Sunday, December 12, 2010

Statement for My Final

Sunday, December 12, 2010

~Artist Statement~

The forever-asked question; “What is a photograph?” Is it simply an image? Is it nothing more than a pattern of light and shadow? Is it life or a representation of life? Is it some kind of conceptual treasure map? Is it just ink on a page or data in a series? Most will say that a photograph is all of these things and more.

So, the question then becomes instead… “What is a photograph to me?”

The great secret of my life is that I am truly a broken person. I am the fracture personified. I am manic-depressive. I have brutally long bouts with insomnia. I am constantly disappointed with my own incoherent and chaotic thought structures, with my lack of desires and ambitions. I am awkward with people and tend to burn my bridges all too frequently.

The only thing that keeps my incessant and rambling thoughts at bay is photography. When my hand is on the camera, when I allow myself to be actually aware, I suddenly navigate within the landscape as though it were a dance. I glide forward and back. I twist this way and that. I quietly hum to myself as I go though the computations of angles and compositions. Then CLICK! I have it. It is mine. I go home. I download, modify and, if I am happy with the results, I publish. Only then am I able to fall asleep easily.

So, once more I ask, what is a photograph to me? And the answer is: a photograph the key to my sanity.

My mind is a parking garage, empty in the dead of night. Everything within has become insoluble, abstract. I have become the husk of something that was once useful, but now consists of nothing more than dull slabs of concrete, accidentally leaked oil and sickly-yellow fluorescent lights.

I have no family to speak of. I have no money in the bank. I have no home that matters. I have no person to love. But, I do have a camera.

And that makes all the difference in the world.


Dan Binmore

This was an important piece of writing for me. I also am bipolar, I often feel broken, what is me and what matters for me changes frequently. However, I have had experiences of absolute liquid-crystalline beauty that I think few experience. What has got me through is an interest in Eastern spiritual practices in which being absolutely awake to the moment as it is forms who you are. If this isn't the exact process of good photography I do not know what else it could be.

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