What should I be doing instead of this?
January 6th, 2009 By | Arts & Culture | Posted In: Visual Art

A Thousand Words ... Or A Few Awesome Ones


I am (in addition to the faceless name behind some CityBeat blogs) a photographer... more specifically a photojournalist. I don't say this lightly.

For me it's not a hobby. I have several large student loans and a disgruntled girlfriend who would agree with me. Before I came to CityBeat, that was my official title. I say this because I want you to know that I've seen a lot of photographs. Many of these photographs were terrible, some were cute, a few were spectacular. It's rare for me to get excited about a photograph that I haven't taken. I have to get excited about my shots (someone has to).

So here's the deal, Justin Quinnell is a "famous" pinhole photographer.

That's like saying he's the world's best weaver or that he knows more about flyfishing than anyone else. Pinhole photography isn't exactly a high-profile field. This is because it involves a box or a can, a very small hole, some film or photo paper, and a really long amount of time to make one picture. Sometimes making a pinhole photo only takes a few minutes, or in Justin's case, over six months.

Justin made a pinhole camera, strapped it to a telephone pole, and left it for six months. The resulting image shows the path of the sun each day as it rose slowly in the sky as the days became longer in the spring. The bridge in the photo is the England's Clifton Suspension Bridge in Bristol.

People say that a picture is worth a thousand words. Some are just worth a few really good words like "awesome," "spectacular," and "inspiring." Quinnell's father died half way through the exposure. He says that he can pick out the exact place the sun was in the photo when his father passed away. Inspired yet?

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