I heard this word used once by Australian photographer Yervant. He grazed over it during a WPPI class where I was his student. In my opinion, Yervant is a master of timeless portrait photography and has a grasp available of available light photography with a teaching style I can easily related to. Yervant inspires me. MY intent when using inspirey was clear, but curiosity sent me to the internet for a definition.
Inspired by visuals; photographs, paintings, video creations, graphic art, a piece of art stirs interest and imagination for the creative process. I’m intrigued and it drives me to study what I enjoy about it.
Something inspirey makes me want to take action; not just think about the creative process. I’m driven to create the Kim version. Inspirey stays with me. Visual inspirey creeps into my mind as I look through the viewfinder. What might Vivian Maier do to photograph those people unseen? How would Edward Steichen cause this image to come alive in the darkroom?
The Fabulous Fox, side wall stairs
While on an Ivy Tech field trip to St. Louis, I photographed these stairs on the side of The Fabulous Fox building. The purpose of our field trip was visiting art museums and galleries.
Edward Steichen’s “The Flatiron” caught my eye while viewing photos in the International Photography Hall of Fame and Museum (http://www.iphf.org/). In an instant, I understood the charm of a green toned print.
Unfortunately the web can’t show what I saw viewing the photograph in person. Muted green tint and street lamps glowing a warm yet dim yellow. I was inspired. I get it! After all these years of seeing green toner for sale and a green filter option when processing B/W in the computer, I witnessed the proper use of green toning by master photographer Edward Steichen.
Vivian Maier is a famous street photographer. I love that she photographed women with their shopping bags. No upper body. Just bags, torso, and legs. Those photographs depict a time for women that’s long gone. I’m reminded of the discomfort of wearing dresses with a half slip (that always slipped) and sagging ankle socks. As I child I thought that women judged each other so fiercely that they wouldn’t dare shop without being dressed for the occasion. Any occasion. We got dressed up to go to the doctor, go to church, any school event; my neighbor’s mom even ironed her children’s pajamas. She said was in case they had to go to the hospital in the middle of the night.
Vivian Maier’s photography brings to mind the days of Saturday shopping downtown, which included the weekly beauty shop visit. The smell of a perm while I waited for my mom to finish her turn in the “beauty seat”, is fresh in my mind.
I was witness to the changes in how mid-century women carried themselves. As a teenager in the 70’s, some of our wardrobes consisted of boys Levi’s and a t-shirt’s with no bra under. (Levi’s were only made for boys and men. My mom was so sweet to sew a V shape seam in the back so they would form to our waistline).
We saw our mothers fussing in the mirror, going to the beauty shop regularly. NOT US! We wanted to be free as a bird, as Lynyrd Skynyrd so fantastically exclaimed.
Memories stirred by photographs; I’m amazed that photographs have such power.