© Stuart Pearl 2011 - "Luminaries Watching" - Click on Image to Enlarge
What makes a good photograph? How does an image create interest? Photographers strive for impact. This is the stopping power that draws a viewer in. Hopefully the picture generates questions and some sense of wonder.
Perhaps the judge for the Butler Museum 75th National Midyear Competition considered these notions when he chose my photo to hang in this year's exhibition. Or maybe he just liked the colors. Either way I was happy to be selected for the 2011 exhibit. It runs from June 28 - August 28.
Successful images are unique in their composition. Sometimes a photographer can take a common everyday view and turn it into a mystery. Or he may crop a mundane scene in a way that displays strange or unfamiliar shapes. This is part of the challenge faced by the photographer who is always honing his craft.
Cleveland is ripe with fascinating imagery. It's just a matter of spotting visual opportunities and combining the right elements of timing, light and composition. Done creatively, the viewer will pause and reflect on what is before him.
I'm a big fan of public art. I believe a city needs these efforts to soften its rough edges and provide counterpoint to the massive concrete structures and asphalt rivers. And Cleveland is fortunate to have a number of these public art gems. I discovered this one last year at Playhouse Square near WVIZ/WCPN Ideastream. It is "Chorus Line Luminaries" by urban designer and public artist Stephen Manka. His sculpture marks the Playhouse Square RTA bus stop.
Last year while doing some volunter photography for Ideastream, Luminaries' flashing lights caught my attention. It made me pause and wonder: "Now that's really interesting... what is it doing? Is their a rythm to the lighting. Now what if I waited for a different sequence of lights and aimed my lens at this angle...."