Category Archives: In-Camera Project

In-Camera Photos and Memory

Laurie says:

I talked about the idea that one of the things the photos might be about is memory, when I last posted about them.  I’m realizing that it’s true.  Their size and imagery is strongly reminiscent of the way my visual memory flashes intense internal images.  And I just realized something that probably should have been obvious to me. (The obvious in my work often blindsides me.) All of the images are from places that I live or go, that are central in my life.  I haven’t been going out looking for photos.  I’ve been seeing them in my normal moving through the world.  This strongly suggests some visual narrative ideas to me but I’m going to ignore them, and wait and see what evolves.

This is a quote on memory that resonates strongly for me.  It’s from a remarkable memoir, Giving Up The Ghost by Hilary Mantel.  (She also wrote Wolf Hall, which won the Booker this year.)

“ … We are born with our sensibilities; perhaps we are conceived that way.  Part of our difficulty in trusting ourselves is that in talking of memory we are inclined to use geological metaphors.  We talk about buried parts of our past and assume the most distant in time are the hardest to reach:  that one has to prospect for them with the help of a hypnotist or psychotherapist.  I don’t think memory is like that:  rather that it is like Saint Augustine’s “spreading limitless room.”  Or a great plain, a steppe, where the memories are laid side by side, at the same depth, like seeds under the soil.”

The two photos below were taken on the stairs of the Mechanics Library. It’s a private library in San Francisco that I belong to.

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Writing about the work here has definitely been good for me.  It gives a context to think in that seems to accelerate my perceptions about it.

New In-Camera Project Images

Laurie says:

I was thinking about memory today. Mine is pretty non-linear. Rather like the medieval christian god’s view of time, i.e. it’s all happening in one total timeless view.   My memories tend to be small vivid flashes unless I”m consciously trying to remember. Then they can be far more complex, detailed and linear (if needed).

The In-Camera Project images are somewhat reflective of my memory in their vividness and their size. This doesn’t necessarily mean there is a connection, but it’s interesting to think about. In the early stages of a project there are always different threads to follow, and often it turns out that they weave together.

These are the new photos.

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This is a stained glass window that looks out on my garden.

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This is view of a quince bush in the garden.