Friday, August 24, 2012

Yukiko Blackwell

Yukiko Blackwell. Katazome Artist. Taken October 11, 2011

"I do use light to reveal – or the opposite of reveal – with my subjects how they are feeling or how I feel. 

"I think there is a lot of correspondence and communication between two human beings that goes on without one’s mouth moving. And that’s in body language and I think just in brainwaves. I think we do really connect. It’s often quite a heightened moment for the sitter, you known, because they have someone really quite near them with a camera pointing at them and it’s a … I think in those heightened moments you communicate even better.

"I think something like that goes on and I really trust it. You know, that’s what I trust. And I think that’s the moment when a picture becomes a portrait.

"I really deal with the cadaver of a person. It’s a form in front of me that I show in a certain way by lighting in a certain way. I’m certainly not looking for a truth in them. Often I think it might be more a truth in me.

"I like to know how they look so I recognize who’s who when they walk in the door but really not much more than that.

"I really like the connection that human beings have when there isn’t a great knowledge – like when you first meet people. I would find it very, very hard to photograph a friend well. Or to photograph somebody that I knew well. I think that that tension when you first meet people allows you to communicate without speaking, really sharply. So I don’t find out a lot. I don’t chat a lot. I hardly talk when I photograph. But I do … there will be something about a person that will cause me to direct them following things they do. They might glance somewhere and it make me think something that I trust and try something with them and slowly they become themselves. A very accurate themselves. And that’s when I think it works the best."

Excerpts from Nadav Kander on Portraiture 
National Portrait Gallery (posted on Strobist July 25, 2012)
Here is an index of portraits.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Book Twenty-Four

Book Twenty-Four
April - June 2001
Modified Sketchbook
Kept in Grantham's Landing, Canada
9" x 6" 196 pages. 

Tissue paper will go through a printer. This was a revelation and delight. It led to a lot of layering and the ability to add quotes over other work already in the book. Some of the text in book twenty-four is a transcription of the narrator's thoughts from Ang Lee's "The Ice Storm." His ruminations on The Fantastic Four interested me most:

"To find yourself in the negative zone, as the Fantastic Four often do, means that all everyday assumptions are inverted. Even the invisible girl herself becomes visible and so she looses the last semblance of her power. Seems to me that everyone exists partially on a negative zone level. Some people more than others. In your life it's kind of like you dip in and out of it -  a place where things don't quite work out the way they should. But for some people there's something about the negative zone that tempts them. And they end up going in ... going in all the way."

I began blockprinting during this time and started to experiment with lino blocks. I snuck away from my work to take a weekend class in Vancouver and learn some technique. I felt I could never get a cutter that was small enough. 

My favourite quote from book twenty-four:

"'A fish-hook in the mouth of God.' An attempt to replace narrative tension with metaphoric tension."

Here is a list of books.