Fishing for creativity

On a good day creativity feels like a trampoline, and on a bad day it feels like a fishnet that’s woven too loosely to catch any fish.

Standing on the cusp of a new idea or direction, I can easily become wound so tight about achieving a goal that I forget how to relax into the process of seeing.

In the summer issue of Aperture magazine I read a liberating article by Joel Smith, entitled Photographs of Nothing. In the past few months, I’ve been toying with different ways of seeing and shooting that are a total contraction to my norm. It’s a rocky road to juggle the two while abandoning neither. In an interesting way this article gave me permission to keep at it. Smith created a set of 5 guidelines for making photographs of nothing. This is guideline #2:

“Invent an aesthetic mode that is identifiably photographic, yet non-representational, abstract. Create a photograph that is not a photograph of by strategically outwitting (or, as a snapshooter, fortuitously, failing) the medium. Lose track of the horizon. Exclude the subject (for the camera, or the negative, and so on). Assign light a performative instead of an interpretive function. Leave us guessing.”


About Carol Dragon

Carol Dragon is a New York City photographer who focuses on portraiture. Her dramatic approach to capturing the essence of her subjects is done in a style reminiscent of master painters and yet is very much her own. Carol is one of the featured photographers in the recently released 100 New York Photographers by Cynthia Dantzig. She has a BFA and a MFA from Rhode Island School of Design. Her client list includes CBS, Scholastic Publishing, AOL Time Warner and Anson Mills. She is available for commissioned work worldwide.
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