Perhaps you thought that is only a part of New York City, but it is everywhere. You don´t believe me? I will show you. This is an exercise I did in art school, but I also did it not so long ago. Back then it was in b/w but now it is in color. I didn´t go far to get all the letters. It is great fun and you can do it in many different ways. Like every season. In sunny or cloudy weather.
I made it in English and stopped short of Å, Ä and Ö, but I found them too. A good exercise on your next stroll in the city. Wherever you are. This is Stockholm.
It started in 1998. I had met Peter Schäublin at a Sinar workshop in Schaffhaussen, Switzerland. At the time he worked at the company as head of prints, brochures etc. We became friends and started to share ideas. We came up with the idea of a calendar and made the first one in 1998, together with the local Swiss printer Stamm. We kept it up until 2019, with only two years that we missed. Time and economics change so it is no more. It was a dear challenge to me to come up with new ideas for images every year. The very first images were produced with my Dicomed Digital 4×5″ scanner camera.
Peter, a very talented photographer and graphic designer, developed a design that complimented my images. Over the years it became more and more playful.
Here is a small selection of images. I used flowers, toys, food, used gloves, vegetables, old tools, ice, instruments, spoons, watches etc. for props. It is all very much “Pelle Style”.
A good and eternal question. A very talented artist, Ernst Billgren, has written two books about it. A great, funny and interesting read. In one of the articles he writes “that many things can maybe be considered art, but perhaps not a wrench”. Note! He does NOT say that it isn´t art, and that is about the wrench itself. How, if you use a wrench in your art? Then perhaps the wrench becomes art. Or part of.
I realise that over the years I have photographed many wrenches in many different ways. Art or not, that was nothing that I have ever given a thought. Here is a small selection of images, and perhaps I can produce an exhibition with just wrenches in the near future.
My father had a garage and that was where I grew up around cars, tractors, lorries and lots of tools. I did not become a mechanics like my father and brother but I have always kept en interest in and love to, especially, old tools. I have also taken care of the tools after my father in law. They often becomes items in my photographed still lifes. I am sure my background has something to do with this.
More tool and wrench art is to come.
If it becomes an exhibition I will be happy to write to Ernst Billgren about it…😉 Pelle
Recently I had the above image from Paris accepted by yourdailyphotograph.com. All very well and I feel really happy about it. However, I always do series. It is very rare that I just do one photograph of a subject or composition when I am walking the streets with a camera . Same thing here in Paris with The Eiffel Tower. Below I present the other photographs from the series. Photographed through a curtain while I had a cup of coffee with my friend and colleague Ilian. Now I like the other two images just as much. How about you? What is your opinion? Should I have sent one of the other images? It was a good day for photographing in Paris, and now I would just love to go there soon again for more photography and culture. Wine and coffee.
I promised to show more Polaroids, and here is another selection.
You could also lift the emulsion from the Polaroid and transfer that to another material. Like here. It was tricky, using warm water and soft brushes. You had to be VERY careful not to destroy the emulsion because it is so very thin.
I became a digital photographer very early. It was not planned, but circumstances had it that way. I never regret that, but I sometimes miss the analog days. Like when I see these images. These are all 8×10″ made with my Sinar camera and lots of patience.
Polaroid used to be a material photographers used to secure the exposure, but it also gave us an opportunity to use it more artistically.
It came in 3 1/4×4 1/4″, 4×5″ and 8×10″ size. But also in 20×24″ built for very special Polaroid cameras. I used Polaroids frequently and also made Polaroid transfers. The image was then transferred on to other papers, films etc. I held workshops at Photokina in Cologne and various other places to show how to do.
My images with the 20×24″ camera were made in Stockholm using one of the very few Polaroid cameras that were traveling the world. It never went anywhere without an assistant. To be prepared for the event I made my sketches in 8×10″ on my studio floor. However, the Polaroid camera was huge and I had to nail and glue all my still lifes on a board leaning it to a wall. I just couldn´t tilt it as much as my 8×10″ camera. When you see the camera you will understand. I think the transfers I made with this camera are rare.
That was many years ago, but I still remember it like it was yesterday. During a day I made a total of 4 images. The image above with a selection of postcards after my grandmother. Original image size 20×24″ is 52×62 cm!
I will be back to show some more Polaroid images in other formats and styles that I made.
Polaroid also produced the SX-70 camera, but that is another story.
In my aim to get this blog up and running again I have decided to start with this image. A well known landmark from New York. The Empire State Building. During frequent visits many years ago that was my main subject for my photography. This is one of the images I like the most. It was not made in an ordinary way, let me tell you. It is no secret. I tripped my small camera, a Minox 35, on my foot. Like this illustration below. It was late afternoon and I needed to steady my camera. People passing by was looking at me wondering what I was doing, though this was NY. Nothing surprises. This was the result from four exposures, I think. I think I could not have made it better aiming with my hands and eyes. Or, what do you think? Without metadata on my film I think it was during the late 70´ or early 80´s.