When I was processing the colour version of the picture below I suddenly realised that it was in the style of Huger Foote, a photographer whose book, "My Friend from Memphis", I had studied some eight years ago. At that time I tried to experiment with his style to use as a point of departure for some colour photography but found that I just couldn't shoot anything in his style, which seemed almost impossible to imitate because the composition was so "natural", without any apparent stylisation — in a way his photographs could be seen as "pictures of nothing", going beyond the "snapshot aesthetic" of William Eggleston, his older friend.
I don't know that much about Huger Foote, but admire his work. The son of Shelby Foote, the American Civil War historian, he has shot for Vogue and also done some film work. When his book was published he had an exhibition at Hamiltons Gallery in London and they subsequently showed some 40x60 inch (100x150cm) prints of his at Paris Photo at the Carrousel de Louvre in, I think 2002 or 2003. The Hamilton representative there told me that Foote hadn't done much work after his book was published because he had had an accident. According to the Hamilton website, he is no longer on their roster of artists. If anyone has more recent information on him, I'd be interested in seeing it. The best illustrations of his work that I was able to find on the web is the following, but there are pictures in his book that I like much more than these:
Incidentally, Huger Foote was shooting with a Leica M6.
Coming back to the colour version of my picture, I like the composition and feel it is within the scope of Eggleston's dictum, "I am at war with the obvious" and expresses several different things, but I won't go into that because I feel that photographs must speak for themselves. I have also posted a B&W version of this picture to show that, often, colour and B&W pictures of the same subject need to be treated very differently. Also, to highlight the nature of the composition of this picture I have posted below the frame that I shot just before, of the buddha in the same room, which has a composition that is more common, deliberate and easier to do.
As I've said elsewhere, I bought the M8.2 to shoot in B&W but found that I liked the colour of this camera so much that I started to think about doing a color project. Another reason for the purchase was to start shooting some pictures with a more deliberate approach and to start some new projects that would be different from the Bangkok street photography that I was doing for my book project. With this and some other recent pictures I feel I've made a beginning this effort.
Leica M8.2 | ISO 160 | Summicron-28 | Potomac, MD
Leica M8.2 | ISO 1250 | Summicron-28
Bangkok Noir© Book Project