Art directors seem to really like shots on white seamless. I suppose itâ€™s because of
the design options these shots give them.
Speaking from personal experience, though, I have to tell you that itâ€™s kinda difficult to
make white seamless shots interesting. The subjects usually have a hard time because
thereâ€™s nothing to hold or lean on, no environment, nothing to relate to except the
photographer. Theyâ€™re totally isolated.
And the photographer has to make sure that the subjectâ€™s body language and expression
will work, will somehow make the image compelling.
When the images do work, though, there’s something quite beautiful about that isolation, and
graphic quality. After all…..we hardly ever get to study the human body devoid of context.
I came across this Robert Crumb drawing of a photographer at work, in the Charles Bukowski
book: THE CAPTAIN IS OUT TO LUNCH AND THE SAILORS HAVE TAKEN OVER THE SHIP.
I hesitate to reproduce this here because I certainly donâ€™t want to contravene any copyrights.
(I know I get a bit bent out of shape when people use my work without permission.) I noticed
in the bookâ€™s colophon that I can use bits of the book without permission if itâ€™s in the context
of a critical article or review. So let me review…….
Charles Bukowski might be an acquired taste, I donâ€™t know. I do know I liked his work from the
first time I read him. Same with R. Crumb. I never get tired of looking at his drawings. I think
both Bukowski and Crumb create work full of detail and nuance in the apparent framework of
bombast, vulgarity and crudeness. No mean task and I must admit to some envy. Iâ€™m sure I
wouldnâ€™t want to be them but their work strikes me as true and meaningfull.
THE CAPTAIN IS OUT TO LUNCH AND THE SAILORS HAVE TAKEN OVER THE SHIP is a compilation
of Bukowskiâ€™s notes from 1991 to 1993. Itâ€™s full of observations about the creative process, betting
at the race track, fame, women and so on. Robert Crumb has provided illustrations throughout.
If youâ€™re looking for a book that will inspire and entertain I think youâ€™d be hard pressed to find one
better than this.