“Photography As ART” script shows how James creates his art using only light, camera, and optics, in addition to considerable logistical planning, technical experimentation, patience and dedication.
Image 31 shows the STONEWALL illusion in pans, tilts, overall.
Stonewalls are another addition especially unique to the Vineyard and all of New England landscapes. The golden age of stonewall building, mostly out of granite, for fencing, boundary lines, or an animal pound was from 1775 to 1825. The searches for a particularly beautiful sample ended with capturing this STONEWALL illusion, to which is added the petrifaction of a muse (through three hours of painting).
Image 32 shows the HANGING OUT ON THE VINEYARD illusion in pans, tilts, and overall.
The word about MV is people go there to hang out. It is a pristine and beautiful place were billboards, chain stores, and traffic lights are left behind on the mainland. Take off your shoes and let the sand between your toes. As in the photograph HANGING OUT ON THE VINEYARD notice the red pumps abandoned in the beach grass, and the last thing our muse is hanging on the line is her panties, preceded by her bra, stockings, skirt, and blouse… there she is “au natural.” She’ll fit right in with the Vineyard’s array of clothing optional beaches.
Image 33 shows the material checklist and Image 34 a sketch for HANGING OUT ON THE VINEYARD.
The materials, the lines and poles were hidden away for a year. James was awaiting puffy clouds, but he always found the Cedar Tree Neck location either overcast or cloudless. Always embracing the sun he finally went ahead and had his muse just let it all hang out under that clear blue sky.
Image 35 shows FROM SEA in pans, tilts, zooms and overall.
This two photograph set FROM SEA TO SEA was inspired by a call from a Manhattan photographer; asking James where on the Vineyard is there a nice place to shoot. To that silly question he replied “turn around and you’ll be in a nice
place,” that is to say, no matter how you look at it, from whatever direction, it’s all nice. Of course, this was figuratively expressed; viewing it literally was another matter. So how do you show the two sides of beauty at the same time? The first thing that came to mind was using a mirror that could reflect some of the beauty of a scene behind the camera, and this would include his muse.
Finding a location offering a beautiful two sided vantage point that could be photographed took a while. Finally a spot at Lambert’s Cove Beach offered a tunnel shaped dune that gave a view of an inner lagoon, while the reverse direction overlooked Vineyard Sound.
Image 36 showing mirrors and Polaroid test set-up.
He decided to use more than one single mirror to have more reflecting surfaces, and also to have them in irregular curved shapes to fit organically with the environment. This approach also offered reflections that fit in with photographer David Hockney’s thesis of how we see with our eyes never fixed and always darting around any scene.
Image 37 shows David Hockney’s MOTHER BRADFORD, Image 38 shows TO SEA in pans, tilts, zooms and overall.
With these things decided all that remained for him was to prepare the mirrors so they could be staked in the sand and take some test shots to determine the best optics, f-stop, angles, distances, and way to align the mirrors; This to keep the desired views in focus, while keeping himself and the camera out of the reflection. From there pressing the shutter button was the easy part.
THE END of Scene Six