TAKE IT OR LEAVE IT

Couple of quick announcements. Don’t worry, these are followed by some actual content . . .

drool. is about to become a bi-weekly thing. That is: published every second Sunday.

But, wait!, you say, that’ll be too confusing. How am I supposed to keep track of “every second Sunday”?

No prob. Just subscribe using the handy subscribe form, there at the top, on the right. If you are on a mobile use this direct link or scroll to the very bottom for a subscribe button.

Fill it in. Get HYPO. delivered to your inbox. (And know that I’ll never share or sell your information.)

As well, I’ll be experimenting a bit with the format and content as drool. moves forward into the ’20’s. Maybe a bit more multi-faceted, maybe even funnier than it already is (as if that’s even possible, yuk, yuk, yuk).

So sign up and come along for the ride.

And since we’re on the subject . . . let me tell you why I do drool.:

I enjoy the process. The writing helps me know what I’m thinking (and, sometimes, feeling). And that, in turn, informs a whole bunch of other stuff that comprises certain (but not all) aspects of this project I call my life.

That’s the reason I do photo projects, too. Except with those I get to go out into the world and meet people and experience places. (Which, in my opinion, is a richer, more rewarding pursuit than writing.)

And the reason I make them public is ego and a desire to communicate.

Simple. Take it or leave it.

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OTTAWA NOTES

TALK/DAVE HEATH

Sunday, January 19th Studio Sixty Six will be hosting a conversation between Michael Schreier and yours truly. The public are invited.

The topic we’ll be discussing is something along the lines of “the interior muse”. This predicated by my previous blog post and the exhibition, at Studio Sixty Six, of Dave Heath’s late work.

Who knows what’ll happen.

Anyway, it begins at four Sunday afternoon and ends at six. There will be a bar for some drinkypoos afterwards, to facilitate general hobnobbing.

Plus, if you haven’t seen the show . . . well, that’s a good chance/excuse to have a look.

All the details here.

Plus! Some pictures from the exhibition to give you a taste . . .

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AN INTERIOR VIEW

April last year I bought a new camera, first new one in ten or twelve years. An easy one-handed snap-shooter. The plan was to shoot random stuff and see what developed.

I haven’t done a project this open-ended since I was a young man. Back then I revelled in chaos, randomness and a devil-may-care outlook. For at least the past twenty years, though, I’ve set geographic and/or demographic parameters for myself to, you know, tone down the confusion.

Well anyway, I got off to a good start, if “good” means consistently shooting a bunch of random stuff. But after a while I got bogged down, confused, maybe even a little bit pissed off. Nothing I was doing made any sense. It didn’t add up.

There were a few fleeting moments when I thought I had caught a glimpse of what this project might be about. I put a bit of effort into sequencing some images, to see what I had been doing, but it just didn’t pan out. I couldn’t find a handle.

Then, over the holidays I said to myself, I said, Tony, have a solid look at what you’ve done so far. Pick ten that feel right, put ’em into a row, shuffle them around, reshuffle, add and subtract images, re-reshuffle, repeat as required, find the thread. Begin, goddammit.

So I did. And now, after nine months of effort and aimlessness, I think I’ve finally figured it out, realized what I’ve been working towards, where I want this to go . . .

As I mentioned above, all my previous projects were rooted, somehow, in the specific location or demographics I was photographing. But that’s not what’s important here. This project is not about any specific location or demographic, in fact it’s not about the exterior world at all. It’s an interior view.

Of course it’s all tenuous at this point, and my thinking about the way forward, about the permutations and possibilities, is very bare-bones. But my thoughts now have a foundation on which to build.

In the meantime . . . this sequence is my first glimpse at the way forward. Into the inside.

(Best viewed enlarged on a big monitor. Click the first one for the slide show.
But I know that, these days, that’s probably asking too much.)

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OTTAWA NOTES

DAVE HEATH- In Concert For The Silent Witness

Though best known for A Dialogue with Solitude (1965), American photographer Dave Heath (1931-2016) spent his latter years in Toronto, teaching and photographing.

His good friend, Michael Schreier, was left with the archive of colour photos Dave was working on towards the end of his life. A selection of these works will be on display at Studio Sixty Six. Opening January 9th and continuing until February 9th.

Not to be missed. All the details here.

I DON’T KNOW

Do you have moods? You do, don’t you? I have them too. Happy, sad; sure, unsure; elated, depressed; strong, weak . . . who knows?

Today I just don’t know.

I could pretend I know, that I’m sure. Or I could wait to write this until I do feel sure (because I’ll feel sure later). I could curate the face I show here, package it up into some as-close-to-perfect me as possible. I could live the lie.

Fuck that shit . . .

Photos tumble out of my X100F. The result of confusion and some kind of concerted effort. But nothing seems to be making much sense.

Don’t get me wrong, though. After all, this is what I set out to do . . . to be confused, to look for some new kind of sense. And now here I am . . .

At least I feel alive.

OTTAWA NOTES

As far as I can tell there’s pretty much nothing I want to note, photo-wise, in Kapital City this week. And when I say “to note” what I mean is there’s nothing happening that, in my opinion, moves photography in Kapital City forward. I don’t need to agree with whatever is being presented, but I’d like it to be smart, modern (or historically pertinent) and well conceived.

The important bit from the above being “in my opinion”. After all, I’m just a guy with a blog, doing the best I can. (And some weeks I do better than others.)

Sometimes I wonder if I might (should) write something critical here when I see photographs presented for consideration that fall short of the (my) mark.

After all, as I’ve said before, there’s too much “noticing” and boosterism in this scene, and not enough actual criticism. And it seems to me that if you present work for consideration perhaps you should want, and expect, people to consider (rather that just notice) it.

Or maybe some photographers don’t want or expect their work to be considered. Perhaps, for some, just being noticed is enough.