Notes on the Process
Steve Wing

The process is boringly familiar: point camera, press button. Repeat. That is what an observer would see. But sometimes an image emerges that has some special quality. There is something internal, unseen but seeing. A mood, a certain sensitivity or attentiveness. A playful energy, mischief. And the lens helps limit the focus to a fragment of the moment, which facilitates seeing that fragment differently. The camera is an instrument for directing attention.

Another unseen part of the process begins with assembling some images and an email for a submission. If it is accepted, something unexpected can happen.

For example, when first submitting to Foliate Oak I sent 4 images, two nature shots and two abstracts, thinking maybe they would publish one pair or the other. But she accepted all 4 and put them together on the page. I wrote back, asking are you sure you want to publish them together like that? Maybe two now and the other pair in a future issue? The editor wrote back, don't worry, they work well together. And I think she was right, though I hadn't thought so at the time:


A similar thing happened with a submission to counterexample poetics. By then I had a different sense about what kinds of images might go together. But the editor found just the right sequence to present them, so that the lines, colors, and subjects unfold almost like an image story, a whole greater than the sum of its pieces:


When we see a published image, it is easy to forget how many people were involved besides the artist. These include those who create the amazing technology involved and the artists who came before, whose influence continues.