Weeks of isolation yields plenty of emotion. For “creatives” it also often yields plenty of ideas.
For my son and I, it started with a conversation about starting a larger project. The idea--before the global shutdown-- was to plan in the spring and shoot in the summer. He’d travel back from Colorado and we’d embark on our first ever, “real” project together. He always has dozens of manic, half-baked shower-inspired creative ideas pinballing in his brain. It’s the part of him I love the most. I see myself in there somewhere, many moons ago, as a young artist with a handkerchief around my neck(my quasi-ascot) and a Canon F-1 on my hip.
Fast forward to the world’s current state. We were unsure of the future of the project, but very sure we still wanted to make something together. While the idea itself evolved and transformed, the urge to create remained consistent.
So, with the new landscape, we decided to try something new and collaborate from a few thousand miles apart.
It is exhilarating. It gives us the constant connection that we both crave during a time when keeping focus is difficult. For me, having at least one creative goal during the past weeks has helped me relax and feel myself the most. Turning up the Steely Dan and producing images is something that--even though I often do it daily--I’ve started to take it for granted for some time. This new approach--with all its challenges and celebrations--yields a sort of recalibration of my creative process.
Moving pictures in solitude is a brave new world for this photographer. Albeit completely different from my usual pace of seeing smiling faces in front of my still camera, I found this odd comfortability in it. There was the basis of my skill set in exposing images properly and composing a frame, but there was also that clunkiness of trying something new. Like the first time I loaded that Canon F-1 with a roll of 35mm film.
With my son’s constant urging that I should donate my beloved studio to him, we settled on an idea. We decided to make a short piece--A Portrait of a Place--to keep our creativity at bay for now. I got to be the cinematographer on this one, and he got to do everything else.
Our hope is that the larger project will happen, followed by many more larger projects as a collaborative pair. But in the meantime, what you will see is my raw emotion and his interpretation, as two artists, but also as father and son.