Yesterday, we discussed how to stay fresh in seeing a scene. Here is someone who manages to keep a fresh eye in his photography works, John Marrocco from Florida of the United States.
John has been passionately involved in the art and technique of photography for over 30 years. Sometimes working professionally, but mostly not. Currently make his living in boating related endeavours and living to make his photographs. He writes that, “I photographs because I have to….to feed my soul. The not-so-profound draws me in. Mundane objects we see and pass every day. Most go by without notice. The photographs posted in my blog are as I see it.”
The following photos are themed on the boardwalk by John.
(Boardwalk, Flagler Beach, Florida. Foggy morning on the pier. The dedications carved into the planking were interesting. Nevin: I especially like this foggy shot. The silhouette of the man makes an important reference to the heavy “foggy-ness”, and a sense of depth too. The atmosphere is adequately conveyed)
By John Marrocco: It is difficult sometimes to stay fresh, it is primarily why I try and shoot at the same locations...to see what more is there. I have worked at a marina for almost 25 years and it is the most difficult place for me to photograph. There are wonderful images there, however I have a hard time finding them.
I have been shooting everyday since getting my GX200. The camera has freed me to just go out and shoot and there is a difference between the feeling with digital and film, though it’s hard to put into words. I often feel a lack of freshness in my shooting...even when its not always justified. I think it’s the nature of photography (and other arts) to doubt that what you are doing means anything. To me mostly it’s just a matter of doing it because it’s simply enjoyable.
By Nevin: The first time I visited John’s blog, I was amazed by the quality of freshness in his photos. You see, there is actually not really much to be photographed on empty beaches, not least if you shoot the boardwalk again and again. Inexperienced photographers would have simply walked past and missed a lot of the wonderful shots John managed to impress us. When I looked at the photos, I wished I could go naked and jump into the scene for a swim at once. His photos have a crisp, simple and fresh character. Simple but powerful; this is a style having been developed after years of practices for sure.
Fact is, it is not easy to stay fresh when you have taken photos for, in John’s case, over 30 years.
Look at the first parking meter photo. I would have missed this shot if it were me. Besides freshness, it expresses the state of being of the photographer: calm and observant. This is pretty much an area which photography is about: to reveal a photographer’s mind in a photo. And probably practising a calm and observant mind is the secret to the success of staying fresh in photography. Well done and thank you, John.
(Published with courtesy and copyright of John Marrocco. Some texts are reproduced from John’s wordpress site, with some photo titles slightly adjusted by Nevin for illustration’s sake)