All my baby pictures are in black & white. That’s how what we saw in the viewfinder came out in the lost world of our pasts. My mind sees them in high contrast, blacks and whites and not much grey, maybe a little blurry or at least grainy. Then came Kodachrome (remember the Paul Simon song: “It give us the nice, bright colors. Give us the greens of summer.”), and the world was awash in color. And if we wanted black & white we had to buy special black & white film. Now, with digital photography, any color photograph can become black & white with a couple of simple clicks. But it doesn’t look like those old black & white photos I remember. They are all shades of grey, not the stark icons of my memory. These images are just a few examples of how I remember the black & white world.
Details. Details. Details. All those little details make up the big picture. Universal beauty, universal truth – they are a tapestry of details, and so each one is a glimpse of the whole. Many times I’ll take a picture and find something in it, a small part of the entire frame, that is really what enticed me to take the photograph in the first place. These are the parts that mattered. Life is that way sometimes. We lose sight of what matters, inundated in the wash of everything.
The camera is an extension of what you’re watching. I see crowds as a blur and landscapes as something far away – I don’t take very good pictures of crowds or landscapes, most of the time. My eye’s focus always seems to narrow. I see a piece of the landscape or a single face among the many. So, that’s what is usually in the photographs I take. These images are some of the people I found myself watching.