17 November 2007

One camera, one lens, one film, one developer

"Most of the time, from 1959 - 2007, I have used one camera body with one lens. Different cameras of course through the years but it´s the M Leica with a 35 mm lens that have served me best. The Swedish photographer Christer Strömholm once said: "one camera, one lens, one film, one developer." And my understanding of that statement was: be sure to master the tools you´ve got completely - and you can focus on the act of creating pictures. My approach to photography nowadays is very much this: one camera, one lens. Straight ahead photography, straight photography or whatever you may call it is another. Just think about all the pictures we have seen through the years from Julia Margaret Cameron´s portraits of the 19th century to pictures by Bruce Davidson, Vinogrand, Robert Frank - just to mention a few. Almost all of them were pictures of people - and the photographers were close to their motifs in more than one way. The cool and fancy pictures that you find in many photo magazines will probably guarantee the future of the photo magazines and their contributing photographers. But will these pictures prevail and be recognized in the future? I don´t think so. There is something lacking. That is why I believe in straight ahead photography or straight photography and a photography that is close to the people, to the activity of humans. This is the photography of the future in my point of view." - Bengt Björkbom

I value the words of Bengt. He is an experienced photographer and his conclusion is somewhat challenging. How about dedicating the F Blog to some straight ahead photography the coming weeks? I have noticed an interesting approach by my coeditor Anders Blomqvist, who has published the series "Colour Box Scenery". Pictures coming directly from his cell phone camera. No editing, no post processing; "Devoid of flim-flam; devoid of trickery". I also come to think of Sally Mann and her work. Wow...this could be an interesting journey. Beginning today with some pictures by Bengt Björkbom. To be continued.../ulf

La Cumbia del Mole - Lila Downs

Lila is coming to town!

On 1 - 2 December Lila Downs will perform in Stockholm. Isn´t she just what we need in a deep and dark December? Lila...te quiero! /ulf

For program check this out.

So what´s the connection to photography. Well Frida Kahlo to start with. Lila is singing on the soundtrack of the film about Frida. And as you, dear reader of the F-blog, already know there are many small, but beautiful things to find in our archives about Frida. Check out Nickolas Muray and
Manuel Alvarez Bravo etc. The story continues...