My wife told me today that she thought I was lucky because I am happy and I like what I do so it doesn't seem like work. True that. Lately I've felt overwhelmed. I have too many irons in the fire. I love to do everything I do, just not enough time to do it(and I don't know how to be adequately compensated to hire help...or know how to have help....well help!) I do love making pictures, seeing something--or a part of something and interpreting it in some fashion with a camera(or cell phone). I've been embarking on several new projects at work and even personally. The iphone has brought me a sense of the sketch again, something to record quickly without feeling the pressure of having to have a finished product. I feel this will help me see the world in a more rounded way and perhaps in a way that I did 25 years ago when I was learning how pictures can really...really show us something about ourselves. I am lucky to have found this out about myself for sure. One of my side projects are these iphone sketches. These are taking on many different forms, but one series of images that is beginning to develop are looking at abstract looking small areas of reality and trying to record them. I've post a few here and expect that this series will be quite rewarding to me as I go on. These are all taken through the hipstamatic program which gives a finished/processed look to the photographs and emulates many old school photographic devices/ films and processes---they also sometimes give the appearance of age. So they are not direct recording of reality by any means, but using the tool knowing what it does is becoming a fun means of making a different type of work. How serious it becomes, well...it'll be as serious as I approach everything--serious--but fun! Photographs by Richard Sayer
I have well over 100 disc of saved stuff--actually I'd guess its well over 500 discs of saved stuff. Today, I was sort of tired of posting hipstamatic pictures here on this blog and wanted to post something new. Most of my newest work is for clients that we haven't discussed sharing yet so those are off limits... I decided it would be fun to blindly reach into the pox and put out a disc and find one image to share. I admit I had to pick the third disc because I picked out a genealogy disc from my mom that I can't open on my machine and then picked out a disc that had music archived, but the third disc had a bunch of stuff from years ago on it. This picture I took while working at the newspaper. It was from an assignment that I was sent to when a call came over the scanner that this neighborhood had a fe calls to the animal control officer about a cat stuck in the sewer. When I showed up the manhole cover was off and the officer was climbing out. When he saw me I think he had this look on his face that was something along the lines of 'oh crap--I was going to give up but I can't now because the newspaper guy is here!' After several attempts of coaxing this tired and hungry kitten had failed he had this idea of snagging him with a golf ball retriever and it worked. I then followed this very tired little kitten back to the Humane Society to photograph it getting cleaned up, inspected and fed. This picture was part of a photo story and slideshow we did on the whole thing. It was one of those times I felt odd that I'd cover something like this in the first place, but proud that I was able to sorta hang out a witness the whole thing unfold. In the process tell the story of the life around us and the people that do things that really go unnoticed, but really are important. Its a cool thing being able to take pictures of the life around me! Photograph by Richard Sayer from 2006. I'm not sure where this kitty ended up, but it was adopted!
Thanks to Eric Reinagel who unearthed the slideshow link!http://static.cnhi.zope.net/flashpromo/meadvilletribune/flashpromo/video/cat_rescue/index.html
I like to think of these as sketches and just notes to share quick and easy on facebook. The form will take on a look that might even influence so post-processing decisions with the 'real' pictures I took with my dslr---which will ultimately be better photographs. I'll post some of those down the road when I finalize the toning etc..... For now its exciting to be able to look at these and reflect on what I can do and what I did do to make my images stronger. SayerMotter Photographs by Richard Sayer.
I'd say maternity photographs are among the most serious pictures we can make. This is a very special and delicate time for mom and dad. But an overly serious photo shoot can be dauntingly dull and result in stiff awkward photographs. So we laugh inbetween...why not! This allows our serious faces to be more natural and real when its time. The 'how about a serious look' statement brings just that--a serious 'look'. Not serious thought. So we engage in conversation and all good conversation has a combination of serious and jovial in the mix. Today I am photographing Nerissa and Lee for the second time, not because the first time went poorly, on the contrary, it went very very well, but we've since had other ideas and are now only a few weeks from the big day. So today I'm hoping for a few more laughs and some more fun and some more serious portraits of this very wonde
'Somedays you eat the bear, somedays the bear eats you!' Today wasn't a stellar day for me behind the lens of my nikon. I shot a parade, a trail and some little wrestlers and when I got done and was looking over my pictures I felt almost as if I didn't take any of them. I won't say this is the first time this has happened to me, but it was the first in a long time. I don't think I took a photograph today--other than my fun sketches with my phone. I guess it happens, but I always try to live by the idea that you're only as good as your last photograph---a philosophy that works to keep us striving to make good photographs each time we press in the shutter---there is no such thing as 'only a snapshot!' I wrote on my student's syllabus this semester that 'every photograph should be considered.' Today I needed to remind myself of this I think--though I felt like I was trying to consider each image--the results seem to argue that perhaps I didn't. phone photos by Richard Sayer.
I like the look of a profile with a hat. We weren't too sure about the stars on the fedora, probably should be a plain hat. The fun part about trying things out is being able to see how certain things work or not. I tend to think the stars don't distract, but they do draw attention because of their graphic shape up at the top. The proximity to the face, which is the focal point is perhaps too close to be a comfortable design enhancer. I talk about this all the time with design---entry points---points where your eye goes to first or second or third on a page are important for eye movement across the page or composition. Clumping entry points together isn't always sound in principal--in fact it is often just not good at all(though admittedly just saying this makes me want to find a way to make it work!) The key to driving a viewer's eye to your focal point is to not have confusion within the complexities of your design. Simple is often better, though too simple leads to no one taking notice or staying with the image. So I'll do a little thinking about this star hat before we use it again--there is a place for it for sure--we'll find it. SayerMotter Photograph by Richard Sayer.
I like this sorta thing--I really do. Little reminders out there. Someday I'm going to stop and find out exactly why this sign is along the side of the road right outside of Jamestown Pa.. This is now the third time I've photographed it--the first time I stopped--the other times were while working on my 'drive by shooting' series where I just hold the camera up as I drive by something and just click and see what I got later! This time I stopped, got out of my car and walked up to the sign. I didn't realize before that the barbed wire was there or that there was a ditch and a steep hill to contend with! Funny the things you take notice of if you take the time to stop. Photograph by Richard Sayer.
This immediate - no worries style photography with the iphone is liberating in many ways. I've thinking a lot about what work done with a phone camera can mean. How will it work to be serious with it. I've really begun thinking of it as a note taking exercise---a sketchbook and I've always found sketchbook work to be some of my most important work---not for a finished product, but as an observation and examination into an idea. So I keep seeing these abstract shapes and lights and patterns and am compelled to snap a quick shot for my 'sketch-book'. If nothing else its a pretty good exercise in composition and balance--and that is always good to hone and practice. Here a some abstractions that caught my eye today. Photographs by Richard Sayer. PS Thank you Deb Barnhart for the painted bubblewrap today!!! Very nice of her to bring that by for me after I comment how much I loved one of he photographs from the Creative Expressions of Art Facebook page. Her photograph of the painted bubblewrap is much better than mine below!
Trying to build a variety of looks and styles for a modeling portfolio usually requires working with several different photographers in several different areas. I am trying to find new looks all the time for my clients and friends who are trying to build a strong working portfolio. A big thing these days is retro styles and several photographers are working with make-up folks to create 40's and 50's style pin-up. I haven't been able to wrap my brain around that style to do myself, but I do like some of the old holleywood glammour stuff and this recent iphone with hipstamatic app with its old school look has given me some ideas to -sorta anyway' get into this retro look a little--perhaps trying to learn a style of my own---though I'm not sure exactly where it will go--I think its worth exploring what this new tool will do--and perhaps if I start using outside filters and other techniques to incorporate with the phone app....????? well we'll see! SayerMotter Photograph by Richard Sayer.