Friday, August 1, 2014

Dog Park

By Grenadier Pond, High Park, 1990s
I DON'T KNOW AT PRECISELY WHAT POINT I began losing interest in editorial portrait work, but it was definitely just before I took this picture. At the turn of the '90s I would have told you that taking portraits of people for magazines and newspapers was pretty much all I wanted to do; on the verge of the millennium, I was desperate to do something else entirely.

Taken with a Rolleiflex in High Park, likely while on assignment for another job - I rarely just hit the streets with a camera and no task at hand. Influenced by people like photographer/illustrator Matt Mahurin, I'd begun using long shutters, selective focus and, in the darkroom, dry-mount tissue and diffusing gels to take the sharpness out and inject a lot of grain back into my photos.

I was desperate to put this sort of work in my portfolio, but hadn't a clue how to use it to sell myself for jobs. And I've never understood how the world of galleries and fine art photography worked. And so I took these photos furtively, storing prints away with no audience in mind. This one was found in the 5x7 box which, as I sift through its contents, is starting to feel more like a hope chest of frustrated ambition from the second decade of my career as a photographer.

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