Sunday, April 22, 2018

Camera Obscura



Josef Tornick is an accomplished photographer in Santa Fe. I’ve lost touch with the man though he pops up on social media from time to time. When he unsubscribed from my blog a couple of years back I closed the door on the dude. I unfriended him on Facebook. Take that. Hey, I got this portrait out of the relationship didn't I? The shallow depth of field lends an appealing softness to the image. And I do like it when my victim looks the camera straight in the eye.

Josef, who's something of a seeker, describes himself as a project-oriented humanist documentary photographer. And you thought I overused adjectives. His humanist documentary photography book "Tir A Mhurain - 50 Years On" is a visual ode to the windswept landscape and hardy inhabitants of the Outer Hebrides and Aran Islands just off the western coast of Ireland. It may be his magnum opus. I'm still seeking mine.

The 50 Years in the title refers to Paul Strand's 1954 "Tir A Mhurain" from which Tornick drew his inspiration. Tir A Mhurain translates to "Marram Grass" which is a common name for bent grass or seagrass.

Josef Tornick proclaims that he is self-taught, an affliction with which I am familiar. He counts Josef Sudek, Manuel Bravo, Flor Garduno, Paul Strand, Sebastiao Salgado, David Michael Kennedy and Keith Carter as models for his work.





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