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Every Photograph Has a Story: The Photograph Itself, The Photographer’s and The Viewers’: Some of the prints available on the website include the story behind them.  For example,  “The Carnival Stopped” is from one of the “Roadside America” trips along Virginia’s eastern shore where I was regularly exiting the highway to check out the villages, sea marsh and fishing boats.  In Wachapreague, Virginia, population 230, the fishing boats were either all out at work or gone forever. I am not sure.  The docks and handling facilities appeared to be in a state of disrepair, worn out or shut down.  But there at the corner of Atlantic Rd. and Ice Plant Street, was the carnival. Not a soul to be seen.  But there it was…a carnival stopped – a place of fun and community gathering but a little eery and ghost-like.  Much like the fishing town itself.

In Henry Carroll’s new book, “Photographers on Photography, How the Masters See, Think & Shoot,”  I was struck by this quote:

“When a person looks at a photograph you’ve taken, they will always think of themselves”    Jason Fulford

Henry Carroll in is commentary notes, “right after we interpret the literal aspects of the image…we enter into a second, much personal meaning.  The second reading is informed by elements such as our memories, personal experiences, tastes and cultural backgrounds…this second reading is unpredictable and entirely outside the photographer’s control.  For Fulford, this gap between what is pictured and what it might mean is where photographs come alive”

There is an image on the website whose owner described it “art that stirs his soul.”  For yet another owner, their print has an intimate feeling, and a nostalgic tone with a sense of timelessness. It is their views that give the images meaning and excitement.

In a related story from Artsy about Keith Haring, they note,

“The quickest way to kill your art, according to Haring, is to rigidly define it. “There is no need for definition,” he wrote. “Definition can be the most dangerous, destructive tool the artist can use when he is making art for a society of individuals.” That’s not to say an artist can’t have certain concepts or themes in mind when creating an artwork. But the “artist’s ideas are not essential to the art as seen by the viewer.…The viewer does not have to be considered during the conception of the art, but should not be told, then, what to think or how to conceive it or what it means.”
This idea went hand in hand with his belief that artists should consider more than just the art world. “The viewer should be able to look at art and respond to it without wondering whether he ‘understands’ it. It does not aim to be understood! Who ‘understands’ any art?.…Nobody knows what the ultimate meaning of my work is because there is none.…It exists to be understood only as an individual response.”
 

Bringing Images to Life with Real Meaning: It is these kinds of personal reflections that turn the literal stories behind the images into your art.  That is what brings an image to life and gives it real meaning.

 

Art is very much a personal choice.  Giving art as a gift can be a very memorable and meaningful way to recognize a special someone.  Giving art to a family member, a valued friend or colleague can show how much they mean to you. It can brighten a home or apartment.  It can also be difficult to choose for someone else.

Here Come the Holidays,  Personal and Meaningful Gift Giving

As the holidays approach and we think about others, a work of art can be a unique and wonderful gift.  It is a more personal gift than a tie, sweater, gift basket or kitchenware.  

One of the most memorable gifts I ever received was art from a team I worked with.  They consulted with a friend and artist, Jennifer Dickson, and selected a work called “The Dreamer”.  To this day it hangs in my bedroom over my dresser where I see it every day.  

As a young boy, I wanted to give something special to my parents and siblings for Christmas.  I turned to art.  At that age, I was not buying original art. The gifts of art took the form of a box of Vincent van Gogh cards for Mom, an art calendar or print for Dad’s office and an art poster for my sister.  

How do you select a piece of art for someone else?  You could start by considering their design sense or thinking about things they do with their free time as a way to find some art they might like.  You could take them with you to a local gallery or engage with them in a discussion about a piece of art online to get a sense of their preferences.  For some other thoughts, here is a link to a post on Saatchi art about tips for buying art for someone who means a lot to you. 

However you go about deciding what art to buy, your buying options are plentiful: visit a local gallery or art fair; contact an artist you know; explore new artists and reach out to them on Instagram; or visit online galleries like Artsy,Artspace or SaatchiArt

Making it Personal and Easy
Giving Limited Edition Prints

If you have someone special on your list who you think might like new art, I am making it easy for you to give the gift of Limited Edition photographs. 

If you want to give art as a gift you can buy a gift certificate for a Limited Edition print for that special person and then link them to BinhammerPhotographs.com to pick the print they want. Or they can email me and I will search my archives to find a photograph they love, and deliver that memorable gift you wanted for them.

How it works: You contact me to let me know the size of print and who the gift is for.  I’ll send you an invoice and a gift certificate.  All they have to do is email me the name of the print they want and it will be shipped directly to them, with the certificate of authenticity and ownership in their name.

Book Ideas, Including Roadside America

Art books can also be a wonderful gift.  For some of the best coffee-table art books, you might want to check out these ideas.  For some of the years best photography books, The Wall Street Journal offers thoughts.   If you would prefer to give a different type of gift my Roadside America photography book is available for purchase on Blurb.  

Happy Holidays to You From the Digital Darkroom

Hope your holidays are off to a grand start.  

At this time of the year, I also hope you find some time away from the daily grind of life to  reflect and discover the beauty in our lives. 

Enjoy some special time with friends and family doing whatever it is that this special season means to you