Thursday, January 20, 2011


Bless Photoshop, for I have been able to resurrect  a series of photos from those dark years,  a floundering time,  otherwise known as experimentation in  motivations  as well as new techniques. Manipulation does little for the former, yet to enhance and rid the frame of distractions can apply lipstick to rougher pearls.

I have a sizable bin of old snaps, processed film and slides. Not all of it is art-related, family and travels having places as well. Once every couple of years I go through the container. Reasons and purpose vary. However, with the recent purchase of a new and more time-efficient scanner, plus the dictum regarding affairs needing ordered, I searched once more to determine the amount of work ahead of me.

Dark: I suppose I should clarify. Largely unseen.  Note the qualification, for as my DD reminded me the other evening, she remembers well shelves full of the clay figures and the boxes of their adornments (perhaps wondering at that young age why Daddy had more toys than she). Simply, there was little prolonged interest nor opportunity to share my otherwise prodigious efforts.

I mentioned in a previous  post working with live models. While realizing early-on a body at which to gaze did little to help in my sculpture, other avenues could be explored,  especially with photography, to capture the same dynamic qualities of the clay pieces, and I arranged for friends to pose.

In their original format, the above photos were  raw. Although I used black matte foamcore for backdrops, the seams, dents and dings in the dark surfaces are still very much visible. And in keeping with the theme of darkness, in the one small exhibit of this body of work, I adjusted for the roughness of the images by mounting them in unusual sizes and frames. The idea was to add enough artifice to distract from imperfections, thereby allowing the viewer to eventually focus on the central form.

Now (yesterday), the bucket tool in Photoshop has allowed me to get rid of the backdrop (not so with all of the dust).

 What do you think?


TenMile said...

Whole raft of 'why didn't you's' that don't amount to much. Good stuff. Those last two bother me - they seem to die at the shoulder blades up. I'll think of something nasty and biting to say later.


Unknown said...

While I know nothing about art, except if I like something or not, looking at these pictures illicits strong feelings in me and I have no idea why. They are as smooth as frosting on a wedding cake and as ethereal as a cloud. Tenuous, like if I dared to touch them they would crumble. I especially like the next to beautiful, delicate and tender. Thank you for sharing.

Anonymous said...

I rarely in the past twenty years have discussed the influence of Alan Watts in my thinking.

As much of a fuzzy headed new ager that I consider him to be, I also respect his communicative skills.

Mere prelude to saying

There is no figure without background.

In this case, I humbly state, darken the background if you must, but don't disappear it.


Forrest Gump said...

I think 172 is my favorite - the lines are beautiful.

There's something menacing about the one below, 171 i think. Actually, it reminds me of the Aphex Twin "Come to Daddy" video towards the end when the create 'emerges'.

Awesome work mate.

bastinptc said...

Thanks for all of the kind words. As for the black background, I'm not completely sold on it. I'm also thinking sepia tone. This is the first attempt at scanning the work. If I am going to do it right, I'll need to increase resolution and size, get rid of the dust, plus try a few other tricks. Yet, again, I must say it's nice to get the positive comments.