Pictures not at an exhibition

Click on any picture to see a larger version.

Night Flight


Ducks on Kananook CreekI can’t paint or draw so I try to make paintings with my camera. Often angling, framing and exposing a shot is a visceral experience. Palpable. Making something, creating a picture that is more like how I see it and feel it than how it might actually be. Misty Morning on Kananook CreekSometimes I get a result that actually approaches what I see and feel. All too often I fail miserably to capture or create the vision that was so clear and strong in my mind’s eye and that makes me wonder if it is worth the effort of trying again.

It is only by trying again and again that achievement is possible. One only begins to really achieve in any endeavour when one is no longer bothered with the mechanics, technology or technique of the process.

Sunset Pier, Seaford, Victoria.Windswept Dune, Seaford, VictoriaI doubt if when Jascha Heifetz was playing he was concerned where he was stopping his strings; when Nureyev was dancing he was worrying about the line of his back when performing an entrechat huit, or when Claude Monet was painting his attention was focussed on his brush strokes.

Bruce Lee once said to me: “Technique? I have no technique. I don’t hit — ‘it’ hits all by itself.”

Late AfternoonI need to work more, read more, see more; to become so familiar with my tools that I don’t make the pictures — they make themselves.

All pictures shot with my Nikon D70. EXIF information should be intact on all pictures with all technical information.
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9 Responses to Pictures not at an exhibition

  1. What beautiful photos. They really capture the essence of Australia. It’s funny how I can see that now that I live on the other side of the world. I think I would have also said they were wonderful shots if I was still living in Sydney, but now I can look at them, appreciate them and draw from them the unmistakable air of Terra Australis.
    Love,
    TS xxxx

  2. Russell C says:

    Thank you for the kind words. Your comments made me smile and remember a book of photography called “A Different Light”. I can’t remember the author/photographer, but is was a collection of pictures of Australia that celebrated the unique light of this country: a different light that I did not appreciate until after spending so many years in Asia.
    I loved the light in South East Asia, particularly Thailand and Malaysia. It surprised me when I saw some of my first transparencies from my old, retired but still loved Minolta SRT-101. The rich hues and depth of saturation astounded me.
    I had allowed my eyes to adjust and see things as I expected them to be. Fortunately that camera and the film was dumb enough not to be able to compensate and saw things as they were.

  3. Russell C says:

    Addendum to the above: Coca-Cola (and most global soft-drink brand) use a variety of formulations for their various markets; more sugar, less sugar and so on.
    I believe that film manufacturers did something similar. I am pretty sure that Agfa did and probably the other majors like Kodak did, too. the Kodachrome you bought in Paris was not the same film you bought in Bangkok. I wonder what the digital equivalent might be? I am afraid the answer might be “automatic white balance” that tries to make everything look normal, whatever the hell that is.

  4. Becca says:

    I can see you are influenced by Monet. Lovely photos. Doesn’t matter that you “can’t paint or draw”. Photography when it is as beautifully composed as these is just as significant an art. Thank you for the beauty.

  5. Gwen says:

    You just possibly might be a better photographer
    Russell than you are a scribe. A picture is worth
    a thousand words? lol

  6. Russell C says:

    Becca, thank you for a beautiful comment and opening my eyes to a flattering association with Monet. I have not been consciously trying to mimic his vision but now I do see a his influence in these pictures. I had the privilege of seeing the largest assembly of his paintings from galleries and collection around the world. Overwhelming. Please visit again soon.

  7. Russell C says:

    Gwen, is not a scribe one who copies manuscripts or takes dictation? I must confess I am very bad at both those tasks. I am not sure if that makes me a better or worse photographer. I know it feels good when I make a picture that is close to what I intend and see in my mind. Thank you for visiting and commenting.

  8. Russell C says:

    I just read this item again for the first time in half a year. It is so embarrassingly preachy and pompous I want to delete it, or at least change it, but I suppose that would be dishonest somehow. Like trying to change my own past. By letting it stand I might learn something. Better late than never?

  9. Linda Smith says:

    Outstanding work, Russell. I had no idea your talents were so diverse. Would love to see more. In looking at them, I was reminded of an interview I once read. He was a noted photographer for a well-known national magazine, and I’m embarrassed to say I remember the names of neither. It was so long ago.

    His superior gave him an assignment to get photos of a specific mountain range for the upcoming issue. He packed his gear, and off he went, only to find upon his arrival that the entire area was blanketed in fog. But orders are orders, and despite the defeat he felt after such a long trip, he fulfilled his responsibility. He clicked every view from every possible angle and went home to develop the picutures, hoping for even a few that would be deemed fit for publishing.

    To his astonishment, they were some of the most breath-taking photos he had ever shot.

    I see that you have given birth to that same magic and mystery in your work. How rewarding it must be. Hats off to you.

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