Hey, it’s really been a while so here’s an update on what I’ve been doing lately. Mostly I’ve just been working and taking photos, which has definitively become my standard outlet for creation in the last year or so. Most of the time I post them on my Tumblr. In general, my “studio space” is non-existent these days; I develop film in my bathroom and I scan/archive in my office (a.k.a. the bedroom). I think this lack of studio space has definitely pushed me more and more in a photographic direction. I see myself as a kind of street artist/performer that uses the outside world as my playground and the space where I get to realize my creative potential. I like to think that I’m not just capturing images but documenting objects and scenarios that have a very temporal existence in space. I like to document and claim (appropriate, steal?!) these objects and moments I see out in the world as my own. It’s similar to the process that Andy Goldsworthy employs by using photography to document his temporary sculptures that exist out in the natural world. In his case, he actually makes the objects while I just find them.
So there is a two-part process to the actual creation of my work, first is as mentioned above, I go out and shoot. This is also, in my opinion, the easier part of the two-part process. Basically, I just walk around and take snaps of shit I think is interesting. There’s no need for patience when it comes to the creative process, no drawing or painting things out and checking on form and minute details to make sure everything looks right. If a photo works, it works, and if not – delete. This isn’t to say that I just walk around randomly snapping photos; for the most part I use film which costs a bit of money and helps to restrain myself. I have a limit and so I have to be creative within the bounds of that limit. In my opinion, this is the best way to be creative anyways… too much freedom breeds a lack of creativity. Anyway, when I’m out taking photos it’s a very intuitive process, I don’t think too much about what I’m shooting, although the more photos I take the more recognizable to me certain symbols or objects have become before I capture them.
So, here comes the second part, the less “intuitive” process: organizing/focusing my work in order to define meaning within it. This is seriously the hardest thing for me to accomplish. Back in the days of drawing and painting I had the meaning down before the image and my job was to make something physical to promote understanding of a complex subject. Now I’m having to find focus within such a complex web of images that represent so many different ideas at once. It’s like looking at a cloud from a distance, you can see it as this sort of fluffy soft thing in the sky, and it makes sense. But the closer you get, new forms appear, it starts to take different shape, the edges are soft and the cloud starts to become vague and once you get inside of it it’s just one big grey mass. That’s where I’m at right now and I would like to be able to come out of the cloud in order to define a little better what my work is about and how I want it to be displayed. This may be more clear cut for other photographers out there, but I rarely go out shooting with a project in mind.
To be honest, that last paragraph reminded me of the very mundane fact that I’m also constantly trying to make sense out of my life. I mean, just replace the word “work” with “life” and you can understand the scope of this massive knot I’m trying to untangle. Or in the very least you get a pretty decent psychological evaluation. Man I’m fucked…