There are many artists I admire. Mr. Michael Kenna is one of them. In fact, he’s my most favorite professional photographer.
You can check out his work at:
Mr. Kenna’s photos exude sophistication through simplicity. You sense the solitude, the etherealness, and tranquility, as if you were in the scene yourself. He accomplishes this by masterful composition, light and shadow.
As a fan of simplicity in design and minimalism in art, I’m especially drawn to “Six Sticks” (pictured above). This particular photo entices me because of how simple and yet how telling it is. It captures the essence of a calm lake, without the inclusion of shore bank, trees, or anything else other than the six floating sticks and a subtle horizon. My mind fills the gap of what’s not there.
I often wondered what was going through Mr. Kenna’s mind when he took this photo. Sometimes the creative process is even more fascinating than the end result. It never occurred to me to actually ask him. Then I realized the internet has made the world so small, everyone, my idol included, is just an email away. I sent Mr. Kenna an email, asking him for permission to use this photo on my blog, and his thought process when capturing “Six Sticks.”
Much to my surprise, he returned my email. One of the best emails I’ve ever received.
Of course you may use the image on your blog
As for what I was thinking…
Perhaps it was an attempt to reduce the complicated, noisy, colorful, cluttered, busy, fast paced world, to something calm, simple and meditative. But I rather believe interpretation should be in the mind, heart and soul of the beholder. So, perhaps it is better that you think about it yourself : )
Thank you Mr. Kenna, and internet.