I was intrigued by the Victor Burgin quotation in the course notes, ‘I am referring to the universally familiar phenomenon of looking at one image and having another image spontaneously come to mind.’ because it happened to me when I first saw the Karsh portrait of Georgia O’Keefe.
I had no idea at the time why images of Antelope Canyon came to mind so strongly, so it is worth taking a couple of sentences to explore. I think the first connection was with textures, the texture of the canyon wall is reflected in the adobe wall behind the subject. There is also the slender grace of her pose, small in frame, which reflects the space between the canyon walls. The lighting in both images is strong and directional. Finally, there may be a subliminal message in the skull and antlers high on the wall. If I did not know the name of the canyon, would I have made the same connection?
You may already have taken some homage photography where you’ve not tried to hide the original inspiration but rather celebrated it. Refer back to your personal archive and add one or two to your learning log together with a short caption to provide a context for the shot. (EYV course notes p108)
The mono image of the girl with a Voigtländer Brillant connected with me because it is an unusual sort of portrait and because I like old cameras. This is one of the few times that I have made a conscious attempt to emulate a photograph I have seen. With my image of Victoria we used a Rolleicord and went for an informal pose; the lotus position fills the frame better when the background is bland. The early shots from the sequence had her looking down into the viewfinder, but I prefer this one where I asked her to glance up at me. The judge at my camera club liked it as well, and it won the portrait competition that year.
During the EYV course I have attempted to emulate photographers in two of the assignments. Assignment 2 was a blatant tip of the hat to the Bechers. In Assignment 4, I was influenced by Rut Blees Luxemburg’s night-time intimate cityscapes.