Have just discovered the work of Frankfurt based photographer Férhat Bouda. You can view his collection here:
Here are some images from Mali of the Tuareg militia. I like that all of his images have the same contrasty tone and feel, with dark veins of pure black always running through his frames.
The Swedish photographer has a new book out Tractor Boys in which he follows the rural youth in Sweden, cruising in the cars in the countryside. All shot with a half frame camera.
In June 1907, my wife, out daughter Kitty and I, sailed for Europe. My wife insisted on going on a large ship, fashionable at the time. It was impossible to escape the nouveau riche. Ye Gods. By the third day out, I could stand it no longer. I had to get away. I walked as far forward as possible.
Coming to the end of the deck, I stood alone. Looking down, there were men, women, children on the lower levels of the steerage. The scene fascinated me. A round straw hat. The funnel leaning left. The stairway leading right. White suspenders crossed on the back of a man below. A mass that cut into the sky, completing a triangle. I saw shapes related to one another. A picture of shapes, and underlying it, a new vision that held me.
I raced to the main stairway of the steamer, chased down into my cabin, picked up my Graflex, raced up again, worrying whether or not the man with the straw hat had shifted his position. If he had the picture I saw would no longer exist. The man with the straw hat had not stirred an inch. The man in the crossed suspenders, he too stood where he had been talking. No one had moved.
I had only one plate holder with one unexposed plate. I released the shutter, my heart thumping. If I had captured what I wanted, it would be a picture based on related shapes and deepest human feeling. A step in my own evolution.
A few selects from the Berlin based photographer, Jürgen Bürgin.
From the excellent show at ICP last year.
I’m no part time dilettante photographer, unlike the bartenders, shoe salesmen, floorwalkers plumbers, barbers, grocery clerks and chiropractors whose great hobby is their camera. All their friends rave about what wonderful pictures they take. If they’re so good, why don’t they take pictures full—time, for a living, and make floor walking, chiropractics, etc., their hobby? But everyone wants to play it safe. They’re afraid to give up their pay checks and their security they might miss a meal.
What I did, anybody can do.
Many photographers live in a dream world of beautiful backgrounds. It wouldn’t hurt them to get a taste of reality to wake them up. Anyone who looks for life can find it… and they don’t need to photograph ashcans. The average camera fan reminds me of Pollyanna, with a lollypop in one hand and a camera in the other. You can’t be a Nice Nelly and take news pictures.
So, keep your eyes open. If you see anything, take it. Remember – you’re as good as your last picture. One day you’re hero, the next day you’re a bum…
In a painting no one complains that the subject is posed, but everybody complains about what looks posed in a photograph. Except, I’ve found that if I go very close in to the face, then the posed expression no longer exists. The face becomes a landscape of the lakes of the eyes and the hills of the nose and the valley of the cleft of the chin.
– John Loengard
I was photographing the photographer Brassaï. He had very prominent eyes, like a frog’s. As I focused my lens, he brought his hand up and pretended to focus his eye. It was a joke, but it added mystery to the picture. There’s a sense of action in a very small world. Or with Allen Ginsberg there were people smoking cigarettes and in the smoke there’s a sense of motion. It makes much out of very little.
– John Loengard
When I go to photograph somebody, they say, “What do you want me to do?” Those are the most frightening words in the English language. I want to say, “Please, go over into good light and do something unusual.”
– John Loengard