Purple sunset

Purple sunset

PDF Week 17/2016: Canon 7D, 50mm (on 18-200mm lens), 0.3 sec, f5.6, ISO 100.

He was an artistic sunrise that could not be reduced to purple rain. This morning the news that Prince has died is all over the media. When there is such a thing as commercialised music to be refreshing, Prince's music warranted a shower of innovative ideas combined with what we were used to. Some of his music was like a nudibranch for ears, tormenting at times when radio stations didn't know the limits of hammering the colour purple into our brains, smearing the beautiful make-up in that much rain. If not for the reigning of commercial pop culture, I'd be tempted to kiss Prince's musical legacy goodbye. And I know that many of my friends are among the mourners.

The colour purple stands for more than music and motion pictures. It doesn't do justice to reduce today's theme and the legacy of Prince to purple. Nevertheless, I decided to present my picture 'Purple sunset' for Photo Discussion Friday, today. Sadness comes from this photo for me personally. These days, many photographers have started to introduce their photos trying to dispel a curse - disclosing their involvement in the Adobe pact and its use for artistic purposes. It feels ridiculous to even mention it because it serves no purpose other than to ask for recognition of a photo, not even the photographer (who normally is an expert in Photoshop and photo manipulation).

Here I declare what should be obvious and irrelevant (but is not any longer): This photo came out of the camera exactly like this, is totally unedited, totally unmanipulated, no colour correction, no filters, just changed from raw format into jpg and copyright watermark added. The purple is true, the sunset colours real, the focus deliberate - as true as it gets on your computer screen.

'Nature as Art' was the theme for a competition. Let me spare you my interpretation and thoughts why this photo fits that bill for me. It was rejected, not even considered to be looked at properly. It did worse than about 99% of all the competition entries. It must be bad - so bad that it fits my bill of being discussed here. And yet, I love the photo with all its imperfections or maybe because of them. I love that the photo is honest, I love the interaction within a colour scheme, the communication of forms and lines. I love the dreamy blurriness. That is why I deemed it fit to be judged by people who I attest a fine photographic background.

The biggest gift of photography as art, to me, is not the true depiction of reality but to transpire a sense of feelings and to create a mood by which the photographer manages to connect to other people. Some forms of photography are like music. You need to listen to them and feel them. Adobe culture seems to have lost that connection. We only listen to patterns, tunes and rhythms we know and recognise. Like at music concerts, it is often the unbearable loudness and the hysterically cheering and stampeding crowd that quality is measured with. We often block tunes if there is too much of controversy in it. Prince was a star to balance that act and often managed to have the crowd follow his experimental leads.

With respect to photos, more and more, I disconnect with perfect focus, contours and colours. I am bored with the rules of the game, with the same repetitions and phrases that I personally use. To me, it feels like we are in a Neo-Realism in terms of photography. For the Adobe cult, it is not even about careful preservation of a perceived reality any longer. It is moreso about creating the perfectly artificial photo of what us as artists think the rest of the world thinks reality looks like or should look like. Maybe inspired by the Canadian Prime Minister, we could call it a Quantum-Realism, where we don't really know anything about reality but everything about the statistical probability of it and how we can make it work for us.

The many ear worms we hear daily on the radio are not supposed to block our antennas (rhinophores) for the voices around us that are true and real. They might, however, make the pendulum of art swing into some areas and forms that are hard to digest. But I am sure that we will see some deconstruction and reconstruction, some failed and some successful experiments in the future. Prince was a king to make this a rather smooth and pleasant experience. May he rest in peace and away from all the noise.

Powered by SmugMug Owner Log In