It’s late January, so according to my personal Viewfinders tradition, it’s time for me to share images made in high summer. I’m always running months behind in getting my film developed, and I excuse the perpetual slack in my system with the thought that maybe some people need visions of sizzling heat more when it’s sub-zero than they do when it’s balmy outside.
It was so hot during this summer vacation at the Jersey Shore that I felt the heat and light were substantive, and I used some vintage filters that I was just beginning to get familiar with to try to feature the heat, the light and the haze as tangibles.
Since I had little idea what my results would produce, I often took a few shots of the same scene, straight up, with the filter, and occasionally with the filter dailed up to 11 (i.e. more of the distorting filter to less sharp focus in the frame).
While I sense the memory of the blinding sun when I view these images, it’s impossible for me to separate the image from the making of the image. I do think the filters helped me hold and catch the heat and light, but there’s a dreamlike element to these photographs that surprised me. Initially I found it overwhelming; however, after time and with a bit of distance, I find myself favoring dream to reality.
Keep your eyes wide open.