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Friday, December 17, 2010

SELMA'S WINE TASTING






I apologize for putting up so many pictures if your computer takes a long time to run them up. First intent was to put up one, then 3, then 5, and by the time there were 5, I wanted everybody who was there represented in the pictures, so 6 was added. Still am missing one or two. I'm absent, but that's to the good. I got 35 pictures, most of them blurred too much, or just bad shots. My camera's clicker has a pause in it, so I push down on the button and it makes the picture when it feels like it. While people are in motion, I have to anticipate the next gesture, because that's what I'll get the picture of. I don't have a great deal of control over the blur either. Yes, of course I do, but I don't want to. I keep the camera on automatic and don't use a flash. The slow shutter speed makes blurs. I like the blurs sometimes. A lot of the time it's just a blur. Then there are the times a blur catches motion, like getting Robin Cater's hand in motion like in an Italian Futurist painting of the 1920s.
I don't like using a flash. They are disconcerting to the eyes, it's an unnatural light and the shadows are eliminated. I like shadows of facial features to define the shape of the face. I don't set out with anything in mind, just catching as well as I'm able the feeling between the people and the feeling in the place. When I take a lot of pictures, it allows for all the ones that are too blurred, or off a little bit because everything changed between the time I pushed the button and the time it took. That's ok. I like getting gestures in motion and sometimes a blur that shows the motion. I'm a believer in the aesthetics of chance. Letting the camera focus as it does, choose its own shutter speed, and especially the pause between pressing the button and the click that allows chance to change whatever it is I thought I saw in the camera, allowing it to alter what I was consciously looking at in the viewer. In a way I can't name, I like for my pictures to have an element in them free of my aesthetic eye.
Selma's wine tasting was a happy social event. All the regulars were there. We all enjoyed being there together. That seemed to be the highlight of the gathering, all the regulars there, and we all set about talking like we do when it's only 2, 3 or 4. Everyone was comfortable with each other; there was no one-upmanship going on. The atmosphere was festive. Selma was effervescent, happy everyone was there, serving everyone, individually, one bottle at a time, explaining each wine before she served it. Good cheeses, good breads, grapes, pear slices to cleanse the taste buds before each serving of wine. It was a European atmosphere in the place. All different kinds of people mixing together, friendly, lively conversation going all over the place. I even thought of attempting a video walking through the crowd overhearing different conversations and seeing if I could catch the festive spirit. I didn't think I could do it without giving it some thought first. The whole evening felt like a special moment for all concerned.
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