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A “New Normal” Series of Abstract Photography of Everyday Objects

  • Click through the gallery to see Helen's "New Normal" photography series.

  • Abstract of everyday items. Photo by Helen Arase.

  • Abstract of everyday items. Photo by Helen Arase.

  • Abstract of everyday items. Photo by Helen Arase.

  • Abstract of everyday items. Photo by Helen Arase.

  • Abstract of everyday items. Photo by Helen Arase.

  • Abstract of everyday items. Photo by Helen Arase.

Location

Alhambra , CA

The Alhambra Source is excited to launch a new community-based series based on our collective, yet varied, pandemic experience.

We highly recommend you read more about what we’re looking for here so you can see Helen’s pitch, but in short, we want you to tell us what you’ve been doing for the last two months or how you’re experiencing the new normal, in the form of video, audio, photography or short text. (You can see more examples on the “New Normal” page too, generated by our interns!)

The following is an example of the kind of work we’ll be publishing from the community. This will be the general format, and show up in our bank of stories. We’ll curate great submissions and post them with the tag “New Normal” and announce when we have a dedicated spot on the homepage for the group.


Using Time to Be Creative

When it comes to your profession, I generally agree with painter Chuck Close’s oft cited phrase, “inspiration is for amateurs,” but when it comes to types of photography other than documentary photography I feel like an amateur.

I’m a photojournalist, and while basically all of my work is in that genre, some of my best college memories are of lighting hot dogs and wine bottles in a studio. Now, I don’t have a studio – or attractive food to photograph, if I’m being honest.

It’s been a long time since I had a non-documentary photography project that I’ve enjoyed and felt “inspired” to do.

I am lucky enough to have a job right now, but my creative energy is significantly drained at the end of the day – there’s only so much COVID-19 someone can listen to and write about before they need to take a break!

Chuck Close working on “Keith, 1970”

The next part of Close’s phrase is, “the rest of us just show up and get to work. If you wait around for the clouds to part and a bolt of lightning to strike you in the brain, you are not going to make an awful lot of work.”

So, in an effort to stretch – or force – my creative energies to get to work, I gave myself a daily challenge that didn’t require much preparation: make abstract photographs of everyday items.

These are of objects in my apartment.

 

Helen is the multimedia reporter for the Alhambra Source and a freelance photojournalist. She makes a mean pot roast, bakes too many cookies and is always on the prowl for good shabu-shabu.


Tell us about what you’ve done in the last few months and how you’re experiencing the new normal: Contribute a video, audio, text or photo series.

Questions? Email [email protected].

Thank you for reading our story! Alhambra Source is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. Our newsroom reports fact-based quality journalism that educates, informs and engages our diverse communities - with no paywall. Support our mission and donate today!

The Alhambra Source encourages comment on our stories. However, we do not vet comments for accuracy or endorse links to posts in the comment section. The thoughts and opinions expressed belong solely to the author of the comment.

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