Sometimes what comes back to me startles. It shakes me from deep within. Upends assumptions. Corrupts my absolutes. Shatters.
I find sometimes the images I make are ones that might best conform to what I expect to encounter, what I anticipate seeing or what will be come (within a frame) a photograph. How do I see what I expect not to see? How do I begin to peel back the layers of my own influence upon the subject. What is possible and what is not possible? There is as much erasing in a photograph as preserving, a disappearing, perhaps of independence or autonomy. Maybe it’s ego that the photograph reveals — my own that is. Maybe that’s the shaking I feel when I look for the first time at what I thought I saw, grappling to recognize the forces within this exchange of looking and being looked at.
As the image attracts, it does so, in the end, by attracting us to ourselves in a kind of mirror, our own not-quite-accurate reflection of ourselves that the photographic image projects and to which we reach, which pulls us. Maybe it’s a revelation that shatters, like the mythical Narcissus falling into the reflective pool of his own self-importance. We can, collapse–devastatingly–into what is, in the end, not reality or beauty or truth but an image.
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