An Eerie Collection of Photographs
I saw it on the CBS News website. It was a slideshow of photographs of dogs sitting in cars. The photographs are the work of Martin Usborne which were published in a book called The Silence of Dogs in Cars. According to the CBS website, which I recommend you visit:
Fine art photographer Martin Usborne has a unique vision of man’s best friend. His book The Silence of Dogs in Cars is a entrancingly intense emotional study based on his memory of being once once left in a car as a child. “I don’t know when or where or for how long, possibly at the age of four, perhaps outside a supermarket, probably for fifteen minutes only. The details don’t matter. The point is that I wondered if anyone would come back. The fear I felt was strong: in a child’s mind it is possible to be alone forever.”
That deep-seated fear and his affinity for dogs led to his often dark series of images where very often the canines look sad or bereft, gazing forlornly through car windows, but really show a range of emotions … not unlike humans. The cinematic photos reinforce the connection between people and dogs.
The name of the dog in the above photo is Buzz. This is my favorite photo of the lot.
It was my friend Bill Korn who told me about him. Now Bill is no mean astrophotographer himself, though he has several counts again him by virtue of living in Southern California, where the sky is often milky white with clouds or smog.
Thierry Legault is perhaps one of the great astrophotographers, as can be seen from visiting his website at http://www.astrophoto.fr where a number of his best photographs are on view. I have also taken the liberty of creating a permanent link to his website from here.
Usually, I end to be fairly lax about seeking permission to reproduce photographs on my website; but I thought I would make an exception in the case of M. Legault because I admire his work so much.
Shown here are just three examples from M. Legault’s website.
Paris 1838: Do You See the Man at the Lower Left?
This is one of my favorite firsts: In 1838, Louis Daguerre photographed a man getting a shoeshine on the Boulevard du Temple. Is it strange that no one else is around? Actually, the street is crowded with vehicles and pedestrians; but because they’re all in motion, the long exposure time (ten minutes) required for the first daguerrotypes didn’t pick them up. The man at the lower left getting a shoeshine, on the other hand, is standing still. Because the shoe shiner’s arms are in motion, they don’t show up in the image, making him look armless, like a fire hydrant. Neither person has ever been identified.
Below is a close-up of the man getting his shoeshine:
The Red Arrow is Pointing at the First Human Being Ever To Be Photographed
See PetaPixel, my source for this posting.
Inca Photographer Martín Chambi Jiménez
One of the problems with photography as an art form is that the viewpoint is usually that of a European or North American. It would have been wonderful to have photographs taken by native Navaho or Tibetan or Zulu photographers so that we could see the world from their unique perspective. One rare exception is the work of a native of Cusco, Peru, the indigenous Inca Martín Chambi Jiménez (1891-1973). Through his eyes, we see the locals of Cusco, the ruins of Machu Picchu, the back country natives, and whatever caught his eye. Below, for instance, is portrait of four young Quechuan campesinas:
And here is an eagle’s eye view of the ruins at Machu Picchu:
Overlooking the Ruins
If you would like to see a collection of his photographs, you can find some interesting examples on Google Image.
Russian Boy with Bunny
Quite by chance, I ran into a website showing selected photographs from Elena Shumilova at today.com. Her pictures were a revelation to me: Imagine the most beautiful scenes of Russian farm life, children, and animals—and take it to the power of ten! You can see more of her work at 500px.com, along with a portrait of the photographer.
There is something so warm and tactile about Shumilova’s photographs that I could not even imagine anything better on the theme. Having read Ivan Turgenev’s Sketches from a Hunter’s Notebook, Anton Chekhov’s The Steppe, and Nikolai Leskov’s The Enchanted Wanderer, I have long marveled at the Russians’ love of their countryside. It is as if Shumilova’s photographs opened a window into these authors’ hearts.
Common Household Dust Magnified by an Electron Microscope
One would not think that regular household dust, when magnified by an electronic microscope, could look so artistic. In fact, if I saw a painting like this hanging in an art museum, I would think that here was a painter who had considerable promise.
But then I think of this stuff being sucked into my lungs and down my throat and wonder how I can survive. After all, things are being manufactured with ever more exotic materials; and the detritus from these materials is being sucked into our bodies. Maybe I should look for an electron microscope photograph of our lungs or our bloodstream.
This photo comes from The Guardian’s website, which directs you to other examples of microphotography. Happy hunting!