Monday, January 23, 2012

California and 23rd

The largest reason I ever use myself as a subject in my own photos is a means of convenience.  I like to work sporadically and often in uncomfortable circumstances.  In this, being able to project my idea for a spread onto my bandmates and having them respond to it in a positive way was almost surprising but mostly just gratifying.  My patience for tedious things has seemed to diminish more over the years so I have been making an effort to be more organized in order to eliminate aggravations that will inherently come with doing anything more complicated than blowing my nose.

Around 1:00 PM five of us packed up and drove across the river and down Main street where we eventually  parked next to some grain elevators tucked away in a residential part of northeast Minneapolis.  In tow: two tripods, my nikon digital slr, Mamiya Universal press with polaroid and 6x9 back, a 20 ft air cable release, 5 packages of "festival colors" (the same stuff I have been using to sprinkle on people the past few months), new sekonic light meter, and a few packages of fujifilm instant.

I set up my cameras as everyone else shuffled around coldly/climbed on the grain elevators.  After this, everyone piled into the car and rotated coming out to have their photos done.  Whose ever turn it was would strip down to clothing sans outdoor wear, scream, get over it, and let me dump a color on them, pose in a few places, and run back to the car to heat up.  My favorite photos are the last set that I asked everyone to do.  I  asked each person to stand in front of the Mamiya which I had set up on a tripod in front of some bushes.  I would focus the lens, cock the shutter, hand them the cable release and walk away, telling them they can do whatever they want.  Everyone's "self portrait" turned out very similarly which I guess must have been a side effect of the freezing sleet and cold wind that picked up by the time it was my turn to go.  When we packed up to leave, both cameras were covered in a layer of ice and my fingers could not move fast enough to pull the polaroid shots from the camera without great difficulty.

At any rate, this series will be used as album art and the release date won't arrive until mid April so all I can share is a glimpse, a couple flukes of mechanics.