Often I have ideas for images that require me to look beyond the boundaries, the literal boundaries, and edges of a single photograph. These photographic constructions are my attempts to take a single image and use it to build a larger narrative. For most of these pieces I’ve used Polaroid cameras and SX70 prints. I chose them because of the immediacy of image production. Since I did not have access to a darkroom for several years after leaving graduate school, these cameras gave me a means to make finished prints without one.
Even though today we can view an image immediately on our phones and digital cameras, we can’t easily hold a tangible print within seconds of taking the picture. Using Polaroid material I could hold this object and immediately begin the associative thinking that would lead me into a larger reality. Additionally, I liked the larger bottom margin of these unique little prints as they provided a place to take notes if it seemed appropriate. Eventually those notes evolved into stories.
Combining a photograph with other media and objects creates a larger, less descriptive reality. A dialogue develops between what each photograph says by itself and what it says in a combined object, between what it was and what it’s become. I think it is this attempt, this process of relating single photographic images to something larger, and the resultant tension, humor, and beauty that fascinates me.
Recently Polaroid media has made a comeback after being gone for decades. I’m encouraged to revisit this process and see what comes of it.