I am so grateful to those of you who have been accompanying me throughout my photographic journey. I know it is not an easy endeavour to stick with a photographer who started with landscape, only to shoot travel, street, creative street, then travel and now… I guess this is it. In addition, many of you enjoyed my trademark deep shadows and blacks but recently… I‘ve been shooting less and less of it. I guess part of the reason was that many photographers have embraced this aggressive style and they are doing it really, really well so it was time for me to move on. The other reason might be my relentless search for new seeing.
That brings me to where I am today. Such visual shifts are in no way clearly marked on the fridge calendar. Rather, they sneak up on you without any warning. There is no question that this mutation in my seeing has been happening for a while.
First, it showed up as I became weary of my usual subjects and the way I see them and frame them. Despite successful imagery, every image came with an internal warning “seen this – done that.” Over the course of the last few months this early warning system has been echoing more and more loudly in my head.
Second, the urge for new visual discoveries, outside the boundaries of traditional street photography, was overwhelming my senses, pushing me away from my traditional visual settings.
Third, some recent outside influences, which don’t happen often, provided a much-needed reinforcement of my visual shift. Among others, the work of Ned Pratt propelled the change.
Fourth, this new direction fits perfectly into my recent method of slow, deliberate and thoughtful shooting.
Fifth, my urge to take my printing to another level sealed the deal.
While you’re reading this you may wonder, “What the hell Olaf are you talking about?” I don’t blame you. This is the best I can write at the moment as not everything is as clear as I would like it to be, nor will it ever be. It is just happening, simple as that. I have to admit that my countless conversations with Tomasz of Fujilove are helping as we both opened up about our own seeing to the point that we can question each other’s photography without the usual social constraints.
So, my photographic friend, thank you again for sticking around. It means a lot. I will continue sharing my journey with you here, as well as on my resurrected YouTube channel. If you haven’t subscribed yet, please make sure to do so.
Here are some images from my latest project with the working title, “The Scraps,” all taken with the GFX50S and the GF45-100 F4 OIS lens. One note about the gear—I really enjoy this zoom lens. Look for my review of this lens in the Medium Format Magazine later this month.
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