April 2, 2015

A Conversation Between Vincent and Pablo…As I Imagined It Took Place

Pablo:  Vinnie, how have you been?  That’s a wonderful new piece you’ve created, what do you call it?

Vincent:  I’m not sure, maybe “Big Moon in Sky” or something like that.  My friend Don suggests I call it “Starry Night.”  He wants to write a song about it!

Pablo:  A question for you; what paint did you use on this?  Is this the 3000 series?

Vincent:  No!  It’s the new 5000, I wouldn’t be caught dead using the 3000, have you seen the tonal range on those paints?  Appalling!

Pablo:  I agree, personally I wouldn’t ever purchase a painting if it used those paints.

Vincent: Agreed, what are those other painters thinking?

Pablo:  This canvas is nice, what is it?

Vincent:  It’s a new canvas, out of Germany and I like the texture on it but it’s still not exactly what I’m looking for.  I’ve been searching and searching for the right canvas and I’m just not happy with anything yet.

Pablo:  I know what you mean, I’ve been searching for years for the perfect canvas and will not rest until I do.  Hey, I’ve been noticing the perspective on this piece and it leads me to believe that you’re using a 54? easel?  Placing your canvas a little higher are you?

Vincent:  Yes but not a 54, it’s a 57 and combined with those new Hartford stools (they have a great padded cushion) I sit so much higher and really like the feeling when I’m working.  Plus, they adjust so easily.

Pablo:  Wow, I’ll have to check those out, I think Al’s apothecary is carrying them.

Vincent:  I heard a rumor that you’re trying some of those new camel hair brushes?  Tell me it isn’t so Pablo!

Pablo:  Where did you hear that?  It’s true, but I’m not telling anyone.  They are so much better than the cat hair brushes that I normally use.  Have you tried them?

Vincent:  I wouldn’t be caught dead with one of those, do you know what would happen people found out that I was using Camel hair!  I don’t have to tell the scandal…

Pablo:  I see you’re using those new frames from Friar Wilson, how do you like them?

Vincent:  Pretty good, they’re a lot cheaper so my margins go way up.  I need a little extra “ching” so that I can purchase that new satchel from Mary the Seamstress.  Have you seen it, it matches my frock and is really nice for carrying around my supplies.

Pablo:  Yes, those are nice, but not as nice as those wild colored ones made by the Maid Vivian!

Vincent:  You’re nuts, those look horrible!  You’ve a poor sense of color Pablo.

Pablo:  Me???  You’re the one stuck in the past man, get with the times!

Vincent:  Look at us, talking about paints, easels and brushes.  Does any of this really matter?  I mean, do you think photographers sit around and talk like this?  I suspect not.

Pablo:  Good point.  Maybe there’s more to painting than equipment and tools?

Vincent:  Perhaps it ought to be more about the art?


P.S. An accomplished painter friend read this post and said that this is exactly how painters act! And I thought that only we photographers were overly focused on our equipment.


13 thoughts on “A Conversation Between Vincent and Pablo…As I Imagined It Took Place

  1. This is a good example of how there are many answers to establishing a vision. Both had phenomenol results! Both were true to their personal vision.

  2. I believe all men are frustrated engineers, always looking for the magic formula. We have to do some thing. We don’t have carburetors to fiddle with any more.
    Seriously, great observation.

  3. A enjoyable and funny read but sadly so true. Our choices have become many with the advancement of technology in our lives. We can not escape dealing with the many choices offered to us in everything we buy. Photography has alway had a technology side, but with the switch to digital it has become a marketers paradise. I have photographed for over 40 years and owned several used cameras. The focus was never as much on equipment as it was in advancement of film and chemicals. The technology was simple, freeing the mind to think about the subject and not the equipment. Today I own a high end digital camera and will probably be swayed by the marketers to upgrade to the new and improved model when it comes out. The frustrating thing is that I paid a huge amount of money for a camera that I turn off most all of the auto functions and use it strictly as a manual camera as with my old film cameras. This frees me to connect with the subject and not the equipment. My message may be a little off your main point, but we are all blessed and cursed with too many choices in our lives because of technology. I grew up and lived most of my life in a “make do or do without” environment. Decision making was easy because the choices were few. Sorry for thee rant, I sound like my father, I must be getting old. or better yet, wiser.

  4. Heh, heh.
    BTW, it looks as though someone may have done some dodging & burning on those two portraits. Tsk, tsk.
    A Purist would have done SOOC.
    Heh, heh.

  5. A hockey analogy. There are two types of goalies – those that are keenly interested in the latest pads, chest protector, gloves, skates, etc. and those that are most interested in strategy, form, psychology, concentration, positioning, etc. Who do you think makes the better goalie? Of course, there are goalies all along the continuum and at the elite level they are concerned with both – equipment and capability; they want whatever equipment best insures them maximizing their ability but virtually all, I am sure, if given the choice of either great equipment or great skill would pick the latter.

  6. Nice to see/read a creative twist with you sharing your message about equipment vs vision. Enjoyed the banter! Haha!

  7. Most great artists use the finest brushes, paints and materials they can afford. It is not because they would necessarily be limited by other materials or equipment. It is because they realize that their most precious commodity is the time they have to create. Good equipment can help them make the most of that time.

  8. Thanks – I chuckled reading this, because it makes the equipment conversations seem so trivial, and puts it in perspective. I fully understand your intention Cole, it’s about finding our image intent, our photographic intent. And just use whatever tools we have handy. Enough of this equipment fixation. Thank you!

  9. Ah…but what guitar brand was played for “Starry, Starry Night” by Vinnie’s friend, Don? And what kind of strings? Was that a modern or vintage mic? Tape or digital?

  10. Well, there goes my argument to get a Bugatti Veyron. I was going to tell my wife about how I could get nice blurred effects by shooting out the window while driving though the country side at 200+ mph. Not that I could very afford a Veyron anyway.

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