These days, when any three-year-old with a smartphone can point and shoot photos and video, I attempt to be creative with mine. I aim my lens in the vintage traditions of Ansel Adams, Dorthea Lange and Mathew Brady. I never pose shots, and the subjects are not aware of my camera.
I seek moments that never happened before nor will ever happen again. In my advanced age of 92, I look for common daily scenes that become interesting juxtapositions to my educated eye. (BFA, Philadelphia Museum College of Art, 1951). Other artists have portrayed creativity in everyday objects. Van Gogh’s fields of wheat, Jackson Pollock’s splashes of paint, Andy Warhol’s cans of soup.
It seems most younger people are too busy. bored, stoned, smartphoned and/or distracted to seek out such unique happenings. Fortunately, I’m not the typical elderly TV couch potato. I prefer to experience live humor, drama and tragedy as they occur daily on the streets.
Who needs to be stupefied indoors by TV? My daily pictorial enjoyment is total, and surrounds me out on the street. I’m never interrupted every five minutes with endlessly repeated ads. I don’t have to endure pitches for miracle snake oil medications, fatty fast foods, TV cable enrollment pitches nor overpriced gas guzzling cars.
So, be alert! Whatever interesting things you’re doing out there today, my eyes and camera may be staring at you. And that includes your handsome four-footed companion!