I’ve been taking (and storing) photographs since about 1970 and I’m unsure when my eye for photography first began to be a dominant force in my life. All I recall is that many adults around me were very good photographers and I was encouraged by their interests. I grew up in a world where having a camera to hand was as normal as holding a cigarette and perhaps a glass of malt or a glass of wine. In fact, a third hand might have been useful to many of the adults I knew.[Read more…] about Photo Challenges and Stories
We moved to the US in 1981, the year that Roland Barthes’ final book Camera Lucida was posthumously published in English translation. I had no more knowledge of this book then than I had any notion that my interest in photography would take a back seat for nearly a decade. This is neither whinge nor regret. It was simply that life, family, work and financial imperatives had to prevail.
I had already retired by the time a copy of Camera Lucida found its way to me. Indeed it was, in part, a retirement gift, intended as a torch to light the future rather than illuminating the past. Let me say that forty years after publication, I have found great insight into my own interest in photography through the pages in this book. I have come to see how and why some of the perfections that photographer friends have chased have not mattered quite so much to me.[Read more…] about Reading Barthes Helps