In developing this website, I thought about how best to characterize what it is that I do. After going back and forth for some time, I ended up right where I started. That is, I returned to one of the first things that got me interested in photography many years ago: the ability of a photograph tell a story.
When studying photographs and photographers I admired, it became clear that the common thread, the thing that kept me coming back, was this notion of story. I’ve always been drawn to stories, wherever they were found. Whether it was a novel, a comic book, a song, movie, painting or, yes, a photograph — all became especially compelling when they contained a story that captured my imagination
At its essence, a photograph can be understood as a story told with light and time — a non-verbal form of storytelling. When we ‘snap’ a photo, we are making a visual record of a scene (light) at a specific moment in time, usually a mere fraction of a second. Whatever our reason is for taking the photo, well, thatis part of the story.
A photo’s most basic function is as a record of a scene or event — a memory. It can also be an expression of something the photographer wishes to convey, an idea or a feeling. However simple or complex our ambition, when we raise that viewfinder to our eye, the resulting image is a combination of the intuitive and the intentional.
I like to think of it this way: the things that draw us to a subject have engaged the intuitive part of our brain. It could be the color of the light, a humorous juxtaposition, a striking face, an activity, a dramatic moment. Once our intuitive mind has drawn us to a particular subject, we then engage the intentional part of our brain, using the tools of photography to follow through and tell the story.
These tools of the photographer—composition, camera angle, lens choice, shutter speed, lens aperture—serve the same purpose as the painter’s brush, the writer’s pen or keyboard, and the sculptor’s knife. They are the technical means of expression, of giving form to ideas generated in the intuitive mind.
In the end, this idea of ‘image as story’ is, for me, the driver of my curiosity whenever I’m out with my camera.
I invite you to click through the headings above to explore the images and stories within. It’s my hope they’ll inspire you to explore some of these amazing corners of our world and bring back your own stories.