I've just added some new pictures to the site called "The Field." Take a look: here.
Head out to Medfield, MA right through town and out to the site of the Medfield State Hospital, drive right past the incredibly beautiful red brick buildings of the "campus", past the old and new water towers to the back side where there is a huge field.
That's where I've been working this week.
The hospital used to grow its own food so it's easy to understand the size of this field. My formula? Flat light, very careful wide angle work with several trips back to correct, reshoot, reframe and try to perfect (never possible but I still try). This project comes at a very good time for me as, since recovering from both hips being replaced this past winter, there has been little new work. In the early spring I finished a series called Zinc but that was work started earlier, last fall. The well has been relatively dry since then. This is a glacial pace for someone who has been traditionally very prolific. I think full recovery takes longer than I thought but truthfully, it has taken me a while to love what I do again. I am pleased to see that love returning in these pictures.
Some lead-in pictures
Some establishing pictures
Some confrontational pictures
including an epic crop of poison ivy growing up the fence. Then a few that I like to think of as substantive
like this one, the bike sitting there day after day each time I went back. What is the story? Where is its owner? Love a mystery.
This is a way of making pictures I've been using since the early 80's called Series Work. If you've read this blog before you know there are many. This way of working lies at the core of whatever I've made as a career photographer. These are sequenced pictures, one sitting next to another as in pages in a book. There is a beginning, a middle, usually a climax and an ending. There is a narrative, as abstract and obtuse as it may seem. Many of my series prescribe a path around a place or an area, as does this one. The Field is 18 photographs with two used as bookends, or framing pieces. Here's the opener:
an old park bench at the edge of the campus showing its age as there is a small tree growing right up through it and then the closer.
that perhaps it is not so difficult to tell is in color, to bring us out of the altered state of black and white and very wide lens. This one made with a longer focal length and normal perspective. Again the full series lives here.
Now, you and I both know that this blog and this online presentation is an extremely poor representation of the real work, which is printed on 22 x 17 inch paper and is quite simply, extraordinary. I know, a very bold statement and yet it's not bragging if it's true, right? You really do owe it to yourself to see the actual prints as I have something of a reputation as a very good printer. See if I've lived up to the hype.