"Where Shore set out to document, more contemporary photographers seek to mythologize the ordinary, to place a grand metaphor before the content itself. Christy Lange describes American Surfaces as falling “somewhere between a ‘visual diary’ and a social document - a record of ‘what the age we were living in looked like.’ It is both about the culture that Shore encountered and his encounter with that culture.” Blogosphere and Instagram road trip photography more often than not swings to the far end of that divide, choosing to exhibit a modern youth culture without engaging critically with it.”
From Westward Bound: Issues With Road Trip Photography, a very good essay by Matthew Flores. Read the rest of it here. He talks about a lot of the things I’ve been thinking about recently and he says it a lot better than I ever could.
"The quiet photographer respects and trusts his subject — and for that matter, himself. By maintaining a discreet emotional distance from his subject, he allows it to tell its own story, and as the conduit for this story, is content, indeed insistent upon subordinating his own "story," if you like. The quiet photographer does not lack a voice nor emotional engagement, but deliberately relegates it and allows it to emerge through the subject, rather than imposing it from the outside."
Gerry Badger, from The Pleasures of Good Photographs
That is a lovely compliment, thank you very much! :)
"To be an artist is an achievement, but you have to keep it in perspective. I’m not trying to undersell art. I think it’s valuable, but I think it’s overly revered. It is a valuable thing, but no more valuable than being a good schoolteacher, or being a good doctor. The problem is that being creative has glamour. People in the business end of film always say, I want to be a producer, but a creative producer. Or a woman I went to school with who said, Oh yes, I married this guy. He’s a plumber but he’s very creative. It’s very important for people to have that credential. Like if he wasn’t creative, he was less."
Woody Allen, from The Art of Humor (The Paris Review, 1995)