Thursday, August 15, 2019

What inspires me to create?

Hi Gang

Flying Tortuga Brother Carl here:

I have been thinking a lot about something we discussed in the last episode of the podcast when we interviewed artist Beatriz Chachamovits.  I had stated the importance for an artist to have a strong point of view to create great art.  I stand by that with an addition.  A point of view is critical when you are competing against others to get selected for a show with a theme or for a residency.  This is what can take a good artist and have their work stand out from others.  There is something else that I ignored or did not think about and that is passion.  As an artist you must be passionate about the creating of your art.  If you'd rather finish a piece you are working on than eat dinner then you have passion for the work or the process.  That is the building block needed for all art.  It is what allows you to express your point of view but can stand alone also without having a point of view it can be about being profoundly moved by something and wanting to share it with others.  That can also be the well great and important art comes from.  I have been kicking around these ideas on the nature of art and thinking about where do I fit on this scale.  I don't see them as opposites but more as overlapping motives like a Venn Diagram.  I'll go so far as to say these factors go hand in hand and are always pushing artists forward.

What does this mean for me.  I think of it as micro and macro.  The wide-angle view for me photographing the natural world to make people aware of the need to protect our open green spaces.  It is good for the planet and has the benefit of being great for people who get out and experience it and then become advocates for saving these spaces for future generations.  On the closeup personal level I am affected by the beauty of these spaces and want to capture them for myself and other, but the selfish part of this the secret cause as it were is the magic I experience in being out in nature.  I came to these ideas by spending a good portion of my summer out in nature with my camera.  The truth is while I loved capturing it with my camera.  The experience of being there is what made my heart soar.  Early in this summer I camped for 8 days in Oregon and Washington exploring the coastline, Mt Hood and Olympic National Park.  It had a profound affect on me as I reconnected with nature and experienced the grand scale of the Pacific NorthWest.  Then this week I again was struck by the beauty of our world in the area I am focusing my work on making people aware of; that is the Everglades and Big Cypress Swamp.  I met my guide Scott Randolph from Clyde Butcher's Big Cypress Gallery before dawn and headed into the swamp in darkness to be able to experience the dawn chorus of frogs and birds as the theater of light came up in the east while were out in the dome and then as the light strengthened we were under the canopy with the soft golden early morning light.  It was breathtaking.  I was able to really connect with the swamp and was moved to create photos that I can share with others to help explain why restoring the flow to the Everglades and Big Cypress is so important to the environment but also so important as a place for people to go and explore.  I really can't explain how fulfilling it is to be out in that water becoming enveloped by nature.  So I produce my work and hope to be doing many residencies in the National Parks so that I can experience this feeling of wonder for myself over and over and also share it through my photos and motivate others to get outside and enjoy, support and protect nature.

Loggerhead 2020 or bust,


  1. Love your work Carl and your commitment to the most important thing in our lives,our environment and the beauty within. All the best to you Carl.Keep doing what you do.Passion is very important.