I’ve been obsessed with old photographs for as long as I can remember. As soon as I saw them at one of our old haunts in Half Moon Bay, a suitcase in an antiques shop full to the brim with “Instant Relatives” I was hooked.
I used them in a zine, and more recently in my painting. All of these photographs are of strangers, but I don’t buy them indiscriminately. I will go through boxes, baskets, and bowls of photographs only taking a handful.
I pick out each one because I fall in love with them. And in many of my pieces I’ve invited people from different photographs who seem to suit each other into the same space-the world of the canvas.
I don’t know what my look as a painter is, as I am still largely experimenting with color, composition, and even brush strokes. But just as I think my chaotic swirls and vivid colors reoccur for a reason so I suspect these people, my people are here to stay.
I think it is worth noting that these lovely people (above) are Buck, Myrtle, and Shirley.
None of these next folks had names on the back of their photos, but I had fun placing them where I did so that as an additional feature, this painting can be rotated daily for fun.
The name of the piece comes from this beauty, who is the only one in the photograph (taken in a graveyard) to turn around and catch the photographer in the act in just the right moment.
These amorous love birds were in the middle of a group, not that it mattered to them any. They didn’t pay me any mind when I plucked them out either.
And this guy, well he’s just that classic guy, on vacation, standing on a bridge somewhere (Seattle or Italy), pleased as punch to be trying out his new technology-the camera which he is pressing the button for to snap himself in time.
I reused an old canvas that already had nails from an earlier incarnation, and so I threaded some geometric shapes into this one. The way that I tied them formed an organic, more dynamic connection between these two who are from completely different photographs, and yet are very alike. My fellow artist and friend J-Todd came up with an old fashioned dating narrative for them when he looked at the piece, and thus I titled it as I did.