26. February 2012 · Comments Off on Frame: How Facts Create Relationships · Categories: All

“Photography is about finding out what can happen in the frame. When you put four edges around some facts, you change those facts,” Garry Winogrand.

   A family portrait is a ritual filled with facts and tagged as a personal document about a shared moment. Most family portraits are organized linearly not only in height, but in age, and the willing. The photographer (holding the camera) is the protagonist and the principal actor who is responsible for making the photograph. The antagonist is No. 12, who’s refusal to participate presents an obstacle which all photographers accept as part of the business.
The photographer always has the dominion over the frame and its content. What to include, and what shall never-be-known. Like the family portrait, the frame corrals facts to show what is important for the moment and discards facts which take away from the drama, the play.

Family Picture, Field Museum, Chicago, Illinois, 1981

  I take solace in the fact that the photographer is not annoyed by his family and No.12. The protagonist enjoys a cigarette as he fumbles to work the camera controls. I, as the photographer and narrator of this grand play, both figuratively and literally work the border of my camera’s frame to reorganize those facts into a private moment of a different organization, a picture.

©Craig Carlson 2012 All Rights Reserved

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