Monday, December 25, 2006


Christmas day and I'm celebrating gifts and lessons. Ruth Bernhard died earlier this week at 101, and ironically I was given a biography about her as a gift this am: Ruth Bernhard Between Art and Life. There is a signed piece of her work in our college that the head of the program had obtained and this began my interest He had been lucky enough to meet both her and Ansel Adams when he was a student. I prefer her work and philosophy.

As I was sitting and sipping Republic of Teas "Tea of Inquiry", a green tea with roasted rice and eating Meyer Lemon Sables which I had made late last night (thanks to Molly at Orangette) I perused the chapters and found this:

"...I always aim to help people have clearer vision and thus to live more fully-the basic development of a creative person and a good photographer. We may not verbalize the most important aspects of our lives, but we often can photograph them as equivalents of our feelings. Thus creative work is born of emotional necessity. It represents the fulfillment of an artist's thoughts and feelings. Art is communion: speaking from heart to heart. The camera is only a tool for the photographer. The artist is only successful only if she can use the tools at hand to express feelings. Feeling produces identification with the subject...I try to become the subject of my camera. I seek harmony. I want to express the connection we have beyond time and beyond the body to all of nature."

As I struggle to make the transition to becoming a flaneuse photographer, these are lessons to learn indeed.

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