Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Reading Assignment Blogpost - Chapter 4, Something and Nothing (due 10/24)

In the comment section below write a 200 word minimum response to Chapter 4 "Something and Nothing" Suggested topics include, but are not limited to:

Which essay from the assigned chapter spoke to your own experience the most?  Summarize the main points of the essay and give a personal anecdote that elaborates on why this article spoke to you. Which essay made you think about photography in a new way, or spoke to experiences you may not have been as familiar with?  Did any of the work completely confuse you?  Which photographer(s) highlighted are you the most interested in?  Again, summarize the article and explain why this essay has reshaped your ideas about photography.
Shelby, Sarah, and Nikki will be leading the classroom discussion on Tuesday 10/24


  1. These pictures resonated with my inner being. I felt so calm when I was looking at them, and if being calm and content wasn’t my chief emotion, then it was wonder, and sometime both. There were so many artists and pictures that seized my attention that it is hard to just highlight a few.
    This chapter emphasized the notion of capturing a very brief moment and Gabriel Orozco captures this idea perfectly. His piece “Breath on Piano” is the faultless example of documenting a moment that lasts only a few seconds and then in gone. The moisture left from the breath of a person on the top of the piano is a wonderful illustration of human interaction and the affects left behind.
    Visually speaking, I love Uta Barth and her use of light and objects that are familiar to the everyday. Something as simple as a silhouette of a window along with the diffused light and subtle colors framed in by each pane can create a wonderful picture. I also think the genius behind this piece is due in part to that it is something that we look at every day and we are looking at it as if through baby eyes, for the first time.
    Lastly, Sabine Hornig’s “Window with Door” beautifully ties all of these concepts introduced together. She uses sculpture along with photography to deepen the meanings and effects of her work. The use of reflection and a window (which begs to be looked through) invites us to recall memories of the places we have been to in the past. The “faded” look of the layered pictures of places resounds within me the feelings of fondness and of longing to be in, or get away from, that remembered place/moment.

  2. I really enjoy still life photography. I have messed with it over the years ever since I got my first camera, and some of my favorite images I’ve taken are still life photos. I love how it captures the moment, like in Peter Fischli and David Weiss’s pictures of balancing objects. They are so fun to look at and examine. I like the moments where it looks like it should fall apart any second, but the still life captures it forever in a balanced state.
    James Welling’s Light Source series was also very interesting. I like how he would sometimes use the backdrop as the actual subject. You cannot always tell what exactly the subject is because of the angles of the camera and how he positions the lighting. You are left to guess what it could really be.
    Jeff Wall is a photographer who’s work I have always enjoyed. His still life Diagonal Composition no. 3 is lacking the cast that his usual pictures have, but it is still telling a story. How interesting can an image of a nasty floor with a mop be? Cotton points out that this is part of the image’s job, to bring up questions such as these.

  3. Something or Nothing
    I did not connect with much of this chapter. I get the artists concept of what they may have been trying to convey to the viewer, however, nothing really clicked. I did see some correlation with this chapter and our Project 5, with this said, there are two photos that did stick out.

    Wim Wonders (119) Wall in Paris, Texas. This reminds of the movie Matrix. The small tiny window that Trinity must twist her body through to evade the cyber-intelligence goons. I have photographed old, worn down buildings myself. I find that these buildings with their exposed "underbellies" cause one to pause and wonder, What was this place? Who was here? Why has the building reached this level of decay?

    Manfred Willmann (123), part of his, Das Land Series. Photographing the season is something else I do. I have gone and taken photos of places I like to frequent in the Spring and Summer. I will photography a spot and return to take photos of the same spot in the Fall and Winter. Its' like making a record of the changes made by nature. What happens to the foliage and the beauty of color when the crisp bite of Fall and the chill of Winter set upon the beauty.

  4. This chapter was more my speed. I like the idea of non human things that are pretty ordinary but after being photographed can become extraordinary. I loved Wim Wenders’ Wall in Paris, Texas, 2001. I really like the cracks in the road and the expose pain of the wall. I definitely like this chapter more than the previous. I feel like it relates more to the work that I’ve been doing then other chapters. I also like Tracy Baran’s Dewy 2000. The simplicity of a cup on your windowsill is magnified in the picture with the lighting in the colors. Manfred Willman piece is representing Mother Nature in its simplest form but the artist makes it beautiful. There’s not much in this chapter that I don’t like or understand. I guess The pieces I don’t appreciate as much is Roe Ethridge’s The Pink Bow and Wolfgang Tillmans’ Suit, 1997. I guess it’s just not something I would see myself Photographing so I don’t really relate to it as much. I also would not have thought to take pictures of items like this but now at least it’s in the back of my mine. I might try some of these shots in the future. Over all in this chapter has been my favorite and I love the beauty in the simplicity of an everyday object that shows it in a way that you don’t look at it everyday.

  5. The essay that interested me the most was “Dewy” because of how natural the picture looks, and how everything in the picture all fits together. I also really enjoy the natural lighting within the picture, as well as the detail in the glass cup. The contrast in color is really good to look at, it is just a very satisfying picture to me.
    The picture that made me think of photography in a new way was the one about Diagonal Composition by Jeff Wall because the picture seems like an everyday life kind of picture of a janitors work within an old administrative building, but all the angles and colors mesh really well together. It seems so simple, but yet all the complexity is taken care of like all the technicalities of photography.
    The work that confused me the most would be the picture by Laura Letinsky, I understand how interesting how everything is laid out after eating but I see more of the magic coming from the colors she chose to work with. I think the picture is a different way of looking at culture and brings up how to work with certain subjects, and different areas of everyday life.

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  7. Still life photography is great! I think it’s something that most people can do if they get the concept correctly. I personally have a hard time taking still life photos because they have a lot to do with lighting in my opinion. You can take the exact same photo add good lighting to it and it becomes a goddest in the photography world. Uta Barth was one of the photographer that caught my attention. Her work was taking along with everyday activity and what you see on a normal day. Like I have stated in the past lighting has a big part to do with photography. Looking over David Weiss’s photos where very intriguing. Everything was balanced and any slight movement you know everything would fall apart or might break I really liked looking at those images. All the photographers each had a different vibe to each other in a way that I cannot explain or even being to express.