I am in deepest darkest editing. I’m working on the edit for my book Generation Pink, going through three years worth of work. Over the years I have picked up the language of photography. Now I must learn the language of the photo book. I already have a few phrases tucked up my sleeve, but I need more fluency. I have so been busy trying to get the point across, in my photographs, that the work seems to shout it out. I am in the process of cooling it down – spacing out – my ‘in your face’ busy shots, with some quieter pictures. In an effort to communicate more clearly and effectively.
I worked on this edit with two of my trusted photo book friends. The workshop I did with Akina made it clear to me that I wasn’t going to be able to edit my own work, by myself. Alex, Rudi and I spent an evening last week, making a start on it. The process is ongoing, as I live with it on my wall and work at it over the next few weeks. What becomes most apparent is the sheer amount of work that doesn’t make the final cut. From 2,143 images around 50 will be in the final book. From 223 additional research images I might use one. From the pages and pages of text in my notebooks, this will probably become 10 quotes.
And that is the beauty of making a photo book; only the best work, the images that communicate most effectively, work together to create a whole. The work is translated into a photo book and becomes greater than the sum of its parts. It’s the cream off the top and everything else gets chucked down the sink. And I am ready to be ruthless. I remember reading novels and being irritated when the author includes his/her research in the story. The research qualifies, and allows you to tell the story, but to include it dilutes the story for the reader. With this in mind I am intent to let go. There is no need to show my workings, that’s what this blog is for.