Tuesday, July 29, 2008
That said, Lomography makes some pretty cool toy cameras that also have the bells and whistles. Here are just a few of my faves...
1. THE HOLGA
I totally love the Holga. When I took a trip to Mexico and it was too hot for my digital SLR to function, the Holga saved me. It's got a plastic lens, only a handful of choices - is it sunny or cloudy? - and the images have that beautiful vignetting. The possibility of light leaks can lead to wonderful surprises. You can get it with or without a flash, and now they make it in color! Nice. Don't forget the black tape to hold the camera together! You need 120 film for this camera.
The legendary Dollar Diana was made back in the 1960's. Now Lomo has come up with a new version. It costs more than $1 (the starter kit is $50), but it still has the same plastic lens, 2 shutter settings (daylight & "B"), 3 aperture settings, and manual focus that hail back to the original Diana. But on top of that, the Diana+ offers a removable lens and super-small aperture for pinhole images, two image formats (12 or 16 square shots on a standard 120 roll), an endless panorama feature that allows for unlimited and nearly seamless panoramic shots, and both a standard tripod thread & shutter lock for easy shake-free long exposures. Pretty sweet. Here's a sample of what you can do with the Diana+:
So the colorsplash camera from lomo basically has a flash with different colored filters that revolve around it. It also has an additional 9 filters included to exchange. Long exposures create dreamy streaked backgrounds behind crisp, color-flashed foregrounds. You need 35mm film for this baby.
4. THE SUPERSAMPLER
This light-weight plastic camera has four highly light-sensitive and precision Japanese panoramic lenses capture four sequential panoramic shots on a single photo. Pretty sweet. The supersampler takes 35mm film.
The also make fisheye lens cameras and a panoramic camera... So what are you waiting for? Summer is the perfect time to check out all these fun toys. Make sure to look at the "other cameras" section of their website.
Thursday, July 24, 2008
Seowoo and Her Pink Things, 2006 © JeongMee Yoon
JeongMee's images document young children in their rooms, surrounded by their color-coded clothes, toys, books and various other products.
Tess and Her Pink & Purple Things, 2006 © JeongMee Yoon
The fact that girls are brought up to like pink and that boys are taught to like blue, of course, is not a new discovery. But the way that JeongMee portrays her subjects is exciting. The girls and boys become lost in sheer amount of stuff. In some of the pictures, it is almost like the children turn into their own toys.
Jeonghoon and His Blue Things, 2008 © JeongMee Yoon
Interestingly enough, it used to be that boys were supposed to like pink, and girls were supposed to like blue. Pink used to be associated with masculinity because it was considered to be a watered-down version of red, which is associated with power. In 1914, The Sunday Sentinel, an American newspaper, told moms to “use pink for the boy and blue for the girl, if you are a follower of convention.” The color preference shift occurred only after World War II.
Ethan and His Blue Things, 2006 © JeongMee Yoon
Monday, July 21, 2008
I was very excited to learn that Kehinde Wiley has a new exhibition up at The Studio Museum in Harlem that opened this week. If you are not familiar with Kehinde's work, definitely check out his website for some more information.
Kehinde is known for his paintings of young, urban African-American men in poses and styles borrowed from eighteenth- and nineteenth-century European figurative paintings, like those by Ingres, Titian and Reynolds. (Those guys you typically learn about in art history classes).
He mostly paints unknown people, but has also recently painted a number of Hip Hop Artists and rappers, like LL Cool J, Ice T, Grandmaster Flash, and some others.
In his artist statement (which you can read on his site), Kehinde talks about how he applies the "visual vocabulary and conventions of glorification, history, wealth, power, and prestige to subject matter drawn from the urban fabric in which he is embedded," and therefore he "presents his young men as both heroic and pathetic, aestheticized and reified, autonomous and manipulated." He says that he "disturbs and interrupts tropes of portrait painting to locate class struggle at the level of sign."
By juxtaposing one class with another, he is able to bring them to the same level.
You can see the show at the Studio Museum through October 26, 2008.
The Studio Museum in Harlem
144 West 125th Street, New York, New York 10027
tel 212.864.4500 fax 212.864.4800
If you can't make it to Harlem, and Washington DC is more of your scene, he also has some paintings in The National Portrait Gallery right now. They are part of a group exhibition called RECOGNIZE: Hip Hop and Contemporary Portraiture. I saw this show a few weeks ago, and I have to say, Kehinde's paintings steal the show.
The museum is located at Eighth and F Streets, NW, D.C., 20001
Open 11:30 a.m.-7:00 p.m. daily and...like all the Smithsonian Museums in DC...it is free!
Honestly, do what you can to get to one of these shows. If I could recommend it any more strongly, I would.
Friday, July 18, 2008
That's right, The Girl Project has a brand new website, chock full of information, like how to participate, as well as a great listing of photography resources.
The best part, of course, is that you can check out a bunch of new photographs made by girls who are already participating in The Girl Project.
Click here to see more...
Tuesday, July 15, 2008
Click here to see some more...including an adorable 3 year old boy named Jermu. I have to warn you, it becomes addictive. And somehow you end up continuing to click on every image until you get to the first one in 2005. But it's worth it.
Friday, July 11, 2008
Cig Harvey, above.
Thursday, July 10, 2008
W. Eugene Smith is a legendary photojournalist who insisted that photography should always seek out the depth and humanity of its subjects. He was born in 1918 in Kansas, and became a photographer at age 13, and had his work published in many magazines by 21. He made his name photographing during WWII.
When he returned from the war, he created many photo essays for LIFE magazine. He worked on a series documenting a "country doctor", and made images like the one above.
In 1956, Smith left LIFE and began work on a ridiculously ambitious study of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He threw himself obsessively into the work, making more than 10,000 photographs, of which only 50 were used.
When Smith died in 1978, he left behind some 3,000 master prints, several hundred thousand 5x7" work prints, 1,600 audio tapes, 25,000 vinyl music records, 8,000 books, and just $18.
If you are in New York, don't miss the opportunity to see an exhibition of prints that Smith made himself. It is at Silverstein Gallery in Chelsea, and is on view until August 1, 2008.
W. Eugene Smith: The Art of History
535 West 24th Street
May 25 - Aug 1
Friday, July 4, 2008
In honor of America's independence day, I thought I 'd leave you with some of the most amazing photographs made in America to date. These photographs are a small selection from Robert Frank's legendary book, The Americans. If you don't have a copy of this book on your shelf, skip the picnic and head to a bookstore immediately.
As Jack Kerouac writes in the introduction to the book, "To Robert Frank I now give this message: You got eyes."
Wednesday, July 2, 2008
CALL FOR TEEN ARTISTS
1st Deadline: July 31, 2008
Guidelines can also be found here.
Soo Visual Arts Center is looking for committed and focused artists between the ages of 15-19 for a new exhibition program we will be starting in early 2009. This is an opportunity to exhibit your artwork in the Toomer Gallery at SooVAC. We are interested in artists working in all mediums: sculpture, painting, drawing, mixed media, photography, etc.
HOW TO APPLY:
Please email the following to firstname.lastname@example.org:
1. 5-10 JPEG images of your work, details can be included (NO larger than 500k per image). Please contact us if you are interested in sending video pieces.
2. Image list including title, medium, date and dimensions in .doc or .rtf format.
3. Contact information including your full name, age, address, phone and email.
If you have any questions please call 612.871.2263 or email email@example.com.
*If you do not have access to email we will accept all the above information on a CD by mail, please include a SASE (Self Addressed Stamped Envelope/make sure you have enough postage) if you want the CD returned:
Soo Visual Arts Center // 2640 Lyndale Ave. South // Minneapolis, MN 55408