Motion Photography

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My parents put a camera in my hands over 63 years ago and it developed in me an inner passion for collecting things I saw and felt ever since.  I built my first enlarger at age 11 and was then able on my own to share the entire process from visualization to being able to share what I felt and saw – no more having to wait for an Eastman Lab to process film and send back 3”x 4” glossies.  In the 50’s the process was magical; the Brownie Hawkeye with its viewing glass and gray shutter release was a “light tight jewel box,” for me a precision instrument of the time.

In 1970 I was an Army Captain and applied for flight school, flying being something I knew as a child I would do and changed the way I viewed the world.  Not much different from the way we see things from a vehicle travelling at 70mph, the view at a few hundred Mph, with an added dimension, provided me a different perspective of how I chose to view life as it passed by.  Yes, day to day function remains very practical out of necessity, but if one chooses it is possible to see the beautiful smear of color, the elongation of an object as it passes, not as individual instants in time but as a process of shifts along a continuum. What my flying experience gave me was a much faster awareness of the shifts and changes as a pilot; what photography gave me was the ability and challenge to find the way to collect and present what I saw and felt as a photographer.

With experience, study and practice, it was easier to present motion using newer “light tight jewel boxes.”  This resulted, a number of years back, in my intentionally starting to maintain a Motion body of work. This includes almost everything people do: dance, bicycling, rowing, running, and just walking.  I’ve self-published several books using this imagery.  When I photograph the Symphony or Sports, I also intentionally take do Motion work to demonstrate what is really happening in time, while primarily freezing action for traditional publication.  And yes, somewhere between “he needs to learn how to use his camera” and “I never understood the beauty of being able to see movement” falls what I do with Motion work.  I also have been told that motion imagery disturbs some because they are unable to visually register an image that is not clear and well defined.  I have learned it is impossible to satisfy every viewer of what I produce.  I do understand based on experience viewing Motion imagery is an “acquired taste,” but this will not thwart me because Motion is part of who I am as a photographer.