Because each one of us forgets different things, a photo, more than a painting, may change its meaning according to who is looking at it - John Berger
My father developed his snapshots in the laundry at the back of our suburban house. He showed me the basics and gave me my first camera, a Minolta viewfinder with a brown leather case. It was actually his and he just lent it to me. The first serious photos I took were on a hitch-hiking trip round Tasmania with two uni friends. 1966, black & white film. I loved those prints, created later in the home darkroom. But somehow they've been lost. Then I saved for a Pentax Spotmatic SP, maybe the best camera I ever owned. It was stolen in 1970. So dad gave me his Olympus OM-2 when he upgraded to a newer model. I still have that camera, having spent maybe thousands of dollars on darkroom equipment, film and chemicals, and lab development/printing.
Now I use a Sony Nex-5 and an Olympus U-Tough, as well as an iPad mini for home photography. With a drawer full of other digital cameras in reserve back home. But here, right now, is a collection of some of my own photos as well as links to photographers and images which I have found interesting and even inspiring. Click, follow, look and see. As my old friend Andrew from our architecture student days said, If you want to see you have to look, and as Errol Morris says, "Believing is Seeing".
So here, now - an eclectic collection of images, texts and significance. The photos hint at the contents of the various sectors of the site - roam around and enjoy!
Start with my "Featured Photo" at left, a montage of memories of our time living in the historic city of Leiden. That's what you can do with software, and could always do more painstakingly in the darkroom - create an image that doesn't actually exist because it's composed of things you remember seeing.
And then a second feature: Wet afternoon in East Keilor - what is it showing? A muted range of indistinct shapes, a drain and a gutter. Where are the people, does anyone live in East Keilor? We can do anything with images because they're basically imaginary.
Also here you'll find links to some of my other projects, such as creating Hacktintosh computers.
Because a photograph quotes rather than translates it is said that the camera cannot lie. It cannot lie because it prints directly. (The fact that there were and are faked photographs is, paradoxically, a proof of this. You can only make a photograph tell an explicit lie by elaborate tampering, collage, and re-photographing. You have in fact then ceased to practise photography. Photography in itself has no language to it which can be turned.)
And yet photographs can be, and are, massively used to deceive and misinform. We are surrounded by photographic images which constitute a global system of misinformation: the system known as publicity, proliferating consumerist lies. The role of photography in this system is revealing.
The lie is constructed before the camera. A "tableau" of objects and figures is assembled. This "tableau" uses a language of symbols (often inherited, as I have pointed out elsewhere, from the iconography of oil painting), an implied narrative and, frequently, some kind of performance by models with a sexual content. This "tableau" is then photo-graphed.
It is photographed precisely because the camera can bestow authenticity upon any set of appearances, however false. The camera does not even lie when it is used to quote a lie. And so, this makes the lie appear more truthful.
- John Berger, Ways of Seeing Full text here
We should also ask: "How does the non-stop, daily flood of images impact our thoughts, memories, desires, dreams—and our very conception of reality?"
A fascinating, challenging video interview with photographer/philosopher Max de Esteban addresses this fundamental question. It can be found here, at Lens Culture.
- Right, another featured image: In the Escher Museum, Den Haag
Lue is a village near Mudgee.
You can see and read the word, but you have to hear it before you can say it.
Just so, you have to look in order to see.
The internet features numerous free and cheap web galleries, some of which host the Tigerulze collection. The main ones are here - click on the image for the link, opens in a new window.
Photography deals exquisitely with appearances, but nothing is what it appears to be – Duane Michals
A Tumblr compendium of great images - look here, includes many classic and famous photographers.
Yuma's Flickr feed is here, & you'll find her in many other places. But her iPernity account was recently "suspended" for being "too political"
Vivid B and W images of Sydney - here's his Instagram to start with and go from there.
Brazilian-Dutch living in Amsterdam - her comprehensive site is worth a long visit.
Very talented Sydney photographer who works as a lawyer - amazing! Maybe in the wrong game?
Beautifully presented, high quality collection from some classic photographers. Luz Fosca
Italian, perceptive, very few tropes. View here.
British feminist, tells it like it is. Look to find what you won't expect.
Ilse Bing, Germany, 1899-1998. Known as the Queen of the Leica
Superb B & W, check out his Hollywood photos
To the complaint, 'There are no people in these photographs,' I respond, There are always two people: the photographer and the viewer ― Ansel Adams
Ursula LeGuin wrote "Always Coming Home" and there's a certain satisfaction in returning.
Aah yes, the city of excitement - great to visit, expensive to live there.
Our home for a year, on the Old Rhine in the green heart of Holland.
London, capital of Empire and an empire of Capital. But a great place to visit and photograph:
Dark walled city with famous castle and Crown Jewels.
Sunny open and friendly - perfect for holidays but full of history and scenic wonders as well.
As you know, the city of light and elegance. A photographer's paradise.
Home to the largest castle in the world, sitting high above the Vltava. The geographical centre of Europe.
Centre of history, it's own centre destroyed, yet so full of life and excitement.
The whole point of taking pictures is so that you don’t have to explain things in words – Elliott Erwitt