31 December 2011


Instead of xmas cards I like to send out New Year greetings, usually in the form of a little book (like these). What with being out of town before xmas, and then being ill and listless and lazy, the little book hasn't happened this year. However, a trawl through the photographs (still part of the ever-ongoing organisation of photos) found some candidates for attaching to an email greeting.  I can't decide which to use - they appeal to me for different reasons, so perhaps writing about them will help with the decision process.

Candidate A was taken from a moving train. I have many photos taken from the train, most of them deleted immediately, but many remaining, with the blurred foreground and glimpses of the distance. This one is somewhere in northern Germany, not that that matters -- to me it has a feeling of brushing aside the near obstacles to get the distant view, and I see that as an optimistic thing. But the overall darkness looks so gloomy -
Sometimes a crop improves a photo - this is less dark and still gives that "brushing away the cobwebs" feeling (to me, anyway!) - but there's less of a sense of clarity of the distant view.

Candidate B is full of light - autumn light - not strictly "new year" -- though even after being out of school for some decades, I still see autumn (the start of the school year) as the true start of the year. Perhaps my attachment to this photo comes too much from the circumstances of taking it: entering a museum to see the coffee shop straight ahead, with this long slit in the dark wall to let light from the atrium into the hall. The cakes were as amazing as might be expected from a place that takes such care over its floral display. Looking at the shapes and colours of the flowers, and the dazzling light, makes me smile.

 In Candidate C, again it's the light that animates the scene - dappled light (like Hopkins' "pied beauty") - along with the cheery colours. On the downside, grafitti is grafitti... though the mural is clever, referencing its own making in giving the figure (a self-portrait of the artist??) a spray can. Is it suitable/meaningful for a greetings card, though?
And is it cheating to use a photo that was taken in 2009?


Sandy said...

B please. You don't really notice the autumnal aspect but rather the cheerfulness or as you said optimism.
and no not a problem on the 2009 bit. no one would know if you didn't say...and anyway, if you were making it a piece of work made another year which fit your thought, you would have no problems. So, with the photo as art.

and Happy New Year!

June said...

As a visual artist with stringent ties to words, I would say the answer to the next-to-last question is "what is that graffiti artist writing?". But I can see why you love the window photo.

Happy New Year, Margaret.