Sunday, June 20, 2010

polarizing the polaroid

This evening was the first, introductory evening of the Alternative Process Photography workshop - taught by Christopher James - that I'll be preoccupied with this coming week. It was the usual nervous experience of feeling that everyone else was more technically competent / artistically talented / more entitled to be there than one is oneself (in other words, very good sentiments for a professor to be reminded of...). Christopher himself is a most compelling enthusiast, however - and he's quite determined and confident that (a) the week will be a huge amount of fun (b) we all have to be at least a bit crazy to be giving up a week of our lives to such a pursuit and (c) that what we're doing is returning art and individualism to a world increasingly dominated and awash in huge amounts of digital images - images that are anywhere between amazing and terrible. But there are many more bad than good ones out there... And this meshes completely with my own real wish to create photographs that are one-off, that include accident, and so on.

He produced a rarity - a working polaroid camera, complete with film - from which he took our identifying shots ... (I realize I have a packet of Polaroid 55 film somewhere back in Graham which is probably worth about $200 or so on eBay... I wonder where it is...) ... so what could I do with this but take a photo of it using my iPhone polaroid simulation app... I seem to look distressingly sorrowful, which completely belies how excited I am.

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