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Thread: Gregory Crewdson's 'An Eclipse of Moths'

  1. #11

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    Re: Gregory Crewdson's 'An Eclipse of Moths'

    I guess that most of you who are familiar with Crewdson's work know that it's highly staged and lit. The behind the scenes photos at the first link Randy posted show a few examples, such as (if this direct link works) image #3, https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/gr...n=true#image=3

    I think the lighting of the foreground produces an image with some similarities to recent HDR trends, but his work has always had elements of this, even before HDR was a fad. He might be doing both digital capture and shooting 8x10s - by the time you're using two lifts and spraying down the entire parking lot, what's adding a second camera?

  2. #12

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    Re: Gregory Crewdson's 'An Eclipse of Moths'

    Quote Originally Posted by Maris Rusis View Post
    From the Gargosian Shop link offered by Tin Can it seems that Gregory Crewdson sells pictures described as "Digital Pigment Print"; essentially pixel dust sprinkled on paper. But yes, it is possible that photographic materials, maybe even 8x10 chromes, are consumed and discarded on the way to the final product.
    Here we go again (every image produced in the darkroom, especially the ones that were exposed on "expired" film, with no help from exponometer, developed in ages-old chemicals , mixed with a recipe that was kept as a secret in the family for generations, projected onto expired paper, are masterpieces by definition)



    In the past he was photographing on Portra in 8x10 and printing digitally indeed. Dont see why he would abandon the established workflow. And no, I would not judge the quality of his current work based on some tiny (and likely over-edited) images in that article.
    But does it really matter?
    One either "gets" what they see in the pictures or don't...

  3. #13
    Christopher Barrett's Avatar
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    Re: Gregory Crewdson's 'An Eclipse of Moths'

    I have a couple of Crewdson's books. I love his work, but I think it kind of misses. If you've ever seen the documentary or behind the scenes images, there is an amazing amount of craft that goes into making his photographs... he just hires all of it. Also, yeah... those images linked look awful. His work is usually gorgeous.

  4. #14
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: Gregory Crewdson's 'An Eclipse of Moths'

    More like an isolated frame cinematographer, turning the outdoors itself into a heavily controlled studio in order to tell a semi-fictional story. Not to my taste, that is, as an orchestrated production rather than as discovered direct content. But he's honest and articulate acknowledging that discrepancy, and comes up with interesting story-telling images, and seems like a very interesting person behind it all. It would be informative to see what he could do (or couldn't do) as a single individual confined to a more ordinary budget and settling on a single press of the shutter per image. To each his own, I suppose. Neither fish nor fowl, neither a painter nor photographer. Maybe a slow-motion big-capture cinematographer. That's fine, but kinda misses the whole point of photography in certain ways. He's now given up on 8x10 anyway.
    Last edited by Drew Wiley; 1-Oct-2020 at 14:23.

  5. #15
    jp's Avatar
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    Re: Gregory Crewdson's 'An Eclipse of Moths'

    Appreciation for craft is part of enjoying the process of large format film photography. But, for me, it does not extend to enjoying or appreciating Crewdson's work or anyone else who is perhaps more famous for the effort than the actual images. I'm personally more impressed when someone can shoot a roll (or box) with quiet efficiency and look effortless doing it, then go home and then have awesome photo after awesome photo to show for it when other people going the same activities don't find the awesome photos. Whether it has financial or academic value is of no importance to me.

    Digital Pigment Prints, or pixel dust, or inkjet, or giclee, or whatever you want to call it is a photographic material in that it's used for making photos, even if it's not a light sensitive product. It works better because it's not a light sensitive product. Sort of like how carbon or selenium toner is not a light sensitive product.

  6. #16
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: Gregory Crewdson's 'An Eclipse of Moths'

    Big stitched, stacked-focus inkjet images just don't have the same impact on me as on the general public at the moment, most of whom have never seen a precise large darkroom color print to begin with, which can even excel in detail. But big for sake of big is the current fad, as well as idolizing the latest digital whatever. I'm frankly way more impressed by how Meyerowitz could choose a place like Cape Cod and lug around an 8x10 by himself, or how Stephen Shore could give an intimate impression of small town life, likening 8x10 color photography to the art of fly fishing with just the right amount of tension on the line, than all this big budget production that Crewdson does. I don't dislike the result; but I do happen to like way way more what basic photography is capable of doing without all that extraneous nonsense.

  7. #17

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    Re: Gregory Crewdson's 'An Eclipse of Moths'

    From an interview posted on Petapixel...

    Yes. I used to have this expression, because Iíve worked with 8x 10 for so long in my life, that you live and die by the 8 x10. Itís such a limited camera, but it also has such clarity and beautiful description. Yet itís a beast ó itís cumbersome and has limited focus. I can honestly say that when I was finished with Beneath the Roses, I was finished with the 8 x 10. I donít miss it in any way, and I canít imagine ever going back to it. But that doesnít mean I regret using it. I loved it. Now I shoot with a Phase One camera, but itís set up like a view camera.

  8. #18
    (Shrek)
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    Re: Gregory Crewdson's 'An Eclipse of Moths'

    What if you could condense an entire movie into a single still image? I gather that's sort of what he's doing. I'll reserve judgment until I can see some of his work in person.

  9. #19
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Re: Gregory Crewdson's 'An Eclipse of Moths'

    exactly, and admirable even if failing to impress

    I have made a few complicated still lifes

    at least one was met with total silence, yet I like what i do



    Avant-garde




    Quote Originally Posted by Jody_S View Post
    What if you could condense an entire movie into a single still image? I gather that's sort of what he's doing. I'll reserve judgment until I can see some of his work in person.
    where is the monolith

  10. #20
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    Re: Gregory Crewdson's 'An Eclipse of Moths'

    GC’s achievement is that his work manages to evoke an emotion in the viewer most of the time.
    His best images even manage to provoke an emotion.

    His work is remarkable in that while being conceptual in nature, it gets an emotional response.

    Concept driven photography (both from amateurs and pros) while very good at provoking thoughts - rarely manages to hit on an emotional level. For example Weston’s vegetables are a great source of inspiration, and studying them has provided generations of photographers with a better understanding of the medium and the ideas it could tackle, but they don’t really work emotionally. Asking a viewer if Weston’s pepper is a happy or sad picture would be akin to a twisted rorschach test.

    With Crewdson the opposite is happening : the melancholy that several members have noted emanates from the work clouds ones rational judgement, and the technical study of the work doesn’t reveal any breakthrough. (Probably why he doesn’t get much love from a technical leaning Internet forum)
    For most audiences, this feeling is rare or completely new : a conceptual piece that aims at your guts and not your brains.
    And that to me explains the success his work has found.
    "I am a reflection photographing other reflections within a reflection. To photograph reality is to photograph nothing." Duane Michals

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