Dr. Greg's Historical & Modern Photography
A few days ago I was commenting on the local coffee place. This place has a sign that says "Topless—Seven days a week". I've seldom found that this is true. Many times when I go by I see cars/truck etc that block any view of the barista. When I can see the barista she is not topless. BUT a few days ago one of the baristas was leaning out of the window and was topless. She had some black tape on her breast. I was horrified in that she was like a striper in a show. Later I was relating this to a female colleague (not my wife) and she put it in perspective. She said about the tape: "They made something very beautiful tawdry." And she went on to comment that "what is natural is beautiful." I have to agree that what is natural presented in the right way is always beautiful. My experience is that few breasts come with black tape on them.
How beautiful that barista could have been, but how tawdry she was.
Sometimes it’s fun to play with image-making. Here my model and I are playing with photographing each other. I’ve learned over time that if you and your model can trust each other enough to relax and play the images are much better.
"Everything that gives birth is female. When men begin to understand the relationship of the universe as women have always known, the world will begin to change for the better".
Lorainne Canoe (Mowhawk) 1993. From Edward S. Curtis, The Women edited by Christopher Cardozo.
This is a quote from a native American. When I first read it I realized that one of the reasons I like to create narrative in photographs by using images of women is because I'm very aware of how different the world might be if humans could widen their view of what it is to be a human. I, as a male, am there in the choices made to create the image. But narrative requires dialogue, and dialogue, to be true, requires openness to an other. I need her image to complete the dialogue.
This is true if both women and men broadened their view of how complete human nature might be.
A lake is the landscape's most beautiful and expressive feature. It is earth's eye; looking into which the beholder measures the depth of his own nature. ~Henry David Thoreau.
When we look into a lake do we see our own human nature? Are we even capable of setting aside the Narcissistic nature of our time? Can we see the beauty of human nature or only the commercial clothing that obscures our selves?