Blog #184 11/17/16
The back of a model from West Africa; the length of her arms “made” this image for me.
I am frequently asked by other photographers some form of this question: “Where do you get your ideas?“
This project, a portfolio of many “portraits” of the backs of a wide range of human beings epitomizes my belief that there are ideas everywhere. Turn over a stone and there is a world of possibilities. Open a publication of any sort and there will be something new to see or read about or possibly a unique point of view on an otherwise familiar subject. Listen to an album of new or re-visited music – really listen – and the artist may speak to you in an original way, and the same with a recent or classic movie. Or just take a slow walk on city streets, where there are things to see, feel, and hear everywhere.
From my project entitled “Heavy.”
Ideas are everywhere, even in something that would at first seem to be very ordinary, even banal: the human back. While making all sorts of pictures – portraits, fashion editorials and ads, athletes, or even on or underwater– I often make time to photographically study a subject’s back. By now, I have an archive of the posterior torso of all kinds of people with all sorts of physical characteristics. Here is just a small sample of my “dorsal diary:”
A model, from a “Beauty/Body” study.
A serious body builder, note the asymmetry. Even with carefully developed bodies, complete symmetry is rare. For instance, take a look at yourself in the mirror: see how your two eyes are a bit different.
I was doing a portrait and saw the tatoos on her arm. Seeing the rest
was just a matter of a respectful request.
An NFL defensive player.
A woman body builder, featherweight class.
I saw this fellow at the gym, and simply asked.
Freestyle motocross champion.
Pro hockey player.
NFL Running back.
World Champion Iron Man (Woman) triathlete.
Champion boxer, cruiserweight.
A “regular” woman.
There are ideas, and photographs to make, everywhere.
Glitterati Incorporated, the publisher of the Retrospective, Schatz Images: 25 Years is now offering the two- book boxed set at a discount from the original price. The set comes with an 11″x14” print of the buyer’s choice.