Portrait Stories on 8×10 Film by the Muse’s Design

Sometimes I just feel like the writer taking dictation from the muse. As a portrait photographer making portraits of people I meet in public, I think of all the people I’ve photographed, and how little control I have over who I meet, who I approach, who says yes, who says no, who becomes a part of the project.

This is an 8×10 portrait out at the local lake of a couple guys walking past my red bellows circus tent-sized camera who were intrigued, stopped to chat for a minute and ended up agreeing to pose for a portrait. Ok, two–the film holder fits two sheets, and I expose two of everyone as it gives me one to choose in the edit.

But who will I meet tomorrow? Who will the muse send out to cross my path before she sends me out to meet them? What connection will there be? No telling until I go. It’s a constant watch and wonder. But every time, I end up meeting someone and making some photographs.

Imagine if I went out every day, morning and evening. What would be made as a result of just showing up constantly, consistently. The work happens by making the work. By showing up.

The world is constantly changing. The people who choose to go out right this moment, who will end up in front of me, they’re always different.

It’s a wonderful thing to wonder. The answer will come today. And tomorrow. And the day after that.

If i show up to make photographs.

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