ideas from life’s history and experiences. Maybe the matrix photography’s science, math and technology lie in, is a Petri dish for growing our ideas?
So many visual influencers try to explain how we should see and how we need to see. Fortunately there is no code, no formula, no rules. There is a gasp. The heart seizes a moment and the natural instinct sounds like snippety snap snap snap! The picture is done. The truths that are in our dreams quickly reveal our great powers of perception, and clarity.
I have been a photographer for 2/3rds of my life. Thousands of portraits, many thousands of snaps and unknown thousands of architecture images, have taught me that I have been living in a dream. I dream everyday of the photograph that I might discover. When I dream I borrow the dreams from the lives of others. I merge them into my own.
I remember reading about a jazz musician listening to the ocean waves as light poured into his rehab room. Locked on heroin, he allowed his mind to paint the walls with a dream. He lay on the beach next to a bikini clad woman. The sun-drenched day warmed his hallucinations. He passed his hands over her body caressing his mind thru the afternoon.
I remember a story about a 1950’s photo-shoot on a Southern California beach. A tall black musician strutted from the ocean to the sands draped with two white women on either arm. His golden saxophone slung over his neck catching the sunlight. The summer heat seemingly bends over the surface.
I remember the story of a budding Japanese photographer. He was commissioned to photograph the most famous man in Japan. The icon asked the young man what photograph would he like to make. The young photographer suggested that the icon take off all of his clothes and he would wrap a sailor’s rope over the entirety of his body.
These collective images are dreams that others have shared. They are among many dreams that have empowered me. My heart wants to to believe in something more. If there is no more, then there is not a photograph to be made.