Jan 24, 2009

Richard Friedman Photography

Here's another great discovery thanks to Julie. Photo site All I've Seen is the work of Oakland, CA, based photographer Richard Friedman. Included are 24 color photos of NYC from the mid 60's through the early 70's - just beautiful work. Its very simple & straightforward shooting and a lot of fun to look at. There's a certain filmic quality of color photos from that general time period that I find enchanting. And by filmic, I mean movie film, not photograph film. Perhaps its simply the fact that these were shot on film and not digitally?

Its interesting to note (attention Jeremiah & EV) his comments concerning the shot below from 1970 in particular (looking east from 6th Ave & 8th St), returning to NYC after some time away from it: "So many things had already changed (like the Nedicks on the corner), and the next few years in NYC were very hard. Still, the 5 blocks around Eighth Street was my home. It was like leaving an old girlfriend who needed to go into rehab."

Check the rest of his photos as well from his lengthy travels. There are just as many wonderful shots from around the world - Dublin, London, France, Germany, Japan, and other cities in the US. Explore!

About his site & work: "This website is an on-going, nearly daily, personal project to display a random selection of some of my 8000+ pictures taken since I started taking pictures, which was sometime around 1964. Rather than have these images rot under my desk, I thought it would be interesting to make them available. (More about my slide collection.)

I am not a professional photographer, but some of my images have turned up in interesting places: record jackets, books, funeral memorials, even documentary films made for TV, and off-Broadway stage productions.

Some of the rules I set for myself for doing this project require that I spend no more than 10 minutes working the orignal scanned slide in Photoshop. The only adjustments I permit myself are some simple color balancing (many of the slides come out of the scanner too blue), brightness and contrast adjustments, and some sharpening. Some of the images are cropped, but most are full image.

I do not distort the images. In fact, I really dislike seeing images that are intentionally distorted for some artistic effect. I’d prefer to leave that to painting. What I want to see in a photo is a realistic image, but one that draws attention to things that otherwise might escape our view.

Of course, you will notice that many of these images were taken in Europe, or other interesting places. It seems that the times I am most actively taking pictures are when I’m on a trip or on vacation. I took my first trip to Europe (Ireland/Scotland/England, actually) in 1966. I was 22 years old, and I had a new Nikkormat camera. Being outside New York CIty and out of the US for the first time really managed to open my eyes. In the 1970’s I managed to spend two years living in working in London, and took trips to the continent and north to Scotland. And I took many pictures during that period.

I started shooting digital around 2003, and I like the immediacy of the medium, but I don’t think I’ve given up on film yet. Digital photography is very seductive .. it’s so easy to shoot, and cheaper than film. I still have my film Nikons, and plan to use them. But starting in 2007, more and more recent digital images start appearing on this blog. Now it’s a mix of past, current, and future.

If you were to ask me what interests me the most when taking pictures, I’d have to say that it seems that what I’m trying to photograph is stillness and a sense of place and position. Geometry fascinates me, and reducing a three dimensional world into a seemingly flat image is all about geometry.

Some of these pictures are, what I call, “corner of the eye” images… images you might catch out of the corner of your eye. Unexpected and momentary.

Other than that, there is no program or agenda here. I took these pictures mainly so that I could remember where I was then, and what it looked like. Years later I find myself pleasantly amused to find that some of these images are really worth looking at again and again.

It’s just that simple. Hope you enjoy them. Do leave comments."


EV Grieve said...

Thanks for posting these, KB...I look forward to digging into his photos...

rchrd said...

Isn't the internet great!

Otherwise these pictures would be rotting in boxes under my desk.

Thanks for the great interest in my photos! And do leave comments.

All I've Seen

Karate Boogaloo said...

EV - thanks for the link.

Richard - thanks for the photos! And thanks for stopping by here. I'm linked in with a whole bunch of very NY-centric blogs so there's been a lot of interest in your shots. Most of us are hopelessly nostalgic so your stuff is right up our alley. I hope we send some traffic your way. - Tim

Karate Boogaloo said...

Richard - By the way, I tried posting a comment on your site but was not able to. You may want to check it.

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