Sunday, August 12, 2007

Reality check

Lorcan Otway, left, and Bob Arihood
East Village, Manhattan

Whenever I get to feeling overconfident about my photography, I look at Lorcan Otway's portfolio and my ego is given a quick and decisive reality check. Lorcan's compositions highlight the capabilities of the human eye to portray beauty and pathos in ways that make me jealous as hell.

Similarly, Bob Arihood has an amazing ability to tell a compelling story through photographs. Sometimes it's a story of beauty. Other times it's an account of injustice and iniquity that makes you want to holler. Always, it's compelling.

I'm very fortunate to have become friends with both artists. My own work can only improve and my own horizons only broaden as a result.

They are my older, wiser brothers in photography.


Jean said...

I see you as having a slightly different sensibility and aesthetic from either, which appeals to me more, though both are certainly fine photographers. I definitely see this, but don't really have the concepts with which to describe it: a certain gentleness, lightness, fluidity, sensibility to pattern, perhaps? At no cost in uncompromising strength and impact. Perhaps it's the Japanese influence.

Michael said...

Awww, thanks, Jean. Bob and Lorcan have a fine sense of interpretation of the ordinary that transforms everyday things into the extraordinary. Their work really appeals to me, and it gives me ideas for my own compositions. They're extremely willing to share tips and tricks with me that they've accumulated over the decades.

How lucky am I?

Lorcan said...

Och... not a bit of it... Mike's work is as good as it gets!
Besides, Mike's a much nicer bloke than Bob and I rolled into one (yech) and a lot more compact to boot!

Michael said...

Thanks, Lor. You're a gem -- and a great mentor, as is Bob.

Anonymous said...

although at times I find them pedantic I do love Bob and Lorcan's photography and how much they care about our community and our characters and you feel the compassion --- I love them and their powerful important photograhy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

You photographry speaks to theirs as an equal.
Suzannah B. Troy

Michael said...

Hey SBT,

Thank you, my dear! I don't know if I would call them pedantic. They know that the mainstream media gives woefully inadequate and occasionally very inaccurate coverage of the East Village, and they provide an invaluable service by filling that gap. Some may see this as being preachy, but my opinion (for what it's worth) is that they're only taking pains to show what the mainstream media just doesn't get. If Bob and Lorcan are ever silenced or choose to pursue other photographic endeavors, the neighborhood will suffer for it.