My Disney Hall Collection is a combination of opportunity meeting restraint.
It’s often said that if you’re an artist, you have to choose between having a successful career or having a successful relationship. For those of us that try our hand at having both, there’s a constant measuring of what we need to do to produce more quality work and what we need to do to maintain a healthy relationship.
Of course, we’re now in an age where everyone is distracted with the ability to talk, text, message or share photos at all times, so remaining present and actually living in the moment rather than curating and sharing it is a problem no longer unique to artists.
Because it’s so easy for me to slip into these distractions or to simply divert a majority of my attention to looking for photographic opportunities around me where ever I may be, a couple years ago I started putting a quiet cap on my cell phone use and often don’t bother pulling it out until it’s obvious that those I’m with aren’t putting there’s away.
This isn’t to point fingers, I’m nowhere near perfect.
I say this because it was with the thought that I needed to exercise restraint during a date with my wife that I had an opportunity to catch a few shots of the Disney Concert Hall–an admittedly overshot location, but one I love anyways.
We were early for a benefit jazz performance by Ramsey Lewis and had the option to step out of the hall while we waited for the ushers to open the doors for seating and, well…thankfully my wife reached into her purse for her phone.
Hah! Permission granted.
All in all, I only took about 10 photos and to save time processed them completely within my phone, but it allowed me an opportunity to both photograph a building whose architecture I love.
But wait a second, remember that part about the building being overshot?
I can’t tell you how many shots I’ve seen of this building, both from architectural photographers and those shooting flesh and blood models. The shots are freaking everywhere!
So my minimalist approach to how many photos I took was tempered with an attempt to shoot what I haven’t already seen two dozen times.
I figured that I could always delete the obvious trash if I decided two days later that what I first considered a great shot, upon reflection was reminiscent of something dog walkers aren’t supposed to leave behind after the pet takes a squat.
So with the exception of the selfie, this is two of four prints available from that collection. Taken and processed entirely on my cell phone.
I’ve been thinking in terms of abstract photography over the past couple months and these shots kind of fit into that realm for me.
They don’t feel like true architectural photography, at least not like the stuff I follow, but instead, I tried to simply capture the emotional tone of the gently sweeping metal walls.
So what happened after we were let into the theater?
Cell phones made a couple brief appearances, but the evening never felt anything less than a date.
As for the performances, Ramsey Lewis and everyone else that night tore the stage down. They were more than simply musicians, they knew how to put on a show.
For that part however, my cell phone was in pocket.