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August 04, 2002
Cameraless, lensless and digital.

Instead of working on my friend’s website, which I should be doing right now, or even going to Jørgen’s party, which I would like to do now, or certain other things, which I would love to do now, I am taking digital pictures of lilies.
The pictures above were taken without a “camera”. There was no lens involved. They are direct scans made with a low end flatbed scanner. The photographs created this way have a nice roughness and fragility to them.
They also have a certain flatness that can not be seen with the naked eye. Our eyes are more like cameras, a bit less like scanners. (We scan things ballistically, not in a linear way.)
Pictures of flowers have been taken this way probably since there have been photocopiers. (Scanner unit with attached printer unit.) It might be difficult to point a photocopier onto something though.
I used this method for a cover for LatinXPress (1997) (The one and only Kai Pham did the design on this one.) and Harold Feinstein took some exceptional images of One Hundred Flowers and later Foliage, using exactly the same method. (Though it is not mentioned in the book I have here.) The method can be used to create extraordinary images when used in the right way, and Feinstein’s books show us quite spectacular results. One Hundred Flowers might be one of the best coffee table books out there.
On the other end of the spectrum of possibilities there is always Cat-Scan.Com. And where people scan cats, they also scan other things and of course parts of themselves...(and yes, there is a special site for that too, with instructions and all, but I am not linking to it, go, find it by yourself if you need to.)
But this is not what this is about, of course. Unless we realize that flowers and body-parts and cats have quite a lot in common. We are all made of stardust after all. (Also nothing new, really.)
Now back to work.


these are lovely..

Posted by: anonymous on August 4, 2002 07:01 PM

thank you so much, anonymous visitor. : )

Posted by: Witold on August 4, 2002 07:19 PM

and so many decades before Moby:

'I came upon a child of God
He was walking along the road
And I asked him, where are you going
And this he told me
I'm going down to Yasgurs' farm
I'm going to join in a rock'n'roll band
I'm going to camp out on the land
And try to get my soul free

We are stardust,
We are golden,
And we've got to get ourselves
Back to the garden...

Then can I walk beside you
I have come here to lose the smog
And I feel to be a cog in something turning
Well maybe it's the time of year
Or maybe it's the time of man
I don't know who I am
But life is for learning

We are stardust,
We are golden,
And we've got to get ourselves
Back to the garden...

By the time we got to Woodstock
We were half a million strong
And everywhere there was song and celebration
And I dreamed I saw the bombers
Riding shotgun in the sky
And they were turning into butterflies
Above our nation

We are stardust,
Billion year old carbon,
We are golden,
Caught in the devil's bargain,
And we've got to get ourselves
Back to the garden...

–Joni Mitchell

And 'Conversation' is another very good song.

I am so happy I came back. I did not realize one could make the lillies bigger. They are even more beautiful that way : )

Posted by: a free soul on August 5, 2002 12:19 AM

the mysterious s-syndrome.
and it ain't so, no no it aint so,
and ain't isn' t even a word yet.

Posted by: T on August 5, 2002 01:37 AM

Oh, thank you, thank you, thank you.
These are all quite marvelous comments.
Have a wonderful day.

Posted by: Witold on August 5, 2002 08:14 AM

found this a while ago, and want to build one, just don't have the time.


check out some of his other inventions, too!

Posted by: griff on August 5, 2002 12:31 PM

Wow, this is fantastic! It also reminds me of The Story of the Seitz Cameras...
Thank you so much for the link. (I also like the Lego Machines)

Posted by: Witold on August 5, 2002 01:22 PM

Lovely as always :)

Posted by: sian on August 5, 2002 02:41 PM
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