Artistic influences

Crop Circles

Crop Circles  (from the series: Ethereal Images)

I find that I am influenced by many things, experiences and occurances. Some influences are very overt and obvious, others not so and maybe latent memories, that unconsious stuff.

For my series Bad Trip – Sad Trip, to me, the initial artisitc intent was an obvious photographic documentation of folk art that was being expressed regionally as road side memorials. Kinda simple, so I thought. Later I came to remember a child hood experience driving with my father. Then further complicated by the fact that my father has since passed away, but not due to a highway accident, but due to other decisions he had made early in his life and did not know the far reaching consequences. So in a way the memorials were: drink, then drive, then kill or die and the consequences to those still alive.

Another series that has been drifting along is my Etherial Images, including the image Crop Circles above. To me the obvious input is that I travel by air frequently and one way to pass the time is to sit at a window seat and take photographs, of clouds, of the ground, etc. Kill some time in a delightful way. I’ve been doing this for many years and have enjoyed the images privately for some time. This image Crop Circles may be the pivital photograph to the series.  I have keep reviewing it and saw that it did not confirm to very many photographic rules, there was still something about it (not neat and square, edges runnin off, etc). So I have had this image laying about and I have keep coming back to it. Then I realized the connection, this was like the feeling I had looking at Richard Diebenkorn (1922 – 1993) paintings from his series Ocean Park. I do not neccessarily think of my image as being Abstract-Expressionsim as was Diebenkorn’s work, but the more I look at, the more it does appear to take that look on.

Thus I have started to go back to my other flight images and I realize that a series has started to come together. I think that there is a body of work hidden amongst this. I find that certain compositions and images start to repeat, as though I have made a certain image once, I still keep coming back to it again and again. The may be a couple of other “Diebekorn” influenced images in this series, but it will not a repeat of Ocean Park. Sometimes it is just good to know what might be influencing you so that you can move on from there.

Best regards, Doug

4 thoughts on “Artistic influences

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  1. I find it interesting how things come to influence us just in the normal course of the day. Your Bad-Trip, Sad-Trip influenced me to do my own mini-project. It’s not comprehensive, but it was fun, nonetheless and it inspired me to put together a collection of cohesive images called Red-eye Flight. It was fun. I had wished, after I was in flight, that I had not put my camera in the overhead compartment. I saw a number of shots on the plane that I would have liked to take. Oh well, maybe next flight! :-)


  2. How exciting to see you writing this, when I was just thinking about how you can look back through a random collection of your stuff and realise that your muse has had a little series in mind all along! It’s nice, when you realise you aren’t alone in thinking these things sometimes.

    Oh, and I really like that image. Very different, from your usual, but I do like it.

  3. Julie, thanks, sometimes that muse is just taking its time to let you know that it was there all along. It’s along the lines of mediation & patience where you allow yourself time to reflect and the feelings to flow, versus forcing the feelig or project to try to get it to function NOW. As an analogy, in golf, the firmer you hold the shaft, the shorter the distance of the drive, versus a light touch and flowing the club head can get you some tremendous ball distance, a athletic contradiction. hmmm, I’m inspiring myself for another post!

    Looking at your images on Flickr, I may have to join Flickr (I know, its free, so what’ my hesitation?) so that I can leave some comments on how much I enjoy some of your images, a might different from mine at the moment:- ) But very nice nevertheless.

  4. Thanks Doug, I appreciate your taking the time for a wee look. If you already have your images hosted though, flickr is probably just another login to forget the password for!

    Your talking about trying not to force the creative process fits in an awful lot with what I’ve been thinking recently and what Paul’s also been talking about, with the mindful and calm approach. I think we’re on to something here…

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