To be or not to be…

The title of this entry reflects the process I went through with this image a while ago. Basically, it was a favorite image of mine since I took it, some years ago, on a late summer afternoon visiting Gavà beach, near Barcelona.

It was in fact the same exact place (heck it was almost the same exact spot!) where my Off Season project was born, last September, some 4 or 5 years later.

My dilemma was, basically, the following: Is it ‘right’ to use an older, single, standalone image, (which as in this case was just taken for pure fun, and meant for no project at all) on a later specific and ‘delimited’ photographic project if you feel it suits the idea you had in mind and the mood of the project itself ?

The answer came in the shape of some comments about this same photo on flickr (thanks sparadrap!), so now this photo is part of the Off Season project. A part I’m quite proud of, I must say !

I’m sometimes still curious about what others think about that dilemma though…

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6 thoughts on “To be or not to be…

  1. I don’t think there’s really a dilemma… You don’t really know where the project started until it’s finished, and even then; when is it finished?!

    As you explore it in the present you will find other roots in the past.

    And even if this weren’t true, this particular photo is too beautiful to leave out!

  2. Tom, thanks for your words !

    Interesting thoughts. So far, to know when something is definitely finished has been quite a challenge. Unless the project relies on being on a specific location for a limited time, I usually find it difficult to know when it has come ‘full circle’.

    It could also be that without realizing it, I’m still missing something and I only know for sure when I got it.

    This sentence, however: “As you explore it in the present you will find other roots in the past” has left me wondering…

    Thanks for such thought provoking comments, and btw, happy new year!

  3. Más allá de tus conflictos “éticos” sobre el uso o no esta fotografía, a mi me parece deliciosamente encantadora por su pura “imperfección”.
    De lo demás sólo tú decides lo que es correcto o no…
    Saludos

  4. Hola Enrique,
    creo que más que conflictos son ‘indecisiones’ y quizás un cierto miedo a que se destape la caja de pandora y por cada nuevo proyecto o idea uno pase más tiempo buscando fotos antiguas que intentando explorar las que el mundo ofrece…

    Sin embargo creo que tienes razón, lo que sea sea, si sirve para lo que uno quiere.

    Muchas gracias por pasarte por aquí y comentar, realmente aprecio mucho tus palabras.

    Oscar

  5. The photo (the Lubitel one) is a definite favourite. But I would
    like to comment on the question put to “us” here. I don’t think
    it is a good choice to include it in your “Off Season”
    set. (That’s an opinion not a fact).

    To me it seems very hard to maintain a mood, style,
    concept that spans a set of photos. It is still hard but
    it is easier if you keep to one camera, one lens and one
    film type, one place in geography and one short interval
    in real time. Changing only one of those factors makes
    it much harder.

    A very good photographer can establish a character
    or signum that is present in every photo. I have only found
    one flickr user who does that while spanning film/digtal,
    135/120 and b&w/colour, time and place.

    Do you have any sucha candidates?

    I am unusually bad at establishing anything like it myself.

  6. Heinz my friend, thanks a lot for stopping by and commenting on this specific post.

    I can clearly see your point, since in fact, I was having the same fears and doubts, and in some way still have them.

    What I was (am?) fearing is the opening of the Pandora box, which in this case, takes the shape of looking back to existing work up to a point where one no longer considers doing new one.

    In fact probably there’s no certainty that someday you’ll just find yourself void for new ideas, but then…

    1. Do you think that you’re in a point where you’re never (and I mean never) going to have another idea ?

    2. Looking back at your ideas and paths you’ve followed, do you think that they all (and I mean each and every) have been dead paths leading to absolutely nothing ?

    Most probably your answer to both questions is no. Otherwise you wouldn’t be doing photography in first place 🙂

    In this case, you mention:
    “To me it seems very hard to maintain a mood, style, concept that spans a set of photos. It is still hard but it is easier if you keep to one camera, one lens and one film type, one place in geography and one short interval
    in real time. Changing only one of those factors makes it much harder.”

    For real, the only ‘rule’ I jumped over on this picture is the last one, since the type of camera, chosen medium (B&W), composition format, and even geographic place is the same.

    Trust me, it was a thought decision to fit this one, BUT I must say that now I’m happy I did it. It’s strange but as you say in one flickr post, things have come full circle, and this image, after getting into the project has developed a very important role, making me realize more clearly of the concept behind all the project, and also being a very important part of the project success beyond just personal work 🙂

    Man, what a piece of boring text I’ve written 😀

    “Do you have any sucha candidates?”

    In fact, there are several 😉

    Again, many thanks for sharing your thoughts.

    Oscar

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