Ralf: Stew, I’ve known you for quite a while now, and I noticed that you have recently developed an inclination to photography. Why’s that?
StewT: My interest in photography actually started at the age of 16 when I did a qualification in Art and Design at Preston College. Back then I had an SLR camera that was fully manual, and I predominantly did black and white photographs. Those photographs were mainly landscape based. Would you say that you have an affinity for a particular type of photography. And if so where does this root itself?
Ralf: Yes stew, that is a very handsome question indeed. Your right getting down to the nitty-gritty already. I like dirt and anything out of the ordinary. So, what I like to capture in my photos are things that look rather dirty and extraordinary in some way. And as you asked me for it´s roots…. now I am at the deep end…. it may stem from things related to my biography. Can you in some way relate to that yourself, I mean capturing things which are extraodanary? And if so, what would that be for you?
StewT: To me something extraordinary is something captured in a moment or likewise an unusual piece of architecture or some kind of unfamiliar landscape. At the moment it could be anything that stands out to my aesthetic eye, and as far as architecture is concerned it means anything that breaks with any conventional conception of architecture. As for landscape it may be anything that I have not seen before and catches my eye. What are you not familiar with in terms of photography? what I mean by this is methods or genres?
Ralf: In terms of technique there is still a lot I can learn, as I consider myself a complete amateur in photography. I am using a big and expensive piece of equipment, that still holds quite a few riddles to be discovered (Canon EOS 500D +28 -135mm lens). As for the genres I feel I want to get more into action photography. And for you, Stew, what is left to be discovered for yourself?
StewT: I am still familiarising myself with the possibilities the more complex and unusual settings my camera holds in store. Action photography as yet is something I really haven’t explored myself either, as I am still diving into portrait photography as an extension of my other portrait art work. Would you consider yourself an artist, a photographer extraordinare, or just a happy snapper?
Ralf: I consider myself an enthustiast. Well, I like capturing moments or scenary without thinking too much about it. When I look at it later on my computer screen, I sometimes think one in maybe 50 shots is worth showing to others. I then work on that image and maybe post it on facebook. After you take a good shot, how do you process it? And what software do you use?
StewT: If I am working on the picture as a pure photograph, then I use iPhoto on my Mac. And if I want to consider it an image, I then use Inkscape for images or Pages for graphics compostion such as flyers. I choose some images to include in my own website (www.stewtun.com) and now and again post them on facebook. The choice may be down to an aesthetic judgement as opposed to a simple snapshot. What images or pictures inspire you now, and in the past got you into appreciating the art of photography?
Ralf: Now and in the past it was the paintings of Peter Bruegel, and curiously enough images that I saw in street mags like the Big Issue, or the 200 different polaroid images that were found in Pearl Jam`s album “No Code” which I collected after the albums release. Have you had a certain source of inspiration?
StewT: As I have a partitular preference for portraiture, it has to be the painter Ian Hughes and the artist Sam Taylor Wood. She really revolutionised not just composition, but was the first to use a single shot 360 degree panoramic device and prints.
Thks Ralf this was a nice insight into our aesthetic tendencies.