Monday, January 03, 2022

Dream Dream Dream

Clouds over the west mesa, Los Cordobas, NM

It’s time for the well-worn look back at the year just ended. In the case of 2021 it’s a matter of good riddance for the most part. Yet, there were some photographic moments that gave me pleasure and this time instead of offering images that were the people’s choices these come a personal place. They make the short short list of photographs that reached deep into my chest for reasons I can’t effectively explain. They may not be the best of but they’re the ones that spoke to me loudest.

El Salto from Arroyo Seco, NM

Forlorn Ken Tingley said, "Photograph me. I'm getting married today."

Into the clouds Los Cordobas, NM

Grain elevators, Landergin, Texas

From thousands of photographs made during the year of our discontent rose maybe thirty contenders. Using a reductive process, I created five increasingly small sets of Selects. These are Selects 5 and I’m loath to cut any more of them. Plus each time I curate the choices they change.

The big empty of the Navajo Nation nurtures me. The sight of simple bent metal habitations beneath towering red rock walls speaks to the diminutive scale of humankind to Mother Earth's immensity. Near Monument Valley, Arizona.

I've long been a fan of Mary Colter's iconic structures in Arizona. Most impressive may her her Desert View Watchtower at the South Rim of the Grand Canyon. Based in form and proportions of the Round Tower at Mesa Verde and in materials and construction methods from Hovenweep her Watchtower pays tribute to the Ancestral Puebloans and their amazing architectural accomplishments.

Blue sky and clouds peak through the ruins of the Upper Oro Mine in what was once the Silver Boom town of Leadville, Colorado. Leadville's heyday was scarcely more than a decade and it all went bust when the US Treasury stopped buying silver to support the Silver Certificate.

2021 was the year that spot color, the process of preserving some of the color in an image while rendering the balance in toned black and white ignited my somnolent photographic career. For the first time I reached my long held objective of paying for my habit. And that habit included a whole new camera kit. I harbor no illusions that I will duplicate the feat in 2022 as I recognize that the pent- up demand caused by COVID spurred a year of record sales for every artist and gallerist I know.

I can dream can't I?


Blacks Crossing said...

The two weather shots of Los Cordobas and El Salto are incredible and capture the sky drama perfectly. No one does skies like you do. Eric Sloane would be proud. As always, your selective toning is terrific. We are happy that technique grabbed you in 2021. And yes, you can dream and will fulfill those dreams for yet another successful year as a photographer! Happy and healthy 2022!

Kim Engle-Wrye said...

Your work is beautiful Steve!

Kim Engle-Wrye said...

Your work is beautiful