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Springfield, Illinois
By James Hawker | FREELANCER
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Photo essay: Photography as personal vision
By James Hawker

These photographs have been culled from "Kafka's Resort," my ongoing portfolio of 250-plus film and digital photographs begun in the 1970s. I will probably never finish it.

"Kafka's Resort" represents my voice in my work, photographs that as a group tell the story of my experience of time passing - a way of seeing that I realized had been there all along and could be "the work" after studying at the Visual Studies Workshop with Nathan Lyons in the early 1990s. Others have described this way of working as "thinking photography."

It was a daunting challenge having to abandon what I had been taught about the traditional expectations of a photograph and give full consideration to this idea of my own vision, addressing my feelings of what a photograph can be: pensive, communicative, humorous - situations that require the viewer's engagement to gain insight.

So, I pose these questions to you: What do you know from looking at these photographs? What do you sense? Feel? What do you associate with them from your experiences?


Story published Friday, January 7, 2011 ( Volume 5, Number 8 )

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