Second part of my essay and thoughts about projects in photography. Short summary: I was shooting gas stations to learn about how Hopper’s famous painting „Gas“ works. So, in order to do so I was looking for a similar scenery that I was looking at in his picture. I found it, oddly enough, on my daily commute to work – in a building that I never noticed before.
As I stated in the previous post, the discovery of the architectural object may have been accidental. That which followed wasn’t, however. The decision to make this in to a project was very deliberate. The choices to start the project were very deliberate, too. I deliberately chose to shoot close-ups of the object first. The „getting a feel“ of the object can be very easily achieved in architecture, because you can actually walk into and around, up close, far away from the object itself.
So the first few days of my commute to work I got off a station earlier and walked the gas station for no longer than 5 minutes, maybe. The darkness of the early-year mornings helped, I guess. In hindsight, the darkness lets you see shapes more clearly, because all the distraction in the background is sucked up in the dark.
So, to sum up – this might be my first insight into starting a project: to be deliberate about starting it. And finding one key element or detail that you start photographing your object. I say object a lot, because this is not only true for architecture but for all photographic subjects.
In the next post I will go into how and when you have to stop being deliberate and just „go with the flow“….