Kokoro - Wandering Through a Photographic Life

Backstage Kokoro

A "behind-the-scenes" look at selected images in my Kokoro project —
Content, photographic notes, EXIF data, creative process, miscellaneous commentary, and original digital captures. And now with additional audio comments about selected images!

From Kokoro #025 - The Source

This installment of Kokoro is a perfect example of why I lean away from the "greatest hits" kind of photography. This image — at least to my eye — is wonderful. It would qualify as the "greatest hit" of the group, IMHO. But separated from the context of the rest of the images and the narrative, I believe it would suffer. Just imagine seeing this as an isolated image in a mat and frame on a gallery wall. It might work alright, but would leave so much untold. Its role in the narrative as I use it makes it an even stronger image.

Not that it shouldn't be on the wall, mind you! Lots of so-called greatest hits images that we see on the wall started out as components contributing to a narrative; only later do they rise to "greatest hit" status afterward, helped along by critics, commentators, publishers, etc. as well as the public. Think of Tomoko Uemura in Her Bath by W. Eugene Smith, for example. It's a great, great photograph, but began its existence as just one of many images in Smith's project.

I'm not against the greatest hits image per se, but I don't purposely set out to make them. Rather, I strive to include the best I can produce with every image in every project. Their fate as a "greatest hits" image is then out of my hands — which leaves me free to do my work and let go, trusting to the fates to do with my work what it will. Artists are not king-makers, but should just do their work and let the chips fall where they may.

Original digital capture (downsized for the web)

1/100 sec at f / 9.0, ISO 100, Panasonic DMC-G2, LUMIX G VARIO 14-45/F3.5-5.6, 21 mm

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