“More Pinhole work…”


I realize that my postings are in danger of becoming pretty boring. My going down and making pinhole exposures of the buildings on our main street is not filled with high drama or excitement – I hope! Yesterday it just clicked with me that I was embarking on one of those typology photo projects made famous by the German photographers Bernd and Hilla Becher. Now there are a couple of problems with my doing that type of work.Firstly I don’t much care for the Becher’s work, and secondly the concept of ‘typecasting’ people or objects photographically, or otherwise into groups really makes the hair on the back of my neck stand up. So, what am I doing undertaking that kind of photography. The truth is that I have been photographing in that part of town on and off for a long time now. Long enough to realize that, as things go these days, not much has happened here from the standpoint of changes or re-development. Now, that will not always be the case. Either a hurricane will surely rearrange things here one of these days, or some developer will get serious and impose some drastic changes on the area. So, with the darkroom facilities in the Arts Center available and close by, it is relatively easy to go out with my 4×5 inch pinhole camera and photograph the street.
If you care to look at the previous two postings you might be able to figure out how all three photographs are connected to each other. It’s a bit tricky since I am using the distored panorama format by putting bent, 10-inch long pieces of enlarging paper into the camera.
For the first phase of the project I am going to photograph Every Structure on the North Side of Second Street. I have picked that side of the street ’cause it is easier to photograph, especially with a pinhole camera, using paper negatives. Photographing the north side I will always have the sun coming in over my back/shoulder, making it much easier to get a decent exposure.

About christian harkness

Photographer and printmaker; living and working in north Florida.
This entry was posted in art, black & white, cedar key, cedar key photography, documentary, fl 32625, Florida, landscape, photography, pinhole, Southern Photography, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to “More Pinhole work…”

  1. Would it be too much of an in-joke to say that your work and the Bechers’ could be said to be “similar but different”?

    In fact there’s very little similarity, other than that at the moment you’re following a selected theme. However (and here we come up against that typecasting you rightly disapprove of), the Bechers were deliberately manufacturing a theme of similarity in order to point out the subtle differences from one shot to the next. From my point of view, once you’ve seen one cement factory or chemical works, you’ve seen them all (or, at any rate, enough to be going on with). They got good greys, though.

    Your themed works, especially these and the water women, have a narrative all of their own that is fascinating, particularly to someone like me from the other side of the pond. Keep them coming.

  2. Hey Martyn, a million thanks for your intelligent, insightful and supportive comments. I sure appreciate that! You probably detected that my problem with the Becher’s work is rather deep seated, and just coming anywhere close to it gives me pause. Again, many thanks!

  3. Dave says:

    Now do another series, the south side. But do it at night.
    Opposite sides of the street, day and night.

  4. Now wait a minute, you want me to stand out there in the -coming – hot and buggy nights and do six hour pinhole exposures??? !! :)
    I love photography, but…….Maybe when I get my next generating digital camera with that great ISO 3200 capability. Hey that would be cool, day/night – pinhole/digital ……maybe you got something there. Thanks Dave – :)

  5. simon0252 says:

    Marvellous series of images and a great project. The distorted panorama format is superb! Inspiring work.

  6. Thanks Simon! It is always good to get your ‘take’ on things. I am looking forward to seeing your lighthouse pinholes.

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