When I make a photograph I want it to be an altogether new object, complete and self-contained, whose basic condition is order (unlike the world of events and actions whose permanent condition is change and disorder).
I was given a small camera as a wedding gift from a very dear friend. My first pictures were taken on my honeymoon. As soon as I became familiar with the camera, I was intrigued with the possibilities of expression it offered. It was like a discovery for me.
However, I must stress that my own interest is immediate and in the picture. What I am conscious of and what I feel is the picture I am making, the relation of that picture to others I have made and, more generally, its relation to others I have experienced.
To me documentary photography means making a picture so that the viewer doesn’t think about the man who made the picture. At its esthetic core is very old tradition in art: naturalism. And its purpose is to document all facets of social relationships.
I may be wrong, but the essential illustrative nature of most documentary photography, and the worship of the object per se, in our best nature photography, is not enough to satisfy the man of today, compounded as he is of Christ, Freud, and Marx.
For some reason or other there was in me the desire to see the world clean and fresh and alive, as primitive things are clean and fresh and alive. The so-called documentary picture left me wanting something.
Producing a photographic document involves preparation in excess. There is first the examination of the idea of the project. Then the visits to the scene, the casual conversations, and more formal interviews - talking, and listening, and looking, looking. ... And finally, the pictures themselves, each one planned, talked, taken and examined in terms of the whole.