An Introduction: Deep See Photography

Camera Work ©. Knut Skjærven.

Camera Work ©. Knut Skjærven.

There is always something else. Looking at a photograph, looking at any photograph, what your eyes are fixed at at any moment are only part of the message. Most of it hides under the surface. In the deep see.

A photograph is a momentary halt in a stream of impressions. Some coming from the outside. Others brought forward by a mind and a mindset.  Mixed in an all inclusive consciousness.

Photographs contain a past, a present, and a future. This is the extended vision that is always there but has largely been forgotten. In Street Photographer’s Toolbox we will label it Deep See Photography. As an area to encircle.

It is a way to understand photography, it is a way to talk about photography, it is an aesthetics and a way to take pictures. Street photography, as the visual stories of historic and contemporary unstaged, public life, is the scene for it.

Clever people have taught us that photography is all about revisiting the world. Have a look at the world as it once was. The old steets of Paris, the underground of New York, the wars on foreign shores. And sure, those impressions are part of the story. But not the whole story.

In the western world we tend to cut things apart.  To look more closely, to investigate what is there. On the table, cutting sharp. Maybe that is the overall challenge in our centuries of success? What we have forgotten is to put the pieces back together again. Maybe that is the overall challenge of our time?

In photography you could say that what you see is what you get. It is half way correct. The other half is buried in deep see.

The interesting question is what deep see street photography looks like? Is there a special aesthetics to go with it? Is it way to take pictures? Will we discover deep see aesthetics in the best of pictures?

Questions to be an answered.

Deep see is a way of looking at things. It is a way of thinking. An approach.

But, the internet is not for long essays. But it could be a medium for selected storter stories. Like chapters in a book, like tools in a box. They reside there till you put them to use.

So that is what this Deep See Photography will address. Posts piece by piece, or rather moment by moment. Like the pieces of a puzzle.

Stay tuned to the section: Deep See Photography. Pick it up in the links section.. This is the very first post. It is there already.

Good luck with it. Have a very good day this Monday with, eh, sunshine, actually.

January 21, 2013.© Knut Skjærven. All rights reserved.

NB! Posts in this section will be inspired by phenomenology.


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  1. #1 by Tony Cearns on January 23, 2013 - 9:33 pm

    As Phillip Greenspun once said ..”the best thing about street photography is that it is possible for the viewer to see more than the original photographer – – Over time and with practice our perception increases. In particular there is a temporal dimension, as well as the obvious spatial one, as events unfold in time. Thanks for the post Knut.

    • #2 by Knut Skjaerven on February 13, 2013 - 1:37 pm

      You are more than welcome. I read this a long time ago, but some reason did not comment. Sorry about that.

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