Saturday, November 29, 2008
Friday, November 28, 2008
DIY High Speed PhotographyMakezine.com has an intriguing feature on do-it-yourself high speed photography - like capturing a balloon in mid-burst or a water drop as it just hits the surface of a container of water. Curiously, they used a disposable camera because its flash won't last as long as that of a commercial flash unit, which ends up letting the subject blur.
Monday, October 6, 2008
Leonard Nimoy's Full Body ProjectWandering in Northampton, Mass. the other day I stepped into the R. Michelson Gallery because I noticed that it had a showing of Leonard Nimoy's photography. The building is an old bank and the photos were in the vault - a collection of images from several of the photographer's topic projects. Some of teh new material is a departure from his typical work and shows a new range for his eye.
In the past, Nimoy has concentrated on studies of the female figure - well lighted, shot, and printed, and certainly imaginative. For example, there are images from his black & white project and the Shekhina (Jewish concept of a female spirit of God) project. But after a point you have to start asking how much more can be done with the perfect body of an actor, dancer, athlete, or model. It's just that so much has been said visually about the subject that finding something new becomes difficult.
Nimoy finally realized this and had a chance to shoot what he calls the full body project: images of large women who are part of a burlesque review. While some of the photos are homages to classic images, I found that the personality of the participants came though with a sparkling strength - far different from his other work. Instead of images of nude bodies, he achieved images of nude women. They aren't classically beautiful, but they are in many ways far more interesting than physical "perfection," and help remind that the very concept is ephemeral. (Just look at the work of Rubens.)
Nimoy is working on a new project - Who Do You Think You Are? - in which he tries getting people to reveal secrets about themselves in front of the camera and show their "other selves." It seems to me that this new direction of more confrontation and exploration of people relates in a way to his background as an actor, where he had to become a vehicle to allow a character not himself to come forth. His latest work is a visual aspect of the same process of discovery and creation.
Friday, July 27, 2007
Online Photography CollectionsI had caught misreading an article, thinking that a major museum in Cleveland was uploading its photography collection onto the web. But that got me wondering about what collections might be available for online views. I did some searching, and here are some suggestions:
- New York Public Library - The institution offers a number of online exhibitions.
- NOAA Photo Library - The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has 10,000 environmental photos.
- George Eastman House - The foundation of teh photographic pioneer (Does the name Kodak ring a bell?) has a growing collection from its extensive holdings.
- Museum of Modern Art in New York - MoMA has online exhibitions and projects.
- US Geological Survey - Natural history and earth science images.
- Smithsonian Institution - Browse selected images, download screen resolution versions, and send e-cards.
- Library of Congress American Memory - Collections of teh LOC.