Reblogging is appreciated with all copyright, notes and source information intact.
Inside Aunt Liz’s barn
© kate rieke
Amazing capture! Almost sucks you in. Many pictures with a central vanishing point look so boring, but this one is a most intriguing exception. Great photo!
PWS - Pete
Thanks, Pete. I’m a fan of yours, as well.
Inside Aunt Liz’s barn
© kate rieke
Farm in autumn
© kate rieke
I absolutely find you this interesting! And more! Lovely recognition.
That’s because you’re the best BFF a girl could ever hope for, Kendra! xxoo
This is fantastic!!
The extreme white & black highlight the deep, luscious details. \
this is really cool!
Wow! Outstanding! Love it!
Thank you! I made my husband drive down a dirt road and onto someone’s property for this photo. The victory goes to him.
great and surrealistic
Thank you so much, my friend.
Beautiful landscape! :)))
Thank you! It’s so hard to mess up a sunset photo at Uncle Mike’s. Some of the prettiest sunsets I’ve ever seen have been there. Sadly, we don’t usually get the chance to visit except on Thanksgiving.
So lovely!!! ♡ Love it! ;))))
This is so cool,:)), and the light is insanely good. :))
Beautiful and so sweet
Thank you so much. The irony of my photographing cats is that I’m deathly allergic and have an asthma attack whenever I’m near one. (That’s why I’m a dog person.) But this little kitty was just too sweet not to photograph! I just made it quick. ;)
Obviously I am a cow-whisperer.
Color infrared using IR converted Nikon
© kate rieke
A Year of Photography 2013 — No. 5
Dog behind dirty window
Shortly after I took this photo in February, the bottom fell out for me creatively. I couldn’t pick up a camera for almost three months and considered giving up photography. It was a difficult and depressing time. I learned that creativity comes and goes, it’s never guaranteed, and it’s best to wait patiently for it to come back.
Still life with pink daisies
Thank you so much to my amazing teammates at Lensblr for reblogging this photo. And to everyone who liked and reblogged it, too. xxoo
Hay bales, infrared
© kate rieke
You’ve left me speechless with this post. Thank you, thank you, thank you. Even my closest friends don’t find me this interesting. (They would probably laugh if they read it, shake their heads and recount an embarrassing story about how often I’m a complete geek or doing something idiotic.)
You seem to have put your finger on why I’m drawn to using blur so often. I’m not sure I even realized it myself until now. I see now that they are really self-portraits. So thank you so much for that, too. Sometimes it takes someone outside yourself to show you what’s inside.
Someday I’ll post a photo you don’t like, but until then winter is upon us (as you’ve shown us in your gorgeous landscapes), so please think twice about the bet you’ve made with yourself. I do actually hide my (many) bad photos and every time I post a photo here, I think to myself (to quote you from your post), “Nice try, Rieke.”
P.S. The still life with white irises photo was indeed meant to be quirky. You totally get me. :)
Experimental abstract of sunflower
© kate rieke
I made a bet with myself. I bet that some day Kate Rieke was going to post a picture I did not like. I am lucky I made this bet with myself because then I can cheat and keep my shirt. If it weren’t for that I would be dispensing with clothes I don’t even want to talk about here. She either occasionally takes bad pictures and, unlike myself, hides them, or only takes good ones. I have a feeling it is the latter.
Now I have complained before about being unable to reblog more than one picture at a time, and I want to talk about at least three here, so stand by, I will get to the one I reblogged in a minute. I will provide links to the others and you can open them in a separate window, if you are still with me. You should come along. Trust me, you won’t be disappointed.
The first thing that strikes me about Kate’s work is its extraordinary range. She does babies, horses, dogs, grain elevators, parking lots and park benches, what she describes as experimental abstracts with creative blur like the one I have reblogged here, still lives to die for and, no doubt just to make a one trick pony like myself feel bad, wonderful landscapes. Her grain elevator actually caused Ed Newman (iam-emcn) to swear, “God damn it this is good.” Usually he says “Peas.” I have not been able to figure out what he means by “peas”; I think it is generally positive. But I am thinking “God damn” has got to be even better. Having spent a few days in a desultory walk through Kate’s archive, I know exactly how he feels. God damn this is good.
Before I talk about the picture I reblogged here, I want to talk about this one, “Still life with a blue pitcher.” The problem with these pieces I am writing on other photographers is that my eye is not formally trained—actually it is the problem with my pictures as well—so I am likely to say something stupid here. But it has always struck me that there are two big dangers in still life: clutter and cloy. Too many peaches, too ripe. Kate never falls into that trap. This picture, “Still life with a blue pitcher”, is just gorgeous, gorgeous in its simplicity, gorgeous in the gradations of blue from right to left, gorgeous in the way the sunflowers are drawn to the light—sunflowers are nothing if not photo-tropic—gorgeous in the way the shaded blue on the right provides just a touch of texture, gorgeous in its avoidance of putting too many sunflowers in that pitcher—there are only three and they look almost lonely there, inching their way towards the light, as if they could move. Gorgeous.
What is it about flowers in a pitcher that is so compelling? I never looked at flowers before I took pictures. Never. And the first time I went out and bought flowers to photograph, I immediately, instinctively, stuck them in a pitcher—actually it was a porcelain coffee pot—and then went out and bought two more, real pitchers, not coffee pots. I am guessing it’s something about the graceful curves of the handle and spout that amplify the curvature of the stems and buds. But for me, it signals the tiniest triumph of art over function: as pretty as they sometimes are, real pitchers are not designed to hold flowers; they have to be expropriated for that purpose, as this one is, brilliantly, here.
Now you could argue that “Still life with a blue pitcher” is a bit conventional. I wouldn’t agree, but if that worries you, take a look “Still life with white irises.” The picture manages , I think, to be quite beautiful, though in a much different way than “Still life with a blue pitcher." But what is really remarkable about it, for me, is that it’s a subtle visual parody of the the whole theme of pitchers as vases. That gambit should not work here. The irises are too big, there are too many of them, the pitcher is too small. Everything is out proportion: the whole thing is going to tumble over. "Get a vase!" it all but announces. Nice try Rieke. And yet, and yet, and yet somehow everything manages to hold together in perfect equipoise—the white against the black, the irises lurching toward freedom (and disaster) and the pitcher keeping them gently intact. Perfect.
Which brings me finally to the picture I reblogged here. Kate refers to this as “Experimental abstract of sunflower.” I love this picture, but I don’t find it abstract at all. This because it seems to me after much bigger game. It is not abstract enough to prevent us from seeing that it is a still life—a sunflower sitting in what looks to be another improvised vase, a mason jar, I think. Now Kate uses blur creatively in a number of photographs, and they all seem fine to me, but she is really on to something here, in this picture. Blur can connote any number of things, including too much to drink, but for me it almost always means one of three things: either the camera’s moving or what’s being photographed is moving, or both. Which is fine when you are photographing grass in the wind or a child’s exuberance exploding into motion. But what’s it doing here, in this brilliant—and I think much under appreciated—picture, a “still” life? Well for me, it points eloquently to the central illusion in the entire genre: the “life” in a still life may be life, but it is never, ever still. The world hurls us from one moment to the next with a velocity that no shutter, no matter how fast, can comprehend. The attempt to stop time with a camera or a paint brush or a broken coke bottle or whatever you use to paint with is, in the end, a losing battle.
Which brings me to the last picture of Kate I want to talk about, that of her husband, which she reblogged as A Year in Photography 2013 - No. 4. A potrait this fine makes you wonder why we ever bother to try to take pictures of people we don’t love. I am not an expert on portraiture, but I do love this picture. We could talk about the formal elements at length, the way the straight line of the horizon is counterbalanced by the curve of the backpack straps and the hat and slight bend in the grass impishly hanging from her husband’s lips—fine stuff, Kate being her usual brilliant self. But notice how she has caught him in moment we can’t completely comprehend. He is looking at what? Not the camera. And because of that we actually see more. The jaw is strong and square but the inherent strength, it seems to me, comes from the intelligence of those eyes.
Kate wrote in the original post of this picture, “This is my husband. He carries my camera when it gets too heavy. I had breast cancer two years ago. He did all the heavy lifting then, too, but he’d say he didn’t.” It is just a guess on my part, but taking into account the body of Kate’s fine work, and looking at the inherent intelligence in those eyes, I suspect he would say he didn’t do ALL the heavy lifting, and it wouldn’t be a lie.
I am thankful for Kate Rieke’s photography, and you should be too.
Shuttlecock by Oldenburg & van Bruggen
bw infrared on IR converted Nikon
© kate rieke