Creativity is just connecting things. When you ask creative people how they did something, they feel a little guilty because they didn’t really do it, they just saw something. It seemed obvious to them after a while.
There are two times of spontaneity and creativity in my work.
First is during the field session, where innumerable images are captured.
In the field session all focus is on the elements and light in the landscape. Images are captured based on my developing composition skills and preferences. Creative decisions come when deciding which elements are to be placed in the composition. There are also creative decisions about exposure, perspective, and where the elements are to be placed.
The field session is vitally important for gathering images that will later become projects and prints. It is impossible to create good prints from poorly focused images or images without good composition. Well-captured images make great prints and projects. They also increase the creative opportunities in the studio.
A second opportunity for spontaneity and creativity comes in the studio, days or months later. This is where one’s artistic vision enters the process. Artistic concepts are certainly applied through skills capturing images in the field session. There are just a limited number of creative opportunities when capturing images. There are unlimited creative possibilities when creating the final print in the studio. These possibilities are limited only by my ability to be creative. The studio is where the uniqueness of my art is expressed.
It is also where the evolution of my work can be found.
Those who do not work on creating their art in the studio are destined to produce art that looks like everyone else’s work. For some that is enough. For me, not so.
What happens in the studio is the processing of the file from the camera in the editing software and its presentation as a print. This results in a fine art print that is 100% produced by me, even if I must rely on someone else to print my work because it is larger than I can personally print or uses a substrate, like metal, for the print.
Processing to the point of having a file to print is where I expresses my vision. I have seen that photographic artists, who are serious about their work, learn to print. Even if they produce something that must be printed by someone else (because of size or printed medium), they know how to get the print they want.
So, the studio is where my vision is developed and expressed. It is the cauldron that slowly refines my work.
In the studio, as I struggle to create something unique, I discover my next steps and over time it becomes more clear.
All of the images in this article are compositions of 2-4 other images, sewn into one new image. This is the latest project from my journey.