October 2011 Archives

Reading Leaves



We are quickly delighted or even intrigued by the camera's power to benignly render the abnormality of the mundane or familiar. Just as entertaining is the readily apparent effort to create visual drama that fully replaces the recognizable with the unrecognizable. But in some modes of photography, subject matter will still routinely trump any inventions of the picture's composition -- competing with the picture's own desire to be more valued because it made something that wasn't already there.

Becoming truly familiar with photographs quickly leads to more frequent expectations that, for certain subjects, the effects of photography's abstractions or constructions will simply be the "normal" language of description. Once this happens, the effects become effectively "transparent", and the viewer immediately interprets ("reads") the effects as indicators, indices (or as the French might have it, signs) of the "subject". This is when the picture becomes invisible, in the same way that good direction or teaching recedes to leave the performance alone in the foreground.

In the back and forth of the visible and invisible, the self-assertive picture then moves to visually comment on the performance that it orchestrated in the first place.





copyright 2010 Malcolm Ryder



Tomorrow morning





DelmerGates-IMG_2648Abw.jpgCopyright 20111 Malcolm Ryder





Hawaii-SkyBoards-IMG_0135f.jpgCopyright 2010 Malcolm Ryder