Sometimes images come out of nowhere and other times there is a clear line of development. I thought I would share with you one of those moments. The story of the one image and the choices that were made along the way. Continue reading Choices
This time of the year it’s almost impossible not to think about the fact that the year is coming to an end with Christmas right around the corner and the New Year quickly following. This time of the year inspires me think about new possibilities, maybe even more this year because I have, like all of us in the collective, been selecting my crop of twelve good photographs for 2015. My selection ended up with only ten best pictures for 2015. Once I had finished my book I started to long for a new one, a new beginning, with new possibilities. Maybe I should start a new project when the new year begins?
I have done yearly projects before, so I’m not in the mood for another 365- project (taking one picture a day for a year); that isn’t me right now. But I would like to make a well-defined project and I want that project to be a challenge!
My first thought is I should start where I am. I have looked through my work and tried to define what I have been doing during 2015. My goal has been to see if there is an embryo of a project in my previous work that I can evolve to a yearly-project for 2016. There seems to be something their, but I can’t decide on which idea I should go for. Should I do more of the abstract toy-photography that I like so much but that no one else seems to understand that I create on purpose? Or should I go for the family project that I have been working with since November? Or should I think of something totally new? I can’t decide! Maybe I ought to create a series of pictures with Shelly’s robot, that I love and adore? Maybe it could create a response to the work she’s already has done and most of us are familiar with? As I have already stated, I can’t decide which direction should I go in.
I want to explore new grounds, learn new things because just as Reiterlied said in a comment ” One of my biggest fear is to stop learning.” Right now I don’t know which direction I should choose and why. I’m caught in indecision; I don’t know which project I should pursue.
I am sure this is not the response you are expecting from yesterdays post Confessions of an AFOL – Part 1 by Pinar. I think the comments on this post cover a lot of territory and you should give them a read. It is not for me to criticize LEGO, I generally vote with my check book, so my thoughts took a different direction.
I enjoy many aspect of this worldwide toy photography community and I am blessed to have so many international friends who willingly share their lives and cultures with me. It has been a wonderful and enriching experience. Occasionally I get a glimpse of my own country through foreign eyes and honestly, it always makes me feel a little uncomfortable. I just have to read The Short News (which originates in Australia) for some cringe worthy story emanating from the US.
Yesterdays post by Pinar (who lives in Turkey), really got me thinking: If LEGO is a Danish company with a world wide global fan base, why are so many of their sets based on pop culture and entertainment products that originate from the USA / Hollywood? Like Pinar, I have been feeling lackluster about sets like Back to the Future, The Simpsons and now Scooby Doo. I am not a fan of the entertainment / pop culture that the US spews out on a daily basis and it makes me sad that it casts such a long shadow over the LEGO corporation.
Sure licensing is not new to LEGO and many attribute licensing the Star Wars franchise as key to turning the company around financially. No one can deny the success of the Harry Potter or the Lord of the Rings sets either. But what about the Lone Ranger Movie sets? Sure these gave us Tonto, one of the coolest mini figures ever, but is that enough?
I want to thank Me2 for holding down the blog while I was distracted with real life. I certainly had grand ideas about posting once or twice during my travel week, but that never actually happened. What did happen was I practiced my craft…every day.
I went into this travel week with high expectations. With our group show just around the corner I was hoping for just one more killer image to include. As the week progressed I realized that the most important task at hand was not the perfect image but practicing my craft. I took the focus off the perfect image and focused on practicing what I love to do: macro toy photography.
My daughters piano teacher once said to her: “Practice makes permanence.” While this seems pretty obvious for learning the piano, it also works for photography. With practice you get faster at sizing up any outdoor location and lighting situation as a potential backdrop. I have also learned which mini figures work best for me; not every mini figure is created equally. Hopefully with more practice in the coming year those killer images will become more frequent.
As we move into 2015 I could talk about high flying new years resolutions, but honestly I think that simply continuing to practice my craft and push the boundaries of what I have already put into place will be challenge enough.
Did you make any photography new year’s resolutions?
If you did, is there anything we can do to support you?
So as you’ve surmised +Me2, Avanaut and I are excited about our upcoming #stuckinplastic exhibition. For a variety of reasons this is a big deal for each of us. Of course it is always risky when you put yourself forward artistically, and this situation is no different.
On IG the other day I came across a comment that touched a nerve:
“I feel like a jerk posting images of awesome things with the shiddyest (sic) camera. I love those high quality shots just as much as any other Lego fan. But at the end of the day, it’s just a bunch of minifigure pictures. I’m not trying to get the most expensive camera award.”
This comment comes from a person who identifies themselves as a “Master Builder” and while I don’t agree with their point of view, there is a kernel of truth in his statement. It directly addresses that little voice in the back of my head that holds all my doubts.
I know I will have to answer this question directly to the patrons of the Bryan Ohno Gallery and to any potential collectors. What makes this work worthy of purchase? Since the subject is a common household object, can’t anyone do this?
I’ll be very clear that I never set out to take the art world by storm and make “whimsical, powerful, iconoclastic and often unconventional art which speaks to, challenges, and provokes discussion about cultural, political, and social issues and the role art plays in our evolving global community.” (This is actual language taken from a gallery invite I received.) This is not me and it never has been. What I do strive to create is art for Lego fans. I want to make art that any fan would be proud to display on their wall and so they can tastefully let their freak flag fly. I want to bridge the gap between the casual fan and those incredibly creative master builders. And if my images touch a deeper emotional truth along the way, then I couldn’t be happier.
I think the Lego universe is big enough for all of us to play in; each in their own way be true.
~ xxsjc Does this fellow Instagram user have a point, is it just a mini figure picture? If you don’t think it is just a pretty picture, how would you describe the photos taken by the members of #stuckinplastic? If you missed out on signing up for the book exchange and would like to still participate, please contact us immediately.
This little guy was created from Lego Space: Building the Future by Peter Reid. He has proven to be very popular.