ashe kazanjian – garden



Mary Jane in the garden    by  Ashe Kazanjian

115 Responses to “ashe kazanjian – garden”

  • Hey DAH you are an excellent photographer, but as a curator…

  • great very moody picture, impressionism. Ashe I like you “The magician” it is very strong self-portrait. One of my favorite ever.


  • mr.soso

    there is quite a nice portrait group on flickr (of all places!!)

    you might find something you like there.

  • I have always loved this photograph, just as I loved Ashe’s series down Any Given Evening, from which I believe this photograph is a part of…if my memory is still intact….

    her magnificent face always reminded me of the girls in Balthus’ paintings, and what i particularly loved about her face and ‘presence’ in the series is that she acts as an observer, like the angels from the Wim Wenders film Der Himmel über Berlin (Wings of Desire in English)….a guardian and a watcher….what i particularly love about this phtoographer is her extraordinary face: it’s age and it’s sadness, again, a face here filled with so much ambiguity, both sadness and watchfullness…and the play of all the fields of red…

    a heartbreaking expression in a moment of tenderness and adult sadness reflected in the wise eyes of this young little girl….


  • Ashe – i adore every photo you have not just this one. there is no exception and preference. they reflect extraordinary mood.

  • Hsy, Ashe!!!!
    R U still in Prague?
    Surviving the winter?
    No rollerblades over there??
    All cobblestone streets..
    Nice meeting U up in Brooklyn..
    Stunning photo.. & of course I do
    remember your whole essay…
    Totally agree with bob..
    peace & hugs from LA..

  • Also agree with my friend HAIK..
    what’s up Haik????

  • mr.soso & ben,
    also agree…
    For your taste or style of
    portraiture.. please visit
    Don’t waste your precious time
    getting “BURNed” over here..

  • …as a curator!!!?..
    what??.. cmon finish your thought…
    Don’t be scared!

  • that’s quite aggressive of you panos. I was merely pointing out some other photographs. and it’s good to look at other photographs, right?

  • Ben that was just shameless.

    it makes me wonder who ‘mr soso’ is now,… if it was a link to some other ’place’ and the name was Mr Cola Chugging, Pizza Eating, Surf the Web 24/7,… well then i wouldn’t have to wonder.

    …or maybe providing a link to not ‘one‘, not ‘two‘, but ‘five’ baby pictures of you next your name in hot-link-lights.. well.. maybe it‘s just me that thinks that a bit shameless ;-)

    it’s a good thing that C.K.‘s is one of the top two groups on flickr to reference or i’d really open a can of humility on your arse~! (by the way Ben’s a mate and this is just an affection hard…very hard… jab to the arm)

    Anway, yes it’s a good flickr group, but more in the context of this image, and to push this link up to enjoy, hopefully before you run for flickr, I urge you to take a ride over here, you’ll feel a lot closer to one human here than a hundred strangers of there, i know i feel a bit ‘introduced’



  • Mr. SOSO…

    laughing!! my oh my..can’t you see i am trying to get you to think beyond the obvious, out of the box…what i do myself and what i may appreciate in a larger context are two different things…but, i certainly do not expect everyone to like everything…and did you ever imagine also that i just might like to stir the pot???

    anyway, stick around…surely i will put up something you may like…c’mon SOSO, you gotta love Mary Jane!!!

    cheers, david

  • joe, i though you knew me better. i have no shame.


    hey boys boys…take it easy…now Panos, Ben was just having us look at something else…relax…hey Ben, i am hoping to publish a selection of your work which i find very intriguing…i do hope you will get in touch…you two could not be more different in your work and probably in your temperament as well…frankly, i think you could both borrow a page out of each others book without giving up one single teeny bit of your respective personalities or styles…just a thought…

    cheers, david

  • well I’m off alcohol for the whole of january so it’ll be at least a month before i go all gonzo on your asses.

  • BOB…

    what a memory?? you are a virtual encyclopedia of who did what when….many thanks for remembering Ashe…she struggled through much of our class trying to get a “handle” and then everything just fell into place and she allowed herself to be “free”…as you well know , everyone says they want freedom, but when actually faced with it, can choke completely..

    cheers, david

  • BEN…

    are you in London?? if so, i know a good pub….be there soon if you want tea time instead of pub time…?????

    cheers, david

  • ‘imagine’…’Stir the pot’

    Now that question’s got me laughing.

    David, do you even have to wonder if it’s working!?!

    no offence David, i think i like it better when you stay behind the curtain and just keep turning dials, pulling levers, and pressing buttons… all those things that keep us feeling lost.

    and if you are going to pay us a visit, i’d prefer you to be much shorter, like oz-shorter ;-)


  • I’d be interested to see DAH write a brief explanation of his reasons for choosing the photos here, and what he likes about them. It might provide a starting point for discussion (instead of these ‘i love it’ ‘i hate it’ comments, and would at least be interesting if nothing else.

  • JOE…

    i think i have told you this before , but i will tell you again…you are one of the most refreshing and intelligent new writers/observers/critics i have here…we all look forward to whatever you have to say..back in New York on the 15th or so…come on down…

    cheers, david

  • ALEX…

    maybe a good idea, but not a practical one…..besides, the whole point of the picture per day is a discussion between you and the photographer…i will jump in occasionally, but frankly my job right now other than editing single and essays is to try to make it so that we are really producing original work for BURN…in other words, so that some of you may receive paid assignments…

    besides, what would i say about Mary Jane?? i just love the simplicity of this seemingly very simple portrait…perhaps it is the expression on her face that draws me in in in….combined with the overall mood ….the softness compels…the out of focus red flowers mirroring the red shirt also make my eye move around but always come back to the sweetness of her face…i like Mona Lisa, i like Mary Jane in the same way….

    cheers, david

  • Thanks David, overyly kind, and again, thanks for the invite :-)

  • Well its a shame that what you are doing With Mary Jane you can do with millions of other things, I mean “thinking behind the obvious”,this kind of thinking approaches to much the “white canvas” in a gallery.

  • David,

    Maybe you need some sort of header saying “photo of the day” with a short two lines or so saying what you said above… the point of the photo of the day.

    Actually, it may be cool to have the photo of the day and the current essay both showing on the page. That way the essay doesn’t get bumped so soon and the two would stand as more separate types of parts of the magazine. (yes I know this will make more programming work for Anton, but hell! I know he loves it.)

    Just an idea.

  • Also,
    Did you get the images I submitted? I emailed them but I can resubmit through the “submit” button if need be. Lemme know. And if they SUCKED.. thats cool too. (GRIN)

  • Ah yes… we all appreciated horses and flowers in galleries, I almost forgott. And very impressive photos, especially addicted society, or war only.
    I saw once white canvas at vernissage in one gallery two or three days after 9/11; “thinking behind the obvious”.
    Even if I could agree with you, your arguments are ridiculous.

  • I personally appreciate the way DAH has basically stayed in the background–working his ass off if putting up my essay was any example!–and letting the selected photos and essays speak for themselves. It also gives the photographers the chance to engage directly with those who leave comments. All too often our temptation is to want to know what the editor/curator thinks, but the very fact that he or she chose to post a particular photo or essay says all we need to know.

    But one thing we’ve already seEn here on Burn is that we’ve got an editor/curator who dearly loves to “stir the pot.” I’d say he’s doing a pretty damn good job so far! Burn baby BURN…


  • My first impression was: now what is this? I had a glance at the comments and then looked up the web page of Ashe to see the photo in a context, which I found very helpful in this case.
    It is part of the series „any given evening“. After looking at some of the images I loved them right away! Wow! Great images!
    The image shown above I feel is rather subtle. Something to look at for a little longer.
    As said above: it is the mood that makes this and many of Ashes images very special.
    And yes, a short introduction would be helpful.
    I enjoy this diversity of photographs. Keep them coming!

  • perhaps an alternative would be some writing from the photographer explaining why they chose to submit this particular image, and maybe also explaining the context within which the image was originally made. (i.e the larger body of work…)

  • after all, having a conversation about a single image is kind of shallow at the end of the day isn’t it…

  • When I saw this picture I got sucked into my Mac. The image filled my consciousness so completely that everything around the screen, ie all the clutter on my desk, vanished from my peripheral vision and this little girl, this delicate creature commanded my complete attention. I found myself starring at her for ages wondering about her. I was simultaneously wanting to draw her in and hug her and utterly spooked by her.

    This photograph of Mary Jane has shaken me a little and I’m not entirely sure why.

    Thank you for the experience, Ashe. It’s one I’ve not had for quite some time. I didn’t expect it. Nor was I ready for it. I was simply checking in before going to bed. I know now that I’ll be lying awake for a while.

  • I was also wondering if you received the photo that I submitted. I can have a short attention span at times and unable to keep up with the torrent of comments here but I admire what you are doing.



  • Ashe, I just went to your web site and looked at every one of your photos. I also went back to the Loft Workshop I 2008 slideshow posted under “movies” on David’s web site. I wanted to re-enter the remarkable world you’d created in that slideshow.

    Your essays transport me into worlds other than my own, but none touch me as deeply as the one “starring” Mary Jane. This little girl has seen it all yet retains an innocence that breaks my heart. This particular image is iconic in my opinion. It shows he world as reflected in the sad eyes of a little girl who has seen more of life than I, even though I’m some 60 years her elder.

    Ashe, when I look at your images I totally forget about technique and simply fall into whatever story you are telling. You are the real thing.


  • off alcohol, on coffee …

  • DAH

    nice to see our class getting some love over here. “machete” would be a good one to put up here…

    will hopefully have an update for you in the next week or two regarding “shared september”


    seeing MJ here brings me right back to our class…thanks for that.

  • But Ben, it seems to me we’ve had some pretty significant discussions that were triggered by a single photo here already. Katharina Hesse’s “Bangkok” and Tom Chambers’ “Prom 3” are just two examples.


  • WAYNE…

    yes, i do have your photo…along with about 300 others….i look carefully at everything and then just make a decision….obviously i cannot publish all that are submitted, but all will be given very careful review…i will let you know soonest by private e-mail where you stand in the lineup…

    cheers, david

  • MARC…

    yes, i keep trying to figure out a way to use that machete picture….do not worry, i will come up with the most appropriate time…hmmmm, laughing all over again amigo!!

    cheers, david

  • one of which seemed to involve lots and lots of hot air and speculation, with the photographer having to defend herself constantly. a typical “webisode” in my eyes…

    i actually think that this whole site would be better with comments disabled on both photo essays and single images…

    as it is, it seems like the photographs play second fiddle to a whole load of bickering.

    for me, a brief description of the image and the photographers pitch would be enough – and some way of contacting the photographer if people feel the need to pass on their appreciation/thoughts.

    leave the “dialogue” in the “dialogue” section.

    leave the

  • Ashe…

    it was great to see this photo again …damn, what a mood! Can’t wait to see what you find in Prague.

  • David:

    ;)))…i have a ridiculous memory for people’s faces, trivia (especially trivial/useless things), memories, photographs, books, useless quotes and moments, but i always forget the exact dates of people’s birthdays (like my sons) ….it drives Marina crazy ;)))))…im totally impractical f.u’d guy…i remember seeing Ashe’s essay and being stunned by this child’s face, and also that picture of the tall brunette in one doorthreshold and young couple about to fuck in the other…and this little child’s face, like a guardian, ‘governing’ that series :)))…

    freedom’s just another word for nothing else to lose ;))))

    hugs from the family

  • astonishing face. it stays with you, almost hauntingly.
    i had the same reaction as paul, staring at her a long while-
    really pulled in.

    is it my monitor or is her face violet-colored?
    not that it matters. it bothered me at first
    then all i saw was her expression.

    KYUNGHEE LEE fans — her book is for sale, SIGNED, from Photo-Eye:

    rock on!

  • I just got word that my signed copy of “Island” had been shipped. I can’t wait to hold it in my hands!!!


  • hey pete.

    good suggestions… and yes this is all in the pipeline, but needs some careful design considerations first…


  • Ashe,

    I saw that picture on the wall of David’s Loft first. I had stayed long in front of that picture.
    Her eyes and face expression made me heartbreakeing… I don’t know why.. I never have seen that sad eyes of children… very emotional shot…Thank you so much for sharing…

    oh! thank you sometime blog fan..:)))
    Patricia. Thank you very much! I hope you very enjoying my book… :)))

  • Ben, you may be missing a concept of Burn. This behaves just as much like a photographic community as it is ‘another’ place to show work. If it were just another place to show work… it would just… get it? And if we kept the dialogue in the dialogue thread, then it would be even less than a blog.

    people are becoming aware of each other here, discovering each other’s attitudes towards photographic ‘things’, not just opinions on a single image,… i thought that seemed pretty obvious and maybe by design of the promoter? And i’m sorry that hearing these ‘things’ may just seem too obvious for you to care about Ben, but it’s certain these things are far too difficult for you to explain for the benefit of others to understand better.

    And Ben, how do you know that the transparency of conversations that are taking place here about anything photographic are ‘Not’ paving the way for off-line dialogue in e-mails, calls, and meet-ups? How do you know those extensions of team work would still take place if people didn’t get to know each other in a lounge atmosphere like this?

    i find your position on this aspect of Burn most ironic Ben, because in another world, but a world of equal spirit, you seem to revel in rants over everything photographic, and you’re no stranger to both participating and instigating webisodes, no Ben?, pot or kettle?

    i’d just relax Ben, if there’s effort that’s taking place anywhere that you don’t think fits your philosophy, then just take a chill pill, and do as you personally wish to do; which is send out those appreciation e-mails and only chat in the dialogue section, that might be better for everyone actually based on your grumpy-smurf philosophy. But there’s no harm to you if those other things take place while you stick to doing what you feel is right for you to do, no?


  • joe

    maybe next time you choose to call me a “grumpy smurf”, perhaps you could do it in an “appreciation email” or as part of some other “offline dialogue”.

    just a thought…

    bye bye…


  • I don’t understand this photo, and I don’t understand why it is showed in the “selected photographs” section.
    I’d like to learn more about photos, so two or three lines explaining what you find interesting in it could be useful. Thanks.

  • David

    How many stories you have submitted right now? There are many? I would like sent short essay but maybe you have stories for a half year forward?
    How your beach house? After move in or it will be summer house?

  • Giovanni, what is that you do not understand? What do you expect a selected photograph to be? Why does this one not fit into that scheme, for you? Giving these answers perhaps is more usefull than an explanation of the photographer or the curator about what we should see?

    I’ve read Balthus above.. very fitting, goes well with the mixed feelings I have about the artist..

  • flickr? you mean the place where every single picture is “fantastic” art? something similar to here, everything is “great” “amazing” and so on.

  • Ah bennybedlam – when you want to play with the big boys you’d best wear your long pants mate.


    Ashe, I felt the emotion of this image. This little girl seems so very old beyond her years – it’s heartbreakingly sweet. Well done.

  • first off Ben, i love Grumpy Smurf, next time i see you i’m putting you on the phone with my mum and she’ll tell you it’s the only Smurf i own. i honestly can’t believe that would surprise you Ben.

    second, sorry my view is exactly the opposite of yours Ben, but maybe my view is wrong? you shared your view, i shared my own based on your view. By keeping these views in the open-air it makes them easy for people to challenge or offer different views of what ever it is that’s taking shape here or whatever changes might be more appealing to take place here.



  • Ben, I agree that there should be no comments on the featured work, so it actually feels like featured work and not work in progress. Discussions could take place elsewhere or be an edited version of questions and answers sent to the photographer after the image is published. Something like, a) image is uploaded, b) people send comments during 24hours, c) photographer comments on them and they feature along the image or essay. Fast online commenting could go somewhere where all the “this in flickr is better” or the “I just love this photograph” could appear without hampering the feature.

  • Lovely photograph Ashe; it has a timeless quality: it could have been taken at any time during photography’s history. Mary Jane is a wonderful subject for you. Thanks for the link to Ashe’s website Joe.

    After reading that you attended a DAH workshop Ashe, I am interested to know the influence it had on your work. Did you already have the “look” that your photographs display on your website? Has your subject matter altered due to your participation?

    Thank you for the photograph.

    Mike R.

  • nice feel and mood, but the VioleTTe is too much for me.

  • I think the photograph is a fine achievement. Seems to me that the above photograph was not just seen, rather it was felt.

    I feel it.

    She was in my mind as I slept last night. I’m sure she met my youngsters there. I hope they played and laughed together.

    As I look again at this silent picture I wonder what she sounds like. I would so like to hear her giggle.

    Just one time. I would fix it in my memory.

    Little people are so lovely.

  • Joe,

    good words man, this sort of level of writing is missed over at HCSP but its good you have an outlet here, it gives us an opportunity to read your words. I dont know how much I agree with you or Ben about comments, I think though a middle ground where some sort of moderation to get rid of the bickering and leave purely photographic discussion would be a good step. Im sure the featured photographer must feel atleast a bit slighted when instead of discussion about the work there is a flame war going on.

    As far as Mr.Soso, I could point you to several groups on flickr, which are highly moderated and which have a very high level of work. I think you would be very very surprised at what people are doing over there, and how they are using flickr to create loose colectives that feed off each other. Theres lots of stellar work there but you must look for it.

  • Ashe, why is this girl’s face violet? Was it too difficult to set the proper white balance? Why did You do this? I don’t understand.


  • joni i suggested the exact same thing in an email to DAH about an hour ago.

  • kerry it’s -5 in london i am wearing long pants AND thermals.

  • What you mean “the proper white balance” I do not understand.

  • Hm, interesting photo. I’m finding it hard to think of other adjectives immediately, but the image is certainly thought-provoking.

    Prior to reading some of the comments here, I did also think that it would be useful to have a few words from David about why images are selected, but considering this more, I think it’s best kept this way. It’s better for readers to create their own views and opinions on the image rather than be influenced by David, and it’s probably more useful for the readers to leave comments relating to these views, as opposed to the views of the selector. So yes, please keep it this way!

    Ashe – like others here, I’m also curious about the colours in this picture. Were these intentional? Be honest ; )


  • Hm, interesting photo. I’m finding it hard to think of other adjectives immediately, but the image is certainly thought-provoking.

    Prior to reading some of the comments here, I did also think that it would be useful to have a few words from David about why images are selected, but considering this more, I think it’s best kept this way. It’s better for readers to create their own views and opinions on the image rather than be influenced by David, and it’s probably more useful for the readers to leave comments relating to these views, as opposed to the views of the selector. So yes, please keep it this way!

    Ashe – like others here, I’m also curious about the colours in this picture. Were these intentional? Be honest.. ; )


  • Well there’s obvious color shift to magenta, like if the green channel is darkened.

    Edit: I have download the picture, and there’s this red channel (masked then darkened background) and the green channel (heavily darkened). It’s all done on purpose, sure, but I just don’t get it.

  • Is not the purpose of burnmagazine to celebrate the language of photography as spoken by its various practitioners? Let’s leave the technical deconstruction to other platforms, shall we?

  • But that’s exactly my question! Why did she changed colors? What is the meaning of that? What did she wanted us to see? What kind of expression is that? What is the purpose of such expression?

    Right now I am the huge question mark. “Technical deconstruction” is made in reply to Marcin Luczkowski’s question.

  • Zeljko

    My reply was in half ironical in half general. because there is not exist something like “proper white balance”. In photography exist needs only.

  • that means that the skin would have normal skin tones, with a well sett WB, not violet ones…

    and the white of the eyes would be white, not something else…

    do you understand? ;)

  • the longer I look the less I like the death eyes…

  • Zeljko, i admire your forensic assessment of this image, CSI is my favourite thing to follow after photography, and i feel like i just met photography’s own David Hodges ;-)

    and before i get into this, i absolutely positively think we, as photographers, need to understand better the mechanics and the dynamics of any image. Personally, i’m glad you think this way Zeljko, and we should all acknowledge your intentions are noble.

    i would say that this image’s colour shift looks loads more pronounced on my PC monitor via I.E. verses my Mac monitor via Safari, i supposed that just means it’s more ‘pronounced’, nothing more to draw from that except if we decide to only enjoy photographs via monitors or only show them via monitors, that this variation will surely exist and should be a bit of a consideration.

    as far as the colour shift, or any post processing for that matter, raising questions about that effort is ‘sssooooo last year Hodges… I mean sooo yesterday Zeljko ;-) just teasing a bit there, but have we not started to re-think intent with regards to result quite a bit lately?

    So, is the question:

    ‘why does this image not better render the temperature of light captured?’,

    or is the question:

    ‘why did the artist attempt to re-render reality in such a cold and surreal way?

    i’ve been frustrated/fascinated by that question in the past too, now i sorta think… (think if i’m wearing my photographers hat), i sorta think, ‘what was the artist’s intent for a target audience and did they succeed?’ but not an audience of photographers, but of pure spectators?

    i don’t need to tell you what that result will get you, go show this image to a couple of your non-photographer friends and ask them if it’s an appealing image.. One might tell you what someone told me: ‘it’s a cold impression for such a warm looking child’, and i could see the image unnerved him a bit. that for me seems like psychological-contrast and in my opinion maybe much more effective than a slider with the name ‘contrast’ above it, but that’s just me.

    something tells me the sooner we kill the concept of a photographer being the judge and jury regarding the merit of an image, the better we will understand our audience.. i mean isn’t this the first thing they teach you in any communication class… Know Your Audience! :-)

  • Most boring critique ever. I wonder how you handle galleries where you cant download things to check channels in photoshop.

  • Oh my! What such a big mistake I made with this photo! She have red skin!

    should I delated this photo, or use a lot of photoshop?
    This is primary shool?

    uggghhhh… ok, I apologize.

  • Joe, with your last paragraph, do you mean we (as photographers) should adapt to the audience?

    Sorry, but English isn’t my first language, just want to make sure to understand what you’re saying.

  • This is all such bullshit! It’s in the eyes….get over it…get your camera and get on with it!

  • Is photography not classed as a technical skill? Why should technical aspects be deemed irrelevant here?

  • Interesting thread, as usual. A little heavy on “personalities”, but I’m sure that will fade.

    I’m replying here because “cold” caught my eye in Joe’s comment, and I wanted to say that I don’t find the image to be cold at all. Surreal, certainly, but electrically so (and not in the “electric blue” sense): the look, and also the colour palette, seems charged with some emotional quality; and that feeling of a charge prevents me from attaching “cold” to any description of it I’d feel comfortable making. It looks like a still from a film, in a way, a frozen moment from something larger (all photographs are frozen, but only a few manage to suggest temporal movement on either side of themselves, before and after), the look hinting at a story much more interesting, in a way, than the photograph itself (and that is a compliment, truly). There is also something reminiscent of Autochromes in the way the colour on the face layers on top of the colours in the rest of the frame, the purple glowing, a little (in my head, but there nonetheless), bleeding out.

    A lost moment from a turn of the century psychological thriller. Or just a kid photographed in the garden of house most of us won’t ever visit. Either way, it is interesting, and the strongest image I’ve seen here to date.

  • Ha. I miss Flickr’s “edit” button:

    “… a kid [or “child”! I was always told “kid” was terribly slangy, and it does feel wrong attached to a discussion of this] photographed in the garden of *a* house…”

  • Eva, of course that question leads us to a circular reference if you’re in a place like Burn, a place where the entire audience is made up of a highly critical, and at times entirely too cerebral bunch of photographers (guilty as charged)… or if your talking about our friends in life that have no clue that blue in white-balance-speak is cold by connotation.

    so let’s go real-world for a second. I once asked a pretty successful wedding photographer Mark Cleghorn how he felt that his customers often picked images for their albums that he felt were not his best images?, how he felt about the fact that the images that the magazines picked up might not be the same images that his customers selected?

    i’m not going to tell you what he said, because i don’t think it’s fair to put anything like that on the web, but safe to say the customer’s images and the magazine images were not always the same, what does that tell you?

    actually, i’d love to hear Chris Bickford’s ideas on this topic since he clearly pleases all three audiences. Chris, are they mutually exclusive? What’s it like trying to please three masters Chris? Probably a topic for another time actually.

    so is your audience photographers who think ‘wow’, that’s a medium format film capture?, or magazines photo editors that think about ‘clean images’ as David Bowen describes, and of a certain file size and somthing that echos a clean product image?, or is it humans that haven’t a clue why they like something, but they know it haunts them or it warms them, or other things.

    These audiences can each have very very very different tastes don’t you think?

  • I agree that we should be celebrating “the language of photography as spoken by its various practitioners”, but also feel that nothing should be left for “other platforms”, as a rule: everyone has a different way of approaching a language, whether visual or spoken. You can productively critique poetry by looking at the mechanics of a sentence, or of a verse, or even of one word placed next to another; and you can equally productively critique poetry by looking at the feelings and responses the performance of it generates in a listener. You can even, if you really want to, break a poem apart by initially going straight at what you believe the poet was thinking about producing, his intention, when he put the words down on paper. All seem valid, to me, so yes, lets be inclusive.

  • A very absorbing image. I love the way it looks like its a screen grab from a home video or tv. It makes the whole image seem so much more initmate and personal. The child’s expression is fantastic and almost Mona Lisa like in its appearance that makes it so intriguing. Something very different and challenging but full of emotion and i really would like to know a bit more about the methods used either PP or capture which gave the image that uinque feel.


  • What I connect to here is twofold..what I see as a reference/ reflection on to Carroll’s Alice Liddell, and the dreamlike quality, and for that I accept the surface/tone of the image..but on my monitor it almost looks as if it were taken from a tv screen or a still stopped on a monitor rephotographed..maybe that was intentional, to give it a sense of distance or fantasy?

  • funny, Peter C..simultaneous posting echoing a similar thought..I think as an intentional device for this image the method of capture works..but if it is incidental, I think it would detract from the work as it looks like the image is degraded as far as surface goes..

  • I just wanted to come back because this seemed a bit harsh upon reflection. What for me catches my attanetion is almost never technical correctness, such as white balance. I mean its useful to a degree to get the right WB, but its such a trivial detail when set against something more important. This picture isnt a studio photograph, paid to be done correctly. Some of the most boring boring photography is done correctly, WB and all just right.

  • Joe, thank you for your time and effort to share your opinion. I didn’t want to judge the quality of this photograph in any way. I just asked the question, and it’s not technically oriented. I needed to know why is Ashe changed colors in terms of visual message. And your answer is satisfactory. And gave me smiles.

    Knowing that, i will now ask another question, express my opinion, and maybe learn something more.

    Is artist’s attitude more important than his/her work?

    I like photographs that asks questions, but here, my first questions is about colors, and not about child’s melancholic look, which makes her older than she actually is. I would like to ask myself why is that girl looking that way. What is that she’s looking at? Instead, first I had to fight with this surreal appearance. Artist made me do it. So, I conclude that Ashe’s feeling about the girl is more important to her than the image of the girl herself. It seems pretentious to me, that artist wanted us to think about her attitude rather than about the image. It’s probably only me, and the general audience (non-photographers) may find this appropriate regarding artist’s expression, but I am more in documentary photography than anything else, and will never understand such need for manipulation of reality.
    Hear Brooks Jensen of Lenswork talking about “photographs that yell”.

  • Marcin, there is no need that I like what you like, or: you have to like what I like, no problem… ;)

    what do you mean with primary shool?

    you have to delete nothing, somebody told you to delete something?

  • Hi David,

    i have a meeting in London on Wednesday the 14th, but if you’re keen to meet up while you’re across i could fly in on Tuesday.

    if that sounds appealing please fire me off an e-mail to jncolligan at statestreet dot com and we can fix a time and place for a chat. Hopefully we can raise Ben, Hin Chua ( ) and David Solomons ( ); basically some of London’s best talent ;-)


  • Thanks so much for posting this link to Brook’s reflections on photos that yell. I very much respect him as an editor/essayist and resonated greatly with the feelings he was expressing in that podcast.

    That being said, I do not feel Ashe’s portrait of Mary Jane in the garden is “yelling” for my attention. If anything, I find it to be a subtle, serious, silent work of art that almost wants to hide from view. Now maybe it’s my monitor. I use a MacBook Pro laptop and the colors I see are not over the top at all. Yes, there is a violet cast, but no more than what one might normally capture at dusk in a garden.

    As is becoming th norm here on Burn, I am learning as much from the discussion as from the selected photograph. Thanks to all…


  • hi folks,

    I really like the portrait. I can’t quite decide if she looks sad or if She’s lost in her own world, I think I like the latter. I wonder where she is? For me this picture does what all really good pictures should do; it doesn’t lay it all on a plate, it allows the viewer to enter into the picture, if that makes sense. There’s room for exploration and interpretation. We can learn about ourselves as well as about the subject and the photographer by looking at it.



  • Jason, exactly..
    The picture is more “open”,
    than “closed”…
    I love it too..

  • Hmmm, yes, agreed about the very very very different tastes. But that’s not really what I was asking. Do you think that you, as a photographer, should adapt to taste? I admit that doing what one is doing because he believes in it, wants to get his point of view through the way HE want and sees it takes a very high level of skill and know-how.. so should one work towards becoming a better photographer or just go with the flow? Or, regarding photography and, in this case, burn, dig deeper, ask questions, look behind, interact, question, or just accept what one is fed?

    Don’t need an answer ;)

  • I agree. I LOVE some of the other work in this series but this is not my favorite.
    Perhaps the violet is what is causing others to like it so much….the painterly look?

  • ironcially i’d like to share with you a personal experience with what you’re asking Eva, i’ll send you an e-mail so i don’t take up so much blog real-estate :-)

  • Hi David,

    i have a meeting in London on Wednesday the 14th, but if you’re keen to meet up while you’re across i could fly in on Tuesday.

    if that sounds appealing please fire me off an e-mail to jncolligan at statestreet dot com and we can fix a time and place for a chat.

    I also chatted with Ben and David Solomons (another person I’d like you to meet) they are both free Tuesday night.


  • At first I thought it wasn’t a special picture, but then I figured out what my first impression really was. It was spooky. How can a child that young look like an old woman with a bad hangover?

  • for the last 3 days i have been gathering, reading the comments, finalizing the last words for bones (not for here), and swallowing all these words here….i am tilting….

    on monday night, i took my 14 year old son to see the Wrestler, as my wife was meeting with a new gallery to talk about her work….i left the theatre re-remembering, as my son and i spoke about the film, about a childhood memory of my own, when my mom was sad and lost and had carted my brothers and me off to Ocean city, one fog-tongued saturday, damp in the late october, a plane’s wing sticking out of the dissolving waves like excalibre, 30 minutes after it had crashed in the fog, my brothers and I in tow behind my mom as she leads us past the plane, along the crooked boardwalks, the open window in the casino spit-filled with loss….and i wondered what my son was thinking about to as he swiveled his head while listening….

    all these comments…my own guilt riding like a bronco now upon my lower spine at also having written so much….and i begin to wonder at all that scattered now, all the digging and excavation, all the twiddle-dee and dipped-down-dumb…

    leaving the theatre with my son, the cold night warmed by his words, i remembered that october fog in ocean city and how much this film now has steeped inside me for 3 days, i made a wrong turn in all that i’ve written….

    i shall not do that again…sometimes conversation becomes food sometimes it becomes just noise…i’ve been noisy and it seems very empty now….the photographs are what i need, those things which have defined my life with a hunger that cannot be satiated and all these words divest me, crack open the divide that separates….i dont want to talk about photographs anymore…let them remain for those who wish, instead, i want to get back to squandering my life in the only way i know how:

    by carving up words of memory
    by carving up photos of memory….

    usually it takes my wife to remind me of how far akilter i row, this time it was a movie and my son’s questions…

    running to pitch and pack upon light

  • A simple vintage style, gives me a feeling of remembrance which Is warm and cozy.

    Tells a story beneath those sad eyes…

    Like the reasons why DAH choose it, BTW Glad to see you are still kicking David!

    Regards and congratulations Ashe I enjoy your work

  • Seems as though the film hit you hard. It hasn’t opened here yet. I can’t wait to see it.
    I loved Mickey (as an actor) from the moment I first saw him on screen. So happy for him.

    BTW, Slumdog Millionaire is also not to be missed.

  • I’ve loved watching Mickey Rourke ever since Rumble Fish. And that head-butt scene in Angle Heart is one of the finest moments ever committed to celluloid.

    I’m looking forward to seeing The Wrestler.

  • Hello All,

    I’m incredibly overwhelmed at the response to this photo. I’ve been in transit from NYC to Prague, so this is the first moment I’ve had to check the site- I’m glad of it, as the time has given way to great discussion! Many thanks for both your compliments and your criticisms- I appreciate and learn from them both. I’ll try to respond to a few comments specifically, but I prefer not to say too much about it. While I learn a great deal from reading your responses, talking about photography is not really my forte. I always come out sounding like a hippie- “I love life and I want to remember everything!” etc. People seem to take my work less seriously when I say I do it for fun, so I just try to stay out of it and let them judge the work on its own merit, whatever that may be. I’ve said what I wanted to say through my medium of choice. However you receive it is up to you. I like to take photos, and I’ll continue to do so, even if nothing ever comes of it. However, if I do want to make a career out of it (and I do, very much) talking about my photos is necessary I suppose.

    SO, about the colour balance: I took this shot at dusk with a digital camera. I’m used to working with film, but for the sake of time during the workshop I switched for this assignment. (Thanks to Spencer, for loaning me his spare 5D!) I’m rather pre-intermediate with photoshop- I prefer to limit my post production to as little as possible, so I’m not an expert. I just tried to make the shot look like the moment I remembered. I have the most trouble with saving images for upload so they look the same on the web as they do in PS. While it turned up perhaps slightly saturated, that was the colour of the light- at least how I remember it. I would be interested, however, to learn how to save my files so that people can’t download and dissect them! I must say, that makes me feel rather violated. That, and I’ve always found that a little mystery is always more alluring than full disclosure. In fact, I’ve already said much too much!

    I would like to address one last comment of interest to me. Zeljko said:

    I conclude that Ashe’s feeling about the girl is more important to her than the image of the girl herself. It seems pretentious to me, that artist wanted us to think about her attitude rather than about the image. It’s probably only me, and the general audience (non-photographers) may find this appropriate regarding artist’s expression, but I am more in documentary photography than anything else, and will never understand such need for manipulation of reality.

    I think this is a truly interesting point, and it’s something I’m exploring in my work now- the idea of ‘attitude’ or perception versus “reality.” I consider myself a documentary photographer as well- I document actual moments that are occurring in life. But yes, the moments I choose to document speak a great deal as to who I am and how I perceive things- perhaps more than I’d ever say about myself. I wouldn’t have it any other way. The only difference between you behind a camera and me behind a camera is you and me. We could stand in the same spot, with the same equipment and take completely different photos, and that’s what makes photography great- the variations possible within such small parameters are infinite! ALL DEPENDING ON THE PHOTOGRAPHER. You would’ve taken this photograph with the “correct white balance,” but Darlin, your photo ain’t up here, is it? … yet! ;) I’m sure the subjects and moments you choose to capture betray a great deal more about you than you think.

    Mike R. asked me what I took from David during the workshop. The thing that struck me most and has altered my attitudes and approach towards my career is this- he said that he isn’t able to shoot whatever he likes because he shoots for Magnum and National Geographic. He was able to shoot for Magnum and National Geographic because he has ALWAYS shot what he loves. When he said that, it was as though I was suddenly released from the pressure to fit into the mold, to follow a certain path to success. The great ones have always beaten their own paths. I can to- or at least have a great time trying!

    Okay- enough for now. Thanks again, y’all. As someone very new to this game (and stumbling down her own path) your comments are invaluable!


  • I would like to apologize for analyzing Your picture, Ashe. I’ve did it because I misunderstood the other member’s question, and was trying to explain what I’ve meant by “proper white balance”.

    But let’s move on. You’ve said:

    “The moments I choose to document speak a great deal as to who I am and how I perceive things”

    That’s right, but I didn’t questioning your moment of choice. The moment is great! Basically it is a great portrait!

    I have submitted one photograph today, hopefully David will publish it, and I will be glad to discuss it with You. And one more thing… from now on, You are my Darling!

  • Hi Honey!

    Just got back, and it’s much too cold for me!
    I did bring my rollerskates, and as soon as the snow melts
    I’ll be searching for some smooth pavement!
    I’m very interested to see any shots you got that night at the loft-
    YOU TOO, DAVID! (Get those letters out?)


  • “””panos skoulidas
    January 6, 2009 at 4:50 pm

    mr.soso & ben,
    also agree…
    For your taste or style of
    portraiture.. please visit
    Don’t waste your precious time
    getting “BURNed” over here..

    I call this a typical “group” behaving, somebody who does not belong to the “we” feeling of the group comments, at the moment he writes something critical somebody jumps out and tells him that is he is a idiot and he should leave!

    why you dont jump at people who write these empty comments like “fantastic picture again”?


    just had a look at your portfolio – especially Morocco! Was this all shot in Fes?

    In 1989, I was still a schoolkid, I got the chance to travel through Morocco by train for several weeks with an older friend. I was not into photography back then but I did start taking some shots with a little camera I borrowed – it was just irrisistible!! I could not NOT shoot. It was so beautiful, alien, mysthique … So incredible that I feared I missed most. I needed a photo to be able to go back to a specific situation to have a look at it again, to appreciate it once more. Most of the times I took photographs hidden from the hip, as people back then really did not appreciate being on photographs. I felt a little bad about it and … yeah … really tried not to photograph any faces, because I felt I was doing this against their wish … :))
    Fate had it that almost all of the films got lost anyway. Few frames left, mostly from Essauira. Amazing place back then (do not know how it is now) have you been there?

    I know a guy here, almost a friend, an artist cook, who is from Morocco. His Grandma still lives in the mountains with the rest of her family … no electricity … but very happily. My boyfriend and I are trying to convince this young man to take us around there. Hope it works out. He is not so very interested, because he sais he travels to Morocco every year and would rather see other countries. So we are trying to arrange to go with him the next time he is over to visit his family.

    Wish us luck! I am curious to see how everything changed. Or at least partially changed. Guess I’d stay a little longer to do once again this train route I did 20 years ago. But this time with camera!!!

  • Oh and by the way. I see what you meant with your original comment (you posted it twice ?!) and I see why it appears like this to you but believe me it is not this way.

    Firstly there is no “in” or “out” in this group. It really fluctuates a lot. Basically if you consider yourself as being a part of it, then you are a part of it. But by talking about not being a part … well … then you yourself kind of put it this way. So just do not bother so much with who is part or not. I had never before heard of Sean Gallangher, the winner of the first EPF grant, before he was presented as a winner. Maybe he had written a couple of times before I was around … So what? He was out there shooting, he did not have time or the possibility to participate. Writing in blogs takes up quite a lot of time so people sometimes disappear for a while. New people appear. It flows. That is just fine.

    I guess people here are a little upset when they read posts that are … how shall I put it? Well I was not here regularly during the last weeks but I read some comments where I had the impression the writer was really expecting some kind of hostility from the beginning, so he/she wrote something that was in a way already a response to this expected hostility which then … well …
    It turns out to be self fulfilling prophecy. :))))

    But if you go back in the archives, you will see unknown people dropping in all the time. Mostly in a very friendly and curious way. Some will feel more comfortable here and some less. That is normal and ones own responsibility to cope with.

    And speaking of “friendly” or “overly friendly” … you obviously have not witnessed some of the major … Ähm … fights going on here. More than once I thought that we had reached the end of the road. But it always went on. Most of the times because David just has this very appeasing way. He can smile when others shout out in anger and all of the sudden you see how childish everything was and then you make a group hug and … walk on. Like in a family. And that is one of the reasons the association with “family” keeps on comming up. Because of the fights and the making-up. I imagine it would look funny for me too, if I sumbled into this place without knowing about it. But as I have witnessed this for a while already, I know it is more a hippie family than anything where you need a membership card or so.

    Actually the only one who can say that you are “not in” is you yourself… Otherwise they would have thrown me out long ago :))) I am bloddy beginner in photography and you notice it when I write. So … I am accepted here … and if I write bullshit … nobody answers. Fair enough. Like when people write something “empty”, as you have said, just ignore it. Do not bother about it. There is no one reading proof here and no one editing in the back. Maybe one day a person just says “WOW!” and the next day he/she might find the words to explain why. Or maybe not.

    The worst thing is to be ignored – like Joe put it so nicely in one of his comments. So … yeah … to ignore someone might teach them to try to do better in a more powerful way than to write a negative comment. My 2 cents.

    So I hope you stay. And let’s talk about Morocco some day, yeah?! I’d be happy to hear some of your stories!


    you posted this twice. I took the liberty to answer to your reply-comment above :))))


  • hello Lassal,

    Casablanca, Marrakech, Rabat, are modern citys… but the country side….wow!

    do it! Morokko is still “beautiful, alien, mysthique” Morokko is wonderful… I have been there 4 times, always with a van, driving around, north, south, west, east, sea, mountains, valles, citys, villages….
    the atlas is the most amazing thing, there you can drive around for days without seeing any civilization, look careful where you go, no gasoline stations, no shops ;)

    yes, it is difficult to photograph people in Morocco, it needs time to connect to people, no machine gun photography possible in the streets, the best is to have time, get to know people, once your in, then
    your able to take pictures. I even had the chance to photograph woman washing each other there hair and then cutting each other their hair.

    I dont think that the country side has changed a lot since you have been there, maybe they have better streets, some villages may have electricity now, but life in these mountain villages is very basic, for us
    modern people maybe “romantic”. look at these three pictures, number: 18, 19, 22 these are taken in the atlas, far from anything what reminds of civilization.

    drive to the Rif from Chefchauen to Ketama, stop in the small villages, thats like wild west, only men around who want to sell you dope, they bother you every single step you do … mountains, only men, old cars falling apart, but still driving, following you, marihuana plants all over the place, many people will tell you: dont go there, it is dangerous…
    these people are farmers, picture: 30, the plant dope and ant to sell it, thats how they make their living, normal that they try to sell you their stuff.

    also stop by at Fez, the medina of Fez will leave you with the mouth open for some weeks….

    and when you arrive with a local, then all doors are open, so go for it. ;)

    regards Stefan

  • there was some accident when I posted, first I saw nothing, then suddenly two posts. first reply above…

  • Lassal, one sentence was not finished:

    I dont think that the country side has changed a lot since you have been there, maybe they have better streets, some villages may have electricity now, but life in these mountain villages is very basic, for us
    modern people maybe “romantic”. look at these three pictures, number: 18, 19, 22 these are taken in the atlas, far from anything what reminds of civilization.
    people having a basic country side life, living with and from animals, seeps, olive trees, almond trees. stone houses, dirt floor, open fireplace, no bathrooms, many children, water from the well some km away.

  • Yeah, it has happened to me too… We are still not used to handle this new site :) And maybe the site is not used to us yet eihter … :))

    …. wow, now I do not know what to say besides that this sounds absolutely amazing!! Did you drive there with an onw van (like people for example like to do when going to Iceland), or did you rent one there? I saw that in Tanger you could get practically everything for such a trip – although you had to be quite careful.

    You are from Munique, aren’t you? Denn das wäre großartig! Muss demnächst für mein Fotoprojekt dorthin und dann würde ich Dich auf einen marrokanischen Kaffee entführen!

    Muss sagen … jetzt habe ich Fernweh.
    Morocco was one of the most interesting places I have ever been to. A most amazing combination between old and new, tradition and modernism, creativity!!! You could get everything you wanted made out of old truck tires!! It smelled terribly but it was absolutely incredible.
    I am glad to hear that not all has changed.

    Thanks for your so very detailed description – seems to me that you are a great fan of the country too … I will check your photographs again!

  • “A most amazing combination between old and new, tradition and modernism, creativity!!! You could get everything you wanted made out of old truck tires!! It smelled terribly but it was absolutely incredible.”


    we went with our on van, boat from Ibiza (I live on Ibiza) to Valencia, then 750km to Algeciras, from there boat to Ceuta, passing 4-5 times the super security boarder to Morocco.. no! wait to get in it is easier, coming back to europe they control you 4-5 times…something like the former inner german border! dogs and many policeman..

    you know how we meet our best friend in the mountains… we have been sleeping in then van, in the night one of the curtain lets it place and the window was open, in the morning there was a man close in front of our window ;) sitting on his donkey… ;)! situations like this you get every day! ;)

    his children:

    we can also talk through skype if you want to know more.. regards Stefan

  • Hi Eva.
    I think “a selected photograph” should be an outstanding photo, and here I see only a “slightly out of focus” photo.
    So I’d like to understand why Mr. Harvey has chosen this photo. That’ all!


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