I'm a visual artist, web designer, and art educator in Corner Brook, NL, Canada.

Posts tagged “Handwritten” (page 1 of 3)


Trying some variations on scanned journals + photos. I’m really enjoying going through my archives and finding things to pair together. With these montages it’s easy to get carried away manipulating curves and colours in Photoshop, but I’m trying not to tinker too much.

watching the world through glass

More pages for maybe a book project. These are a little tricky to assemble, because the writing is not always my best. I’m tempted to rewrite some of the passages, but a constraint of this project is use my handwriting scanned directly from old notebooks. I often write outdoors, and there’s an immediacy and spontaneity there that I don’t want to lose. So I am only editing the writing by cropping, and occasionally moving bits around. Leaving scratches and scribbles helps convey the idea that the writing is firsthand.

It’s difficult to match ideas in the photo diptychs with ideas in the writing. When the writing is overlaid on the photos, like here, there also has to be a place to fit it without disrupting the composition of the diptychs. I’m realizing this works best with smaller snippets of writing. I like the way the passage above works with the text that is already in the photos. Using full notebook pages seems to be a better way to include longer passages.

The photos above are from Cape Spear, the ones below from Halifax and Pasadena, and they are all from indexical. Four photos on a page sometimes look crowded at this size, but I think it will work better if they are printed larger. Each spread of four photos is meant to be read as two vertical diptychs, which will be more evident if they are printed in book form. I’d also like to keep the handwriting more or less the same size across all the pages, which will require some reworking. These are drafts.

A dead bumblebee / leaving the scaffolding

“Whatever change is looks something like this – a leaning, a consciousness toward, a showing to.”

— Lisa Robertson, from Doubt and the History of Scaffolding

A glass-bottomed boat

I am teaching a class in Arcata, California. Still working on this book thing! These are from Halifax.

Thinking through to a book.

Walking, photographing and writing are key to my art practice. I produce a series of small recorded moments, a stream of photos and writing. Walking becomes a creative act, a way of collecting images and memories.

Blogging complements this practice, providing an impetus for me to polish things until they can be published. This editing adds order and narrative, stringing a series of small moments together into something more. I make connections: two photos placed together can carry a story in the space between them. Two diptychs placed together suggest a system.

Publishing digital photos on the web allows me a spontanaeity and freedom that I’ve never experienced when presenting photographs as printed objects. The web gives the work a liveliness that I find invigorating.

Each blog begins as a sort of public sketchbook, and over time begins to synthesize into a cohesive stream of work. With indexical, I noticed myself continuously interpreting the city as a palimpsest of contrasting visual symbols. This coincides with my interest in psychogeography and walking as a creative act. Pairing photos into diptychs has become a way to express the push and pull of meaning I experience as I wander Halifax, Corner Brook, and other places I’ve lived and visited over the past three years.

It’s a matter of finding intersections between the unexpected and the everyday. How the city presents itself, divided by how the city is. I photograph the remainder of this elusive equation.

Writing has always accompanied my photography, but has often remained tucked away in notebooks. When I published my Halifax Walking Notebook on my blog, rather than retyping and editing the text, I scanned each page and displayed the work as a series of images. Presenting my handwriting with all its struggles, scribbles and spelling mistakes gives the writing an immediacy and personality that is missing from typewritten text. It also complements the way I approach photography, rarely editing my photos beyond basic cropping, contrast and colour adjustments. I make a point of writing in public places, and the writing is frequently descriptive and steeped in firsthand experience. I often write about photography and walking.

Thus I publish my photos the way one usually writes, and present my writing photographically. This book project will be a synthesis of digital photography and analog text. These contrasts form the heart of the work.

Where I have trailed off

This is closer to what I want to get at with this book project. The writing is from a trip to Montreal in 2010, the photos from when I lived there in 2006 (both were on my old photoblog, non*glossy).

Content ©  2014 Matthew Hollett. RSS