PD Athanas

I must have been ten, in Florida with my mother and pointing my camera at everything. Shooting mailboxes, lamp poles, dogs, pelicans, drugstores, strangers.

“You don’t even know those people. How many times have I told you: stop wasting film”.

Since then I have wasted a lot of film and now burned through innumerable amounts of data. The waste to non-waste ratio is extremely high. Pre-digital there were few circled images on my contact sheets.

I have come to realize that my favorite images (the low number in the ratio) are the ones that feel to me as if I have found them … discovered in the pile of rejects. Perhaps taken by another person (or third person). I am thinking while shooting on the street … looking for things. But maybe when I stop thinking for a 100th of a second I am a better photographer.

I love movies and maybe I am influenced by them. And like the scenes taken by a movie camera, my images are not cropped. I have made that a rule: the photograph must be captured in the camera. I do not crop or Photoshop. I like a good camera (and I have plenty of them), but I am not fetishistic about photography equipment and technology. It’s all about the image; sometimes my iPhone takes a fine a very nice photograph.

Much of my photography includes frames within frames, windows, mirrors, reflections, screens, signs, billboards and how they relate to humans. I realized that several years ago. I didn’t consciously go after those images, maybe now I do. Sometimes I try not to, but I don’t like to try too hard.

Thanks to digital photography, I can stop wasting film.