My mother used to smoke Players Number 5 from an all-white pack, the brand name printed large in a delicate typeface. She would nonchalantly raise the just lit and perfectly rolled cigarette to her lips, fashionable nail polish glinting elegantly in the afternoon sun.
And as I say this, I raise the camera to my mind’s eye, and there I am with her in that secluded space where all of me is gathered, poised to act, to press the button.
I look, I see, the shutter clicks. It all started as a child, much before I had a camera.
Now I have one; and when I look at my own images, I discern a quest for harmony, for beauty and for peacefulness. As a man who lives through his eyes, this yearning, this insistence is always with me.
I like working outdoors. Light, air and space are oxygen to me; and in general my images reflect that as they tend to be simple and direct – simply look and you can see. In my world, pictures are about subtle transfers of energy; tiny realignments, really – no drama, no upheavals. These for me are true moments.
And for all that I am deeply grateful to Paul Strand, Edward Steichen, Henri Cartier- Bresson, André Kertész, Irving Penn and a multitude of others for teaching me a way to look at things simply and directly – for the rest truly happens on its own and over time.
I am also grateful to and fascinated by the work of photographers like Bill Brandt for showing me that things and people will conform to how we choose to represent them; a reminder that each of us is often the creator of realities that are not just deeply personal but squarely beyond what is commonly known and accepted as the everyday experience.
Photography is all of that. It’s a big tent as politicians are fond to say. And somewhere in that tent you can find me, busy looking and seeing, joining this and that caucus, moving around, feeding my curiosity, happy.