I can remember my teacher in graduate school Aaron Siskind telling me to keep it simple. Made sense to me. Not knowing what I was doing, it seemed like a good idea to make simple statements, to work towards complexity by starting from a foundation of knowledge that was known and manageable. This would also serve to build my confidence when I had little.
I remember thinking then that what Aaron was really telling me was to "keep it simple, stupid" but in retrospect, I don't think so. He wasn't diminishing me or my work. He was interested in my efforts at design and was a very experienced teacher. He could see me reaching and making mistakes. "Slow down and build a foundation first", he seemed to be saying.
On the one hand, photographing out here is deceptively simple. Get off the paved roads onto the dirt tracks that are the farmers' access roads to his crops, stop, point your camera and click the shutter. But to really capture this phenomenal place, to distill the Palouse down to photographs that are essential and elegant is not for the faint of heart. This takes care, experience, expertise, and a strong work ethic.
Lesson learned? Let me know what you think: Neal's email