Blog Entry

John's (ArtDodge's) Photography

Posted on: June 17, 2010 7:21 pm
Edited on: June 18, 2010 2:19 pm
Now that the academic year is over for the summer, at least for me, I've had lots of spare time on my hands. I've been spending almost all of it going through the several computers of my late brother's. What strikes me are the inordinate amount of photographs that are found in nondescript file folders and other places one would never think to look.

What I find so incredible is the eye for composition John possessed. He could see things in a scene or subject that 99% of the rest of us would or could never see and then capture that "vision" in the way that made it "talk to the observer". He had a knack for finding just the right point of view to make a simple photograph become so dramatic that the image told a complete story in and of itself.

There is no doubt that John placed himself in danger many times to get the shot he envisioned. That he survived is no small wonder. The evidence is very evident when you think about what was entailed in acquiring some of the photographs. That he had an extreme amount of patience and fortitude to capture a split second in time is also evident. That he had a considerable amount of "luck" is also apparent. Then again an experienced photographer, such as John most certainly was, makes their own luck from years of knowing what could happen next and becoming familiar with the habits and instincts of his subjects.

That wildlife was John's first passion is obvious from the thousands of images I have found to date and I'm sure there are going to be thousands more to come. John also had an interest in ruins and buildings. There are extensive amounts of photographs from all over the world: from Egypt to Peru to Italy and Burma. The same is is true, to a lesser degree, with flowers and plants. There are also what I would call, the miscelleanous images that don't fit into any of the above. Waterfalls, mountains, meadows and other scenic images.

While there are several here and there, what is curiously lacking are images of people. Unless I have yet to stumble upon them, they are few and far between. I can't help but wonder why that is and have no real answer. Maybe John just didn't spend that much time where there were people when he was photographing. When he was in a city there are a few with people in them but it seems he went out of his way to avoid shots with people unless a person was the subject of the photograpg or there was no way to avoid them in a shot.

Just seeing the small amount of images that I have thus far been able to see is mind boggling. The many years John had a camera to his eye and the amount of film that was necessary to obtain those images is just amazing.

How technically "correct" the photographs are is beyond my understanding of the "art" of photography. Suffice to say that if the image "grabs" you, it is successful, whether or not it is technically sound or correct.
Category: General

Since: Apr 16, 2010
Posted on: June 19, 2010 1:59 am

John's (ArtDodge's) Photography

I spent a considerable amount of time with an acquaintance who knows a lot about these sites you all are telling me about. It is his opinion, and several others he knows, that anyone that uploads photos, videos, etc stands the chance of having them stolen, pirated, hijacked, etc. It doesn't matter that you are selective in who you allow to view the images they can be taken and used for other purposes. I'm not prepared to risk that so will keep the images as I had originally intended. I'll put them in slide shows that can be viewed by anyone who wants them. They cannot be pulled out of the slide show or the whole show used in any other way as they are encrypted for viewing only. UTube cannot/will not accept them with the encryption I'm using.

So, I guess you all will just have to ask for them through my e-mail address I listed above. That's the only way you'll get to see them now. Sorry for any inconvenience but I'm going to be very protective of John's photos.

Since: Dec 7, 2006
Posted on: June 19, 2010 12:24 am

John's (ArtDodge's) Photography

Funny this should come up but the past year I have been forced to become a "professional" photographer.  I could say that millions of my images have been seen but it is commercial and are running in national magazines.  However, I have purchased a good camera and a couple of nice lenses and am amazed how I look at the world now.  I see now that I am surrounded by amazing things.  They are everywhere and I wish I could capture what I am feeling.

There are web sites where you can upload thousaned of photographs and share them selectively.

I would love to see them.  If you need any assistance, let me know.

Since: Nov 12, 2008
Posted on: June 19, 2010 12:22 am

John's (ArtDodge's) Photography

the longer you're with webshots, the more you can load.  It's free and I can load a couple thousand photos easy.  i get over 500 views per week and I'm not a pro.  Webshots or one of the others like photobucket would be a good choice if you want ot show John's photos.  i know I would love to see them.

Since: Jan 1, 2010
Posted on: June 18, 2010 9:26 pm

John's (ArtDodge's) Photography

upgefucht, Wow that's one heck of a lot of pictures John had amassed over the years. I see what you're saying about some of the pictures not being as dangerous to take as John would use the different lenses to make the subjects (wild animals) appear closer to him.

I am in no way a seasoned photographer but I love to look at different types of interesting, thought provoking, unique photography like in John's collection. That's a good thing you are doing by preserving them so they can be shared now and in the future.

Like Gator said there are websites out there you can load your pictures onto ..Hawks, Yoko (although Yoko hardly ever shows up) Myself and others from CBS are on facebook and the amount of pictures some of my friends on facebook have loaded are over 500 I would guess but I'm unsure of facebooks limits on the amount of pictures that can be loaded.

Graham ..SFM or BTR here on CBS.

Since: Apr 16, 2010
Posted on: June 18, 2010 3:06 pm

John's (ArtDodge's) Photography

Will investigate that possibility Gator. Thanks for the suggestion. I'm not all that familiar with all the different sites for posting this kind of thing. I stick to the academic sites for the most part and have little time for the others but will give it a look.

Since: Nov 12, 2008
Posted on: June 18, 2010 2:48 pm

John's (ArtDodge's) Photography

You might think about posting them on a webshots site or facebook page dedicated to john.  Webshots will allow about 300 photos initially and keeps rising with time.  Let us know.

Since: Apr 16, 2010
Posted on: June 18, 2010 2:41 pm

John's (ArtDodge's) Photography

I just found a photo log of places, dates, times and equipment used for many of the photos John took. It seems that he used either Nikon 35mm or Bronica 3.5X3.5 cameras with a lot of different lenses. That would explain how he managed to get some of the images that would appear to be quite dangerous to shoot. He also used several different colored background clothes for extreme close-ups of smaller subjects such as flowers and insects.

I can't help but wonder if he didn't go on any one of his trips with a specific subject matter in mind and would then take shots of opportunity while searching for a particular subject. I have no way of knowing what was on a single roll of film or how many shots of a subject he took. What little I know about the technical aspects of photography, I do know that it isn't at all unusual to take several shots at the same time to make sure one will be good.

One other thing I have noticed about the images is that they are different sizes and in many different resolutions. Some are large files while other are relatively small in size. That equates to the quality of the image as stored on the computers - some are very good while others not. I'm led to believe that the photographs and slides were scanned on different scanners and with different programs. It would also seem that different people did the scanning at times. How many of them were done by John I have no way of knowing. I don't know what happened to all of the originals but am quite sure that the amount of space necessary to store them would be quite large and maybe John just threw them away after they were scanned. Who knows?

The one thing I do know is that these images are something that should be preserved. I seriously doubt that there is another private collection like it anywhere in the world. It's just too large to comprehend right now but wouldn't be at all suprised if the total number of images didn't approach a million or so. It is difficult to imagine the time and energy expended in acquiring them, let alone the cost.

Since: Apr 16, 2010
Posted on: June 18, 2010 1:14 pm

John's (ArtDodge's) Photography

I had said earlier that I was going to create a web site for John's photos but the sheer magnitude of the photos isn't going to allow for that at this time. My "talents" for producing that kind of site is sadly lacking so I have come up with another solution.

I'm going to create some slide shows that can be emailed to any of you that would like to see them. You may respond by emailing me at:

I'm going to start them this weekend and should have a couple ready by Sunday night.

Since: Jan 1, 2010
Posted on: June 17, 2010 10:54 pm

John's (ArtDodge's) Photography

Of the wildlife pictures of John's I have, I wondered if they were all taking by John himself or if some were taking by a patient thrill seeking photographer who would risk his life and or limb to get that perfect close-up picture. Now I know the answer is that it was John and I doubt any dangerous thrill seeking was involved as he just loved to get that perfect shot and nothing else it seems. Some of those close up ones of lions, tigers, polar bears, killer whale, elephant, rhinos etc are just incredible and yes they do all tell a story if you look at them long enough and open your mind.

One of John's pictures that brings back memories for me is the Red Sky Sunset at Stonehenge one. Not that I ever saw such a beautiful sunset at stonehenge but as a child and young adult in the 60's and 70's I visited stonehenge many a time with my parents. I live and was born in the U.S. but both my parents were born in Britain and all my relatives are over there hence the reason for all the visits to the old country. I remember playing amongst the stones at Stonehenge as a child ..I bet that's not allowed anymore.

John's pictures of the race car drivers and the styles and character they portrayed, the cars they drove, the other racing persons, are pure classics and are a delight to look at and opens up a wonderful almost fantasy like world of how racing was back then.


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