Natural History

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©2017 Dave Ortiz from the series, Natural History

Ideas can swirl about in your mind for years with nothing manifesting itself. Then one day you just start creating the images. All of a sudden your brain just knows just what to shoot. This seems to be the case with my very latest images – Natural History. That is not to say that all of the images will be new images. In times like these I can go back into my digital archive and grab images knowing just where they belong.

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©2017 Dave Ortiz, an image from a year ago finds a place, from the series Natural History

The title, Natural History, is used ironically (as the Williamsburg hipsters would do). They are urban and suburban scenes with a bit of “nature” included. This sort of turns the classical landscape practice of eliminatitng any sign of a human presence. It is also  autobiographical. I was raised a poor city boy, living in the ghettos of Brooklyn (I was born in the Marcy Projects, the same projects where Jay Z was born and raised. Oh where is my Beyonce!). I loved nature and the natural sciences, and was already reading science books beyond the 12th grade level in grade school! But the only nature I could see close up, aside form the occasional visit to the Prospect Park Zoo was whatever was at my feet or up above. Clouds just above factory roofs, plants growing in the cracks of sidewalks and the gutters of the street, scrawny Ginkgo trees along the streets; these were my Ansel Adams like inspirations.

All of this hit me just this afternoon as I was sitting in a pizza parlor having lunch and a truck pulls up right in front of the parlor window and then, everything falls into place (see first image).

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©2017 Dave Ortiz from the series, Natural History

 

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