No one can build you the bridge on which you, and only you, must cross the river of life. There may be countless trails and bridges and demigods who would gladly carry you across; but only at the price of pawning and forgoing yourself. There is one path in the world that none can walk […]
Consider this a plea to the Weston family, to the Adams estate, and to anyone who owns rights to the works of great photographers of the past to please make the investment in making these available in electronic format.
I am proud and grateful to announce the upcoming publication of my LensWork Monograph, The Least Impossible Way.
New $75 special-edition prints now available for ordering as holiday gifts.
There is a world of difference between a place as experience and partner in a lasting relationship, and a place considered as just a photographic subject. The latter does not interest me much.
The following article was originally published in On Landscape Magazine. Conflicts of Interest Save a piece of country like that intact, and it does not matter in the slightest that only a few people every year will go into it. That is precisely its value. Roads would be a desecration, crowds would ruin it. ~Wallace Stegner, […]
I paint objects as I think them, not as I see them. ~Pablo Picasso The great photographer Henri Cartier-Bresson characterized photography as recognizing “simultaneously and within a fraction of a second both the fact itself and the rigorous organization of visually perceived forms that give it meaning.” I sometimes joke that if Cartier-Bresson tried to make […]
Here I possessed nothing in the world. I was no more than a mortal strayed between sand and stars, conscious of the single blessing of breathing. And yet I discovered myself filled with dreams. ~Antoine de Saint-Exupery It’s summer in the desert. The intense silence on a hazy afternoon broken only by the soft whisper […]
It’s all so meaningless, we may as well be extraordinary. ~Francis Bacon As I have before, I found myself again struggling with the term, “meaningful.” It is a term I use quite frequently in my writing when relating to the things I want to experience and to express in my work—the things I consider the most profound and important […]
That Man is the product of causes which had no prevision of the end they were achieving; that his origin, his growth, his hopes and fears, his loves and his beliefs, are but the outcome of accidental collocations of atoms; that no fire, no heroism, no intensity of thought and feeling, can preserve an […]
A version of this essay originally appeared in Landscape Photography Magazine. ~~~ For art comes to you proposing frankly to give nothing but the highest quality to your moments as they pass, and simply for those moments’ sake. ~Walter Pater Among the reasons I prefer to work alone in the landscape is that I like […]
When the things one seeks to express in art are rooted in real, moving, inspiring, life-affirming, experiences; a constellation of spiritual effects converge.
I believe that curiosity, wonder, and passion are defining qualities of imaginative minds and great teachers; that restlessness and discontent are vital things; and that intense experience and suffering instruct us in ways less intense emotions can never do. ~Kay Redfield Jamison I had to visit the canyon again, not for any reason I could […]
What makes a place personal is not the photographs you take from it, but the experiences and moods and lessons you associate with it.
Nobody can counsel and help you, nobody. There is only one single way. Go into yourself. Search for the reason that bids you write; find out whether it is spreading out its roots in the deepest places of your heart, acknowledge to yourself whether you would have to die if it were denied you to […]
The most interesting aspect of these arts of Zen, as D. T. Suzuki has said, is that they don’t exist for the sole purpose of creating a work of art, but they are rather a method for opening the creative process. They comprise means of training the mind and of living our lives. ~John Daido […]
In a thoroughly commercialized society, an artist is respected if he makes money, and because he makes money, but there is no genuine respect for the works of art by which his money has been made. ~Bertrand Russell In a neighborhood where I used to live, for a short period of time, there was an Indian […]
There is nothing so wrong as accepting a thing merely because men who have done things say it should be so. ~Alfred Stieglitz Among the most rewarding and liberating things I have come to accept about my work is that much so-called “common sense” advice is entirely not applicable to accomplishing my creative goals. In fact, […]
Following on the success of our Visionary Death Valley workshops, Michael E. Gordon and I are proud to announce additional dates for 2016 and 2017. By participant demand, we decided to also add a new Processing and Printing offering following each Visionary Workshop, for those who wish to extend their stay, or for anyone who is interested […]
People say that what we’re all seeking is a meaning for life. I don’t think that’s what we’re really seeking. I think that what we’re seeking is an experience of being alive, so that our life experiences on the purely physical plane will have resonances with our own innermost being and reality, so that we […]
Pictures are exciting when they say something in a new manner, not for the sake of being different, but because the individual is different and the individual expresses himself. ~Harry Callahan It seems there are three classes of photographers who venture to instruct others: there are those who teach technical skills and offer simple formulas […]
The print edition of my book, More Than a Rock, is now shipping from Amazon and other book sellers. PDF and other eBook editions are available from the publisher, Rocky Nook. From the publisher: Ostensibly about landscape photography, More Than a Rock: Essays on Art, Creativity, Photography, Nature, and Life is a passionate and personal book […]
Be eager to lend a patient ear to the opinions of others and think long and hard whether whoever finds fault has reason or not to censure you. And if the answer is yes, correct the fault. If no, give the impression that you have not heard him, or if he is a man whom […]
Nature does not create works of art. It is we, and the faculty of interpretation peculiar to the human mind, that see art. –Man Ray I recently saw a photograph hailed as “the” shot of a certain oft-photographed mountain. What made it “the” shot was the presence of spectacular sunset sky, which indeed was impressive […]
So long as we have failed to eliminate any of the causes of human despair, we do not have the right to try to eliminate those means by which man tries to cleanse himself of despair. –Antonin Artaud It was with some delight that I recently received an academic text on photography that I had […]
I have studied the art of the masters and the art of the moderns, avoiding any preconceived system and without prejudice. I have no more wanted to imitate the former than to copy the latter; nor have I thought of achieving the idle aim of art for art’s sake. –Gustave Courbet Despite having the opportunity, […]
This essay was originally published in my monthly column in Landscape Photography Magazine. Please consider subscribing to this excellent online publication. ~~~ We have an unknown distance yet to run, an unknown river to explore. What falls there are, we know not; what rocks beset the channel, we know not; what walls ride over the […]
My sincere thanks to editor Brooks Jensen and the wonderful staff at LensWork Magazine for featuring my work in the magazine’s upcoming edition (#119), which will be the first to include color. In addition to this momentous change, LensWork is now offering special pricing for new and renewing subscribers. If you are not already a […]
Technology is the knack of so arranging the world that we do not experience it. –Rollo May Speaking about the role of the artist in conservation, Ansel Adams proclaimed, “The curse of all art is the patina of sentimentality.” Perhaps a curious observation from one who devoted much of his life and work to promote […]
In the arching immensity of the night, each tells the story of his life, each offers the other the burden of memories in which the human bond is discovered. –Antoine de Saint-Exupery With the experiences of the recent Moab Photography Symposium still fresh in my mind, and with my thinking still a little fuzzy as I’m […]