Monday 27 February 2012

what is beauty

what is beautiful

things are going to change around here.

i have been thinking for a long while about this question of beauty. and the question of art.

when i first started taking pictures some three or four years ago, everything i shot was very instinctive. i am a visual person. i feel drawn to light and shadows, contrast, shapes, colours. i frame certain things, and that i do in a particular way. a way that is informed by a certain aesthetic.

only this aesthetic has been changing rather radically in the past year.

i feel more and more at odds with my own photography. i'm looking at images and think: pretty, but i don't like it. or rather: that's not what i want at all. it may be beautiful, but it's got nothing at all to do with my vision.

more and more often i feel i'm not being true to myself in posting pretty pictures that are falling far behind what i'm really after. i've been debating this for a long time. i wondered whether i'm being precious. or deluding myself in thinking that i'm even able to do anything else than pretty pictures.

i also realise that many people might like pretty pictures far better than what i have in mind. that i might be on my own if i go through with this. i don't want to disappoint, i don't want to offend. but at the end of the day, i have to stick to what i believe in.

this is all tied in with the big questions about beauty, about art. it would be too easy to emulate the style of artists i admire, and it wouldn't be true. i've had very close ties with art book publishing, including art photography, for many years, and i've been an avid reader online, following many inspiring photographers' work over time. i could rattle off a list of names, i could analyse the kind of aesthetic that gets me. but what would it help? even in art photography, there are trends. morbid poses, stark lighting, melancholia, crudeness, vast landscapes, night shots, flash etc. etc. and what good would it do to mindlessly imitate.

i'm not saying ugly is the new pretty. but i guess i'm saying beauty is more profound than a beautiful surface. and that it is tied in, for me, with a certain depth that is fed by something beyond that particular picture i'm taking this moment.

the bottom line is, i have to find my own way. and it may be a bumpy road indeed. there may be stretches of silence. there may be work you'd find very odd. i don't even know myself.

you know, take care in high winds.


danica said...

Beautifully written, Kristina. I completely get where you're coming from: it is easy for inspiration to get in the way of cultivating your own unique voice (irrespective of what field you're in). I am sure that whatever direction you take will be excellent...or maybe even "pretty" in its own way :)

Marion said...

Go ahead lady. I understand so well your beautiful words. I am happy and excited to see where you'll go.

isabelle said...

very inspiring words kristina
i can' wait to see how your work is going to change

Nancy // and while we are here said...

Thanks for those words. And I am very exciting to see them transfered into your work.

jane said...

i´m sure you´ll find you way with style and aplomb. can´t wait to see where you end up. :)
big hugs!

jana said...

ich bin sehr sehr gespannt. du triffst mal wieder die richtigen worte irgendwie.

Unknown said...

it's all about the journey, an creating your own map as you go. I completely understand your uncertainty and questioning; authenticity is the key and I have had the same dilemma myself recently.

Jenna said...

this, kristina, was so wonderfully written, and i understand almost exactly where you are coming from. i feel that my eye has changed throughout the years, but putting a finger on just where it is now is hard to do. i find myself almost nauseated with all of the perfection and pretty that i see on the internet these days, sometimes it's alright to look at, but i'm looking for something else as well. cheers to change.

Pascale said...

Jenna said exactly what i wanted to say. And you too !!!
What you are feeling is right. So go ahead !

la ninja said...

beholder. eye. doing exaclty what you ******* want. even if you don't know what that is. that's the beauty of it and that's beauty :)