User:Focal Camera

From XPUB & Lens-Based wiki


To shoot

Reflections around the act of taking pictures and low-quality images

       I built a shotgun-camera. The body and the shutter are regular ones while I designed the handle of the shotgun myself. Despite the intimidating concept behind its design, it seems to me that I defused any actual provocative 'attempt of violence' with my own hands beginning with its look. In fact, only the body of the camera and the shutter are painted in black, while the handle is wooden looking. I didn't necessarily want to scare people to death while carrying it. I rather have triggered a circle of questions: What is the role I play while holding the camera? Am I a soldier? Am I a hunter? Am I a killer, an artist, a reporter? Am I just a fool? I might have been something at the crossing with all these possibilities. Ultimately: What is the camera? Is it only a transparent tool? Is it an illusions-maker-machine thanks to which we believe we have the power to stop time, grab a small piece of reality and own it forever? Is it a weapon? One thing's for sure, putting my finger on the camera's trigger detached me from the crowd. I was moving in there but I was not part of it anymore which leads me to think that no, a camera as an object is not a transparent tool though the development of its technology pushes in that direction. The lens is so long that I'm never sure where my focus is just as I don't really know what I'm taking pictures of, for I have no viewfinder I can look through.
       When I saw the results of the first try I gave to the shotgun-camera, I smiled with awe, for it was nothing that I expected. To be fair, I expected nothing at all. Building a camera from scratch is not everyday practice for me and I only used analogue twice during my previous studies with ruinous results so that I was sure that nothing would have been captured on film. But film captured something indeed: the ghosts of a city so familiar to me and unknown at the same time. Un-known, un-said, un-shown, for the lack of definition underlined once again that photographs don't only involve what's visible in the frame but also what's left out of it. Low-quality pictures seem to capture the invisible more than anything else, they seem to whisper more than shouting.

Focal Camera 1.jpg  Focal Camera 8.jpg  Focal Camera 6.jpg    1st try

000005.jpg  ISA000010.jpg  000008.jpg    2nd try