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Monday, 26 November 2012

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Bill Clough has produced one of the best photo essays that I've seen: http://gallery.leica-users.org/v/Bill1941/Panhandle/?g2_page=1

This has me very excited... my wife and I are honeymooning in Austin with the intention of spending each day in a nearby small Texas town where we'll sample the legendary barbecue in the towns around Hill Country.

We're going for the BBQ, to be sure, but I'm very excited about shooting all of the small town Texas I can get my lenses around!

Jim Edmond,
That's a great set. Thanks for that.

Mike

The first one, Canyon Texas, is fantastic. It effectively conveys the feeling and geometry of the landscape.

Texas

More forests and fewer trees, more lakes and less water,and so on.

Am I correct in assuming that Abilene may actually be the parlour in a house of il-repute?

W

Jason, fair question. I do a lot of work where people are central to the pictures. But another thing I frequently do is look for pictures where the human presence is prominent--the roads, fences, buildings, over-the-top hotel lobbies--but without any people actually in the picture. Sometimes our "stuff" speaks for itself. This little set is working in that vein.

I thought Iowa was flat until I was in Texas.

Walter, you made me laugh. I'm afraid it's just the lobby of the Abilene Best Western. You can see a little more about their sense of style here:

http://workingpictures.blogspot.com/2012/06/in-lobby.html

Mike, I really enjoyed the contributor photos of Tejas. You should do this more often. Just no call for cat photos, please.

Where are the people indeed. I've travelled a lot in Indonesia and Malaysia. Whenever I come back here to Perth, my first thought is, "Where is everybody?" I know, where, of course. Everyone's in their little boxes, full of ticky tacky, all looking the same.

The streets are nearly empty here. Everyone's either in a mall, in their car, or in their home.

I walk on the streets in Asia and think, there's more life per square inch here than there is per square mile at home. In Asia, everyone smiles. Kids play. People laugh and love jokes. Everyone wants to talk to you. People eat out on the streets and everyone knows their neighbours. I feel far safer in Asia than I do in my own city. I use a stick and walk slowly. The courtesy and kindness I'm shown in Asia is amazing. It's respect, remember that?

We live in deserts in the West. We've forgotten how to live.

Was the Gatesville shot taken early on a Sunday? From the shadows it had to be fairly early in the day and since the courthouse lot was empty........

Lovely (mini) series by Weese.

I remember many years ago when a 21 year old me, on my first and so far only visit to the USA, drove a rented land yacht across the state line from Louisiana and into Texas. The image of Texas from movies, and other popular culture, was so strong that I was a bit surprised that the landscape didn't change immediately as it became Texas. That part of east Texas just looked like more Louisiana.

I like these. Reminds me of shots I attempt myself. Texas is both modern and ultra stark outside the modern. Sometimes a long road through endless corn and hopefully dramatic skies are the best one can hope for outside of the Rt.66 style stuff.

I can hear Peter Croft's dismay at the way some societies are moving. However there are plenty of cities I know where the human presence is still prospering. Where the centres aren't just parking lots and automobile rat runs, and the shopping experience doesn't mean driving to some soul-less out-of-town mall. And where you can still photograph our species in it's "natural" environment.

Was 'Canyon' named in hope?

Nothing beats Turkey, Texas. Even painted fire hydrants in the home of Bob Wills.

Carl, thanks for the reply.

Takes me from "been there, done that" to "been there, wish I'da done that", or maybe from "le mot juste" to "le image juste".

Again just acclaim Carl.....great work, new topographics with a twist....love it.

Greets, Ed.

Gatesville! Dang ... I went to 3rd and 4th grade here (my dad was regular army, stationed at Ft. Hood) ... schools were segregated and I was introduced to really nasty racism. It's the first place where I heard the word "n*gg*r" (and it still grates on me), and there were stinging caterpillars, hornets and wasps everywhere, trees with thorns, and party-line telephones. I hated it ... on the other hand, we lived across the street from the town pool, which was barely chlorinated and fed by cold, cold fresh water, and a season pass cost $5. Some of the other kids were OK with the Yankee in their midst, and I learned to ride a bicycle ... and I took my first photos there, using a Kodak Brownie camera ...

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