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Thursday, 18 November 2010


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I saw this and just started shooting. It's not nearly one of my technically better photographs, but if it's not my favorite of my photos, it's pretty close.


Just this morning a friend sent me this, which he was "taken in" by....


(Top picture in the thread)


The Sept/Oct issue of View Camera magazine is totally devoted to Paul's unpublished images; and the forward includes the quote. His work is very inspiring; and he goes beyond Minor White in creating sublime images.

I really like the face reflecting in the mirror. Was it a pleasant surprise when you looked at the image on your computer screen, or did you see it at shooting time. Just curious...

I'm not sure I can glean any special meaning from Mr. Caponigro's comment. Wouldn't any experienced pro innately and always "draw" on his/her "abilities to fabricate a picture" even when stumbling upon a time and place and situation that presents itself spontaneously as a perfect photo moment?

Or did I misinterpret his statement?


"It's not nearly one of my technically better photographs, but if it's not my favorite of my photos, it's pretty close."

I have a Rebel. Great bike.

I think it speaks to the heart of truth.

Michael Farrell is right. I always find these photographers' quotes about how or why they took their pics almost devoid of meaning. It's possible to say virtually anything if the photos are great, and then the reference is from the shot back to the word, not the other way round. You can spout almost any gibberish if your pics are hot. And it doesn't matter how articulately you can write about your images - If they're pedestrian, there's no words that will lift them. The quote above doesn't help anyone in any way. There's nothing that is actually meaningful to anyone who is contemplating lifting a camera to their eye. And the link is totally inadequate. You click to find out if he's good enough a photogrpaher to be able to spout gibberish with impunity, and there's a few tiny shots which are kind of OK, but don't really resolve it. You can't tell if he's good or not. If he's got some awesome photos, he can say what he likes.

For those of you who are fans of Camponigro here is a "conversation" between Junior Camponigro and senior. It´s quite interesting, seems father is a very spiritual person.
My god, I had to read the quote three times to appreciate the truth in this quote!!
But isn´t that like everything in life? My favourite gatherings/reunions/parties have always been those which were never really pre-planned, just set up on the spur of the moment.

JPC seems to be saying that the picture asked to be made and that he was just in the right place at the right time. However, his excellent photography exudes technique from every grain of silver and there is very little about it that appears found or accidental. His quote reminds me of authors who say that they do not write stories, they simply go where their characters take them. I alternate between thinking that this is a cute conceit(perhaps too cute), and thinking that it is precisely this quality that separates my pedestrian efforts to tame light (or words) from the essays of those whose work I admire. I am VERY susceptible to Caponegro's images; for me, he very often manages to transcend the cliche qualities that Ansel Adams' success seems to have encouraged in the next generation of landscape photographers. He makes the silver sing. So maybe the more accurate observation would be that his images are what happens when someone with a superbly honed sense of craft an a unique eye puts himself in the way of photons.

Ben Marks

I myself find silver singing quite beautifully in Ansel Adams photographs! He might take a lot of flak for his methodical Zone System approach (which, once learned, he described as second nature) from devotee's of the decisive moment. Revisit his description of his photographing Moonrise, Hernandez. Talk about a decisive moment for 8x10 photography! He was a craftsman, being able to judge the scene and calculate the exposure without a light meter, and an artist, responding to his vision of the scene that appeared before him. I think Paul Caponigro's quote speaks to the same thing, the euphoria of visualizing a scene that begs, seduces and steals your soul to capture, and then is gone.


Interesting and pleasant that you think the quote is interesting.

In my odder days - probably out in the countryside near a stream and some trees - I would sometimes feel I was in a special spot where everything just gelled.

And I might take a small pace backwards and then forward again to ease myself into that spot and wonder what it was that felt just right.

Didn't have a camera though.

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