As I returned home yesterday I parked the car near to my house in order to post some letters, normally I would have driven on and walked back, no idea why on this occasion I decided to stop and I noticed this on the short walk to the post-box, and because I had cameras in the car after returning from the Echoes Group I was able to return quickly and make the image above. The light, from the sun was being reflected from a window opposite to the fence, so the light source was behind the fence. I thought the image had a beauty about it, strong contrast, framed within the frame, abstraction with a hint of realism about it. I knew I didn’t have long, that this image was in the process of moving on, this transient image would of course have been moving in opposition to it’s own source and with no sense of permanence, it’s transitory presence reminding me of what Jason Evan’s had described at the conference in Westminster – that magical light on a Wednesday afternoon at 4 o’clock ( the time and day of course merely symbolic). Maybe it’s been all that war photography that has impelled me to look for beauty, although I found it in heaps in some of the imagery in use for the documentary photographer – it’s use there as an enticement to allure the viewer into a discourse. Maybe I’m becoming to overcome my distrust of the beauty in my own images – which relates to my own motivations learned/ingrained over decades of image making – that have always been there to entice. Maybe I need to allow myself the privilege of acknowledging that so long as the motivation isn’t cynical, that the purpose of the image is to be able to engage and communicate, then it is permissible for me to employ beauty in the image. It is difficult though.
Inspired by the encouragement I felt with this image and from conversations around it with Anne, Stephanie and Clive I went out again to look for more inspiration. Looking for emotional responses to an environment that has held me like no other community has or will ever likely do come the following.