A Change Is Gonna Come

Nebraska, USA 2017 (photo credit: Christian Espinoza)

We live in an age of analysis and measurement. Our devices track our sleep, how many steps we take, how many calories we consume, how often we use social media, our heart rate, our screen time, and so much more. GPS can track our every movement, Tinder can find us a mating partner based on geographical location, and if you want to track your period, menstruation, menopause, ovulation calendar, and monitor your pregnancy within a single mobile application – you can (it’s called Flo).

You may be wondering to yourself why we need to live a life so heavily analyzed and measured. Our lives are becoming quantified but for what? The app Exist boasts that ‘by combining data from services you already use, [they] can help you understand what makes you more happy, productive, and active.’ But why do you need an app to tell you that, I mean, shouldn’t you already know yourself well enough to figure it out? Maybe not, it seems.

Data is the gold. Specifically, your data.

I can imagine a future where data mining and analytics will render many jobs and/ or industries redundant, whilst at the same time create new opportunities and possible pathways that we can’t even imagine yet. We can’t fully predict what the next technological revolution will bring, but we can assume it will be extremely disruptive.

At the height of its power, the photography company Kodak employed more than 140,000 people and was worth $28 billion. They even invented the first digital camera. But today Kodak is bankrupt, and the new face of digital photography has become Instagram. When Instagram was sold to Facebook for a billion dollars in 2012, it employed only thirteen people.

– Jaron Lanier, from ‘Who Owns the Future?

Life in Color

Takapuna, Auckland NZ 2019 (photo credit: Christian Espinoza)

If you had the choice of seeing life in color or black and white, which would you pick?

Technicolor revolutionized the movie industry. They captured the natural reds, greens and blues and soaked them in their respective complimentary colors of cyan, magenta, and yellow, then ran them through a dye transfer process – thus creating the dreamy Technicolor image we all know and love (and if you don’t know, just watch any Hollywood movie from the 1920’s thru 1950’s and 60’s).

It was this combination of additive colors (Red, Green, and Blue) with their subtractive counterparts (Cyan, Magenta, and Yellow) which led to the revolution for color photography in the 1940’s, led by pioneer photographer, Jeannette Klute. Klute helped Eastman Kodak develop its own dye transfer process, and in the decades that followed, artists such as William Eggleston would go on to use this this film and create works of vibrant color that would almost jump off the page when you saw it. I am sure most people are familiar with the portrait of the Afghan Girl, shot on assignment for National Geographic by Steve McCurry, on delicious Kodachrome film stock (not too mention the gravure printing process adopted by National Geographic, which makes all the colors as deep as the Marion Trench).

Color is light, and light is life. It is a physical force, powerful enough to move you psychologically. Color brings back memories, it helps to connect us, show the world in all its glory, and it can bring us closer to a deeper understanding of ourselves.

I have just launched my new website, showing a collection of my photographic work from the last 15 years of shooting in color. I would love to know what you guys think, and also feel free to share it around!