State of Light David C. Hill – Personal Photography and Film Projects
It was the poignant and dramatic black and white images of Bernice Abbot and Pirkle Jones that influenced and continue to influence my photographic expressions. Bernice Abbot was a poet and much of her poetry was the photographic potential of New York City’s ever-changing skyline, the stark contrast between the old and new, its street scenes, its escalating development in technology and society, and its urban architecture that inspired her. She wanted to convey the idea that it was the people’s collective behavior, thoughts, actions and dreams that built this city. I was also deeply inspired by Pirkle Jones’ various collaborations and photographic essays, particularly one entitled “Death of a Valley” and his portrayal of the Black Panthers of San Francisco Bay Area.
Thus to me, it is about preserving the stories that are the roots of the Bay Area’s culture, its diverse people: where they work, live and play, and their daily activities; in short – the human condition, as well as environmental and civic issues. To do this, I believe in the importance of photos remaining un-manipulated to avoided distortion and to ensure preserving cultural, historical, environmental and civic roots. Finding the unnoticed in San Francisco thrills me to no end and burns me with passion.
To communicate my own thoughts and thus to provoke or inspire, I try to bring to life images of that are otherwise invisible to the multitudes of unseeing eyes that go thumping, thudding or stomping, through corners, alleys, and streets. I love documenting emotions and activity and life and I find that in the Bay Area life can be wonderfully diverse, rich or miserable, glorious or desolate. Hence, I hope to capture these moments all with my camera, to give them visibility and expression and thus to help sharpen the artistic minds of viewers. Finding the culture and humanity in everyday things like deserts and skies, movement and activity, faces and emotions, and road trips gives life and expression to my art. I find great interest in the stories being told or yet to be told by the everyday objects and people down street or on every corner of the city.
I believe that the time I spend traveling and volunteering in East Palo where I maintain a urban garden enriches my photography and enables me to capture the essence of a client’s ideas because the garden helps me keep in touch with my own subtleties. My professional photography enables me to keep documenting and preserving the memorable hidden stories of everyday people.