Sunday, January 20, 2013

True New or Tried and True

When I drive to or from southern California I try to avoid the interstate and follow blue highways through the Navajo and Hopi reservations.  The vast emptiness of four corners country gives me a bounty of new material each time I visit plus a fresh take on stuff I’ve shot frequently. The images from my November trip with John Farnsworth were a case in point as is this image taken exactly five years earlier. 

I’ve been having a between the ears debate about the value of plumbing the depths of familiar subjects versus the thrill of discovery and how each is reflected in the photographic results.  Does the best work come from knowledge and examination of the tried and true or from the immediacy of fresh and new?  The answer is yes.

But then there’s the feeling that you need to get out of Dodge to get stoked; a feeling that is corollary to the more prevalent grass is always greener affliction from which I suffer.  This irresistible force mitigates for the theory that our art is best served by seeing absolutely new things and seeing them frequently.  At least that’s my excuse.

More shots from the road to follow.


Daryl A. Black said...

Your words about photography and the need to seek the image in new and different places or even return to the sameness rang so true. A lovely piece of writing, along with a great image.

Steve Immel said...

Thanks Daryl. I suppose it is a combination of new and familiar that drives us.