What is this blog about? In a nutshell, it's about black and white darkroom photomontage. Every few weeks, a new image with a few words about it, kinda poetic, philosophical.
For more details - check out the archive, the first post, April 26, 2015.
If you like what you see here, go to: www.bobbennettphoto.net
I found this face carved in soft sandstone on Ocean Beach, San Francisco, some years ago. I will hope he is sleeping, dreaming, and not dead.
Which ended up in this montage image:
which then got amped up a bit:
V3 - Hand-colored
The landscape - the horizon, the two trees - is at Sunset Crater in Arizona. The ragged rocks above it - tufa at Mono Lake in Ca. The lighthouse superimposed at the top is at Pt. Bonita in the Marin headlands, just north of SF.
What does it all mean?
Perhaps dreams foster thoughts ( = the trees, which grow) ...which then beget difficulties of whatever kind (the ragged tufa rocks)... but there is light at the end of this tunnel, the lighthouse shines on.
Perhaps this is about the power of thought, mind over matter?
I don't 'think' much about the meaning of the image as i am making the print.
I wrote a statement many years ago, that stands the test of time:
"I work in a very simple, traditional darkroom - One enlarger, four trays, and a collection of hand tools made from things you can buy at any art supply, or hardware store. I think it was Robert Rauschenberg (correct me, someone/anyone, if my attribution is wrong) who said it best - "It starts by YOU telling the picture what it will be -- in the end, THE PICTURE tells you what IT will be...".
I feel like I take that approach, not through any 'great design', or dogmatic adherence, it's just the way that 'comes naturally' and that is all I am interested in.
I collect negatives by taking myself, and simple camera, to places I love - the California coast, and desert - and start walking.
I spend a lot of time with my proof sheets, and in a small room, under a dim red bulb. I'm obviously interested in things metaphysical - beyond that
......it's up to the viewer to decide what's going on. If I haven't figured them out yet, (and I haven't, not really), why should I presume to explain them to anyone else? Many of the pictures just seem to 'happen', because the individual negatives are 'looking for each other'. I'm just a chaperone, and a really loose one at that...... But those were always the best kind of parties, right?
Can't think of any better way to end this post than quote the title to a great Aerosmith song: