Friday, December 6, 2013

Poetry, Passion and Photographs

I took a photography class this semester at Dine Community college.  I am still stuggling with the technology and I have learned a lot about the craft.

I came away from the course impressed by the similarities between the craft of poetry and the craft of photography.

Light, shape, line, texture, compostion, rythym, meaning and metaphore.  It is all there in a poem or a photograph.

One thoughtful photographic image should do what a poem does in a few well chosen words; evoke emotion and meaning for the viewer or the reader.  We should want to return again and again to a well composed poem or image for its mystical impact.

I have been espcially influenced by the poetic nature of the works of photographers such as Keith Carter, Eddie Soloway, Sam Abell and Victor Masayesva, Jr.  to name a few.

When I look at Iris, Isle Royale National Park, Michigan by Soloway, I think of Basho(1644-94:

The temple bell stops-
but the sound keeps coming
Out of flowers.  (translated by Robert Bly)

Just as a poet works and reworks the words on the page,  with attention to each sound, the rythym and meaning, a photographer studies his subject in all light from all angles, each part.

I am fascinated by the old trucks broken down at the end of town in an alley in Silverton, Colorado.  I am drawn to the faded color and petina of rust and I have taken many photogarphs of these old vehicles run into the

 I am interested in every angle and each part, the stories they tell.  I have revisted this subject over and over again as I would in a poem.   My writer's eye is similar to my photographic eye as I pay attention to the details that fascinate me.

My passion for these old trucks turned into one of my projects for the landscape assignment in my course this semester and eventually won an honorable mention at the Dine College ArtWalk.

As with my poetry I still work to perfect this craft, look for creative, evocative ways to view the world, express what I see as important, reflect upon it, bring meaning to a subject and pass that on to my reader or viewer.