But this idea of “death before digital” doesn’t sit right with me.
Long story short… shoot a lot. Don’t limit yourself to a camera or medium. And for fucks sake stop using disposable cameras. Plastic lenses look like shit.
Jon Walker’s favourite feeling in the world is loading a new roll of film in his camera, advancing it to the first frame.
He doesn’t remember what it was like to see before he started making photographs on the street. There is a certain mindset he enters, something primal, almost like accessing the part of his brain our ancestors used to hunt. He is addicted to that sensation, keeping his eyes wide, knowing the next good photo could be just around the corner.
Jon studied drama in college and thinks about what he learned there often while he’s out photographing. We used to ask ourselves in class, “How many worlds are on stage at this moment, how many individual stories are being told in this space?” Jon thinks of a film negative as a stage, a place where a story takes place. There is something magical about the ability to tell an entire story in a tiny fraction of a second, something that is entirely unique to photography. I’ll never be able to put words to it. Garry Winogrand said in 1980, “Sometimes I feel like the world is a place I bought a ticket to. It’s a big show for me, as if it wouldn’t happen if I wasn’t there with a camera.”
Tattooing is one of the most beautiful things on earth to me and I am currently still tattooing every single day and I will most likely be tattooing for the rest of my life. However, tattooing stands in hard contrast to my photography. Tattooing is a very strict profession, there’s no mistakes allowed. In photography or at least in the way I approach photography, I’m able to do more experimental stuff. If the outcome doesn’t turn out as expected, no one gets hurt.
Although I do have to say… although it’s not that obvious, both my tattoo- and photography-work have many things in common. Especially since the last years in which my vision got more clear started to create my “voice”.
What is really interesting to me is the thing behind the beauty. I like the concept of exposed intimacy. Because it is paradoxical. How intimate can something be if everyone can look at it? I think the dialog between model and photographer is extremely important. There has to be real interest in the person or object you you make pictures of. Doesn’t matter if it’s a building, a plant or a human being. You have to be really interested in it to get the full spectrum of it’s beauty, it’s possibilities, it’s weaknesses and it’s strength. Fascination isn’t enough, there has to be real interest and passion and connection.
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