Archive for July 2014

July 2014 print: Prime Tower reflection 1

Prime Tower, Zurich, Switzerland

For once I am right on time with my monthly print. The photograph I have chosen as the July print has been shown in an earlier nearby contribution. It features an all-blue composition that combines the facade of the Prime Tower and its reflection. There are many things that I like about this photograph - the perspective, the confrontation of the "real" building and its reflection, the color, as well as the symmetry.
I really start getting used to and enjoying my monthly prints and think that it does me good in many ways. Have a look at the photographs I printed before or suggest a photograph to be printed in August!

2014/07/29 by Unknown
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My photo treasures: Eric Meola

Photograph © Eric Meola. Prismatic light in glass. Las Vegas, Nevada, USA.

The famous and well-known photographer presented today is Eric Meola, whose photography and articles I have discovered a while ago on The Luminous Landscape. By this, I have already admitted my photography illiteracy, because I had not known Eric Meola for his iconic advertisement shots, travel photographs, or portraits of Bruce Springsteen (also look HERE), but only discovered and became interested in his more recent, abstract photographs.

The colorful and abstract photographs of Eric Meola, are more about seeing and discovering compositions everywhere than about documenting iconic landmarks. The capture shown above, Prismatic light in glass, is a wonderful example. The subject of this photograph is "just" a glass wall in a Las Vegas restaurant that was transformed into this amazing color palette by reflections. If you look carefully, I think one can recognize parts of a table and chairs, but other than that there is not much hint of the location. Make sure to listen to the audio commentary accompanying this composition. Eric Meola tells the "behind the scenes" of this flashy and wild reflection photograph and you can even learn a thing or two about chromatic adaptation and how we see color under different conditions.

In addition to the strong colors and contrasts in the photograph above and in Eric Meola's photographs in general, I particularly like the way he composes, which I think is quite distinct. Instead of capturing scenes that contain interesting details, he zooms in on the detail that caught his interest. As a viewer, I know immediately what he discovered and wanted to show. The results are carefully composed, straightforward photographs with strong contrasts and colors and without superfluous elements. The tight composition detaches the subject from its surrounding and by this often renders ordinary subjects abstract.

For a long time I have disliked the keyword "abstract" to describe photographs, because, in my opinion, a photograph cannot show something which is truly abstract. However, after reading articles and interviews by Eric Meola, I have changed my mind (I recommend reading The black wall, for example). Photographs can very well be abstract in the sense that they do not aim at documenting an actual subject, but rather show an ephemeral quality - for example color under a particular condition, light and shadow patterns, or a tiny detail of a larger whole. It may be compared to a writer who  describes a particular character trait of a person independent of what that person looks like. In this sense, abstract photographs record character traits of a subject rather than its looks.

There is a plethora of interesting and educative texts by and about Eric Meola. Besides his homepage, including the audio commentaries to several other photographs, I particularly like his articles on The Luminous Landscape. I always find his explanations rich in content and full of insight and at the same time lacking any kind of dogmatism or boasting. They have a quality of humbleness, which I appreciate. His Legends Online site is very informative with short texts to many of his iconic photographs, Syracuse University, where he studied, has a long text about Eric Meola, there is of course also a wikipedia article, as well as many interviews such as the one by Chris Maher and Larry Berman, John Paul Caponigro, or FuseVisual. This is only a small collection of links; if you are interested many more websites and even books wait to be discovered.

2014/07/27 by Unknown
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Watercolors 4: Shallow water waves on Sand Beach

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Regular wave patterns on Sand Beach in Acadia National Park in Maine, USA. It is an unusual watercolor composition in many ways: The colors are soft and subdued, there is little contrast, and everything is out of focus because the photograph was captured with a long exposure (a little over 3 seconds). The growing watercolors series is shown on this blog as well as in the watercolors gallery. I hope you enjoy!

2014/07/13 by Unknown
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June 2014 print: Abstract PWC building reflections

PWC building, Zurich-Oerlikon, Switzerland  Abstract reflections in the facade of the PWC building in Zurich-Oerlikon, Switzerland.

I have just printed the photograph above - the sixth print of this year and therefore the monthly print for June. It is a composition that I have shown you almost a year ago as part of the ongoing "nearby" series. The PWC building is covered by rotating glass panes that automatically position themselves against the sun. The abstract composition comes about due to the reflection of these glass panes in the window behind - the photograph is a look into the inter-space between the panes and the windows. In my opinion, the colors of this photograph fit together harmoniously and I like the regular vertical pattern - it looks a little bit like a colorful bar code. As a supplement, there is even a hint of a moiré pattern!

If there is any photograph on my website that you would like to have as a print, please suggest it as a monthly print.

2014/07/07 by Unknown
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Watercolors 3: Bavarian greens

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As a follow up to last weeks green Boston watercolor photograph, here comes another composition of intermingled, reflected greens. Besides the colors and the fact the it is again only water that you are seeing, the two photographs are quite different though. The version above was created in Bavaria, close to the small town of Siegsdorf, and the body of water is a river (Traun) and not a pond. Consequently, the waves are more shallow and intermingled and thus reflect the leaf colors much more chaotically. Nevertheless, the result is, in my opinion, an attractive, abstract, green marbled watercolor composition.

2014/07/01 by Unknown
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