f/Egor: More Bartlett’s Rejects

Concision is a virtue. Some writers express themselves thoroughly with only a laconically minimalist assemblage of words. These wordsmiths — deities of pithiness — are my inspiration. For unlike them, I am an adjective junkie cavorting in the company of the loquacious. I imbibe in drunken orgies of word gluttony and succumb most decadently to the pleasures of literary contrivance, chasing after bare naked semantics and groping at nubile symbolic metaphors — vices all glaringly illuminated by this very paragraph.

Of the 19 articles I penned previously for the Leica blog, 18 of them feature prose with an unequivocally purplish hue. The only one that didn’t — the one in which I managed an air of dignity and sober succinctness, was a little post called “Bartlett’s Rejects.”

At the time, I described the article as “nothing more than a mathematically-challenged baker’s dozen of my own personal photography quotes — unadorned with tedious explanatory prose and contextual verbiage.”

The article was neat, tidy, mussless and fussless. 14 little thoughts that each spoke volumes despite their brevity. So after my recent 3-part, 10,000 word Monochrom review, what better way to celebrate my 20th f/Egor article than with a sequel to my one and only exercise in linguistic economy?

And so, to the blare of imaginary trumpets, I present for your copying, pasting and tweeting pleasure… More Bartlett’s Rejects:

“The most important element in a photograph is the one you can’t see.” – grEGORy simpson

“Never let truth ruin a perfectly good photograph.” – grEGORy simpson

“A monkey could take the same photos I do — my skill is in recognizing which are worth sharing.” – gEGORy simpson

“I’m much more concerned with what a photograph says than what it looks like.” – grEGORy simpson

“I’d rather have a phone in my camera than a camera in my phone.” – grEGORy simpson

“Photography is story-telling with your fingers crossed.” – grEGORy simpson

“I admire people who are astute enough to criticize my photos for all the same reasons I like them.” – grEGORy simpson

“A photographer who judges others by the cameras they use would be better off owning an endoscope.” – grEGORy simpson

“Imagine how visually rich the world would be if photographers took their craft as seriously as they take themselves.” – grEGORy simpson

“If your prints aren’t good enough, you’re not distant enough.” – grEGORy simpson

“My primary photographic motivator is a fear of irrelevance.” – grEGORy simpson

“No matter how awful they are, I won’t discard photographs — that would be akin to denying my own existence.” – grEGORy simpson

“I know I’ve done something worthwhile when a large number of strangers feel compelled to tell me how horrible I am.” – grEGORy simpson

“I don’t photograph what I see, I photograph what I feel.” – grEGORy simpson

-grEGORy simpson

grEGORy simpson is a professional “pounder.” You may find him pounding on his computer keyboard, churning out articles for both the Leica Blog and his own blog at ULTRAsomething.com. Or you may hear him pounding on a musical keyboard, composing music and designing new sounds. Frequently, he’s out pounding city pavement and photographing humans simply being. And that sound you hear? That’s either the sound of him pounding on doors trying to get hired or, more likely, it’s the sound of him pounding his head against the wall when he doesn’t. Fellow pounders are welcome to follow along on the ULTRAsomething Facebook page or G+ account.

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7 comments

  • Happened on the Leica blog just a week or so ago after relocating. I was looking for some photographic inspiration and read your 3-part series on the new Monochrom. And now, this piece which brought a smile to my face and a wanting to grab my dad’s old Yashica Electro35 GS, load it with a roll of Tri-X and go wandering in my new location.

    I shall continue to follow your ramblings as I find them inspiring. I have been seeking a new direction to my work and your ramblings are a help. Thanks for sharing….

  • I want “Envision the Future” blown up big to put on my wall so I can stare at it for hours. It works for me on so many levels. Enough of this linguistic economy – let’s get back loquacious EGOR ASAP :-)

  • Well Gregory, like I said with your first or second post you are a wordsmith of the first order. It takes a special kind of talent to see things the way you do and long may you do so. This last piece is akin to poetry of the limerick variety I am sure in another age the likes Lear and others would have approved…

  • I am a big fan of your well crafted articles and inspiring pictures here and on ULTRAsomething . This is another great post. Love the photographs and really like all quotes, except for one:

    “A photographer who judges others by the cameras they use would be better off owning an endoscope.” – grEGORy simpson

    Being a person that does not judge others by their cameras and at the same time “owns”‘endoscopes and use them for living, puts me in a weird spot. Maybe I didn’t get the quote in the first place as English is not my first language….

  • Richard: Mmmm. Yashica Electro35. I always wanted to shoot with one of those, but time, circumstance and budget never merged. Thanks for you comments. Hope the articles inspire some good shots. And keep the Tri-X flowing!

    Robert: I think quote #3 applies to this shot (as well as “focus, schmocus” from the first Bartlett’s Rejects article). Shots like this are among of my favorites, but I always hesitate to post them to widely read sites because they’re so far from “accepted” standards. Glad to know others sometimes see what I see.

    Stefano: Thx

    Greycoopers: (spoiler alert): There are exactly 17 levels of meaning within this photo. Hopefully that bit of knowledge will quench your desire to hang this, thus allowing use of the wall for a more wall-worthy photo by a more wall-worthy photographer.

    Michael: Thanks for killing me with kindness, but I must protest that the mere hint that this is “poetry” has just caused every poet in history to roll over in their graves — even those still living.

    Rafeal: Thanks for the kind words, and after I inadvertently insulted you, no less! The endoscope comment was an attempt to state (in photographic and ‘humorous’ terms) that such a person has their head up their… umm… “sun don’t shine” region. I figured that a more appropriate way of stating this cliché was to suggest that such a person might be the type to view their own “sun don’t shine” region with an endoscope (after all, it’s physically impossible to insert one’s head there). My apologies to all endoscope owners everywhere who use their endoscopes for “good” rather than “evil.” Endoscopes are good. Endoscope users a good people. Endoscopes keep Olympus in business — and the more companies we have making cameras, the better off we all are. How’s that for backpedaling?

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