It has been a while since I last posted here and it may seem that I haven’t been doing anything. The truth is that I’ve been doing behind the scenes research and studying, some of which I have been sharing on Tumblr. There is a huge resource around us, once you start looking in the right places.
There has been one big question that keeps popping up during this work. And the question? What is aesthetically pleasing?
For a photographer one of the fundamental aspects of the job is to capture what works and know what doesn’t. When you try to analyse this, it comes down to how do you know whether X is more aesthetically pleasing than Y? Is it something that is hard-wired into our brains? Or is it a cultural thing, in that the world around us shapes that view?
In that quest for knowledge, I was watching the Disney Pixar film Cars 2 in which the character Mater, who is a rusting old tow truck, doesn’t want to get the knocks and dents on him fixed. Each one had a special memory for him which he wanted to keep. What people may miss is that the Holley Shiftwell character later on in the film also decides to keep a dent in her body as a treasured memory.
So does aesthetically pleasing really need to equate to perfection? Are the knocks and dents in each of us so unique that they make us who we are? Each knock or dent with their own story.
To that end, I purchased a secondhand 105mm f2.8 VR Micro-Nikkor lens from London Camera Exchange for getting some close up images and to see where this line of thinking goes.