As a break from processing my small mountain of rolls of exposed film, I've been working with Stuart Keegan on printing some recent work. Yes, I really do still take pictures!
The ritual of film processing > contact sheets > first edit > work prints > final edit > finished prints is a long journey from the moment of making the initial exposure. I've irreverently compared it to a pregnancy as some of these "new" photographs were taken over 9 months ago.
I don't religiously document the precise date and location of my pictures, no EXIF data for me I'm afraid, let alone a more intimate account of what attracted me to take them. Consequently when I selected these new pictures to be brought back kicking and screaming into the world it was, at the risk of over-extending this metaphor (not something I could ever be accused of, naturally), on the basis of their ability to stand up on their own two feet. Inevitably this judgement is still subjective - hey, this is art after all - but I approach them with a degree of detachment comparable to anyone looking at them for the first time. I don't expect to change people's opinion of them once the title or "story behind them" is revealed. In that way I suppose the story is thrown back to the viewer to make up for themselves.
It would be fun to record those stories in some way. This idea seems to lend itself most naturally to online sharing such as Flickr. However I'm not thinking of simply an instant comment on a website - although that might be nice - but something more considered. I'm thinking out loud here (I wonder how that translates into Korean or Chinese?) but perhaps I should investigate the collaboration approach that Blurb offers. I'll look for some examples and let you know.
Thanks for listening.