Bad Authenticity

May 28, 2011

No images today because they’re a very labor-intensive process; a friend who’s a Photoshop wiz cut out the index print “frame” for me so, piece by piece, I can insert whatever images I want in the squares and am still deciding what to try to render as index print and then when I do it’s 50 or so layers on one file, which is quite a few layers in one image though I think my new computer can handle it.

What’s interesting about doing this is that the index print suggests a certain kind of authenticity that would no longer exist; the format speaks to the following assumptions: 1) all of the photos were taken by the same person; 2) all of the photos were taken in a relatively small window of time; 3) all the photos were, in most cases, taken in a small geographical area and finally 4) the photos are “amateur” rather than art or pro photography.

Inserting whatever you want to make for a schizoid index print is an interesting idea, as is enlarging the print to standard photo size; I did the latter in 2004 when I didn’t know better and (at CalArts) was still shooting 35mm and getting the negatives processed at a drugstore.  I made index print scans then of my own work, and the enlargement was a startling trick, though of course me being me I lost both the digital files and the actual prints of that previous index work.  That would’ve made for a better first-year show than the one I was forced into and did badly and only had one meeting for and kept locked shut most of the time.  (I also didn’t know about having meetings because this was less than two months into my first year and I had no BFA or experience with good cameras or any clue about what I should be doing.)  And this was in 2003 so this wasn’t the How to Do Things with Men deal which was good except I shouldn’t have been allowed in a darkroom given my “yeah this is good enough, I have a headache” work ethic back then.

Anyway.  So I have a history with this idea but now digitally it’s free reign.  I can insert found photos, mix them with my work, insert text pieces, or do basically whatever as long as it’s in a 3:2 aspect ratio and horizontal.  So I’m slowly working toward something but it might be a while before I deliver the goods and in the meantime I’ll probably cough up something else along the way.


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