We are delighted to publish our seventh Portrait of an Artist interview to this very special column, edited by Jennifer Bracewell. This week Jennifer has interviewed Alon Goldsmith a mobile photographer that I have long admired, like so many and it is a real pleasure to read and view this wonderful interview, take it away Jen (foreword by Joanne Carter).
(We also have a dedicated Facebook group set up for this Column too – please join us here. Jennifer regularly adds and contributes to this. In addition we have set up a Flickr Group dedicated to this column. We would like you to send all your portraiture here and we will select images for curation and showcases as well as commentary – this is the Flickr Group link).
“Alon Goldsmith is a master of iPhoneography. He’s got a super eye, harnesses light, composes excellent images and captures the moments between moments. His work is breathtaking. I remember noticing his portraiture, particularly a gorgeous portrait of one of his children, maybe a year ago. I was taken with the simplicity and sheer beauty of the image. I’m so pleased that Alon agreed to speak with me. Here’s Alon!”
What are your earliest memories of photography and/or art?
A terrifying Technicolor nightmare when I was about three, in which the Big Bad Wolf chased me over hill and dale. His intentions were anything but good, and no matter how hard I implored that I really liked him, I couldn’t change his mind about wanting to eat me. Fortunately I was aided and abetted by the Pokey Puppies, and made it unscathed to the wrong side of my mother’s bathroom door. Alas, she didn’t get the seriousness of my predicament, and even though I pounded desperately, the door remained locked. Eventually, with my tiny heart thump-thumping in my chest, I woke up. Not convinced that’s art/photography? Well here’s another.
Waking up on my 5th birthday to find the perfect gift from my cousin Gloria – a Kodak Instamatic 25. Oh what joy – shooting my first pics of Rodney Kaplan, the next-door neighbor, in his school uniform in the front garden of my house.
What have you sacrificed for your art?
Boredom, ennui and stasis.
What is it that appeals so much to you about portraiture?
The fact that it’s my next frontier. I’m rather shy by nature and find it difficult to approach strangers and ask them if I can photograph them. When I slay that dragon, there’s going to be a reckoning.
Why do you think mobile photography and portraiture work so well together?
With a camera in your pocket you’re always armed and dangerous.
Tell me about awards and recognition you’ve received
The first time is always sweet, so I have to say being featured on the App Whisperer for a Day in the Life interview was beyond exciting (read that here). Then David Hochman’s piece about my work in Forbes was a pinch-me moment. Winning runner up in the journalism category in the MPAs wasn’t horrible. Best of all? Finding out that Dale Yudelman, one of the photographers I admire the most, got turned on to Hipstamatic and iPhoneography through seeing my work.
Which of your own images are you most proud of and why?
That’s a moving target. I imagine someone has probably already said this, but I think it’s that great photo I’m going to take next Tuesday. That said, here’s a recent one that still rocks my synapses.
What have been the high points and low points of your career so far?
I’m really at the very beginning. So, no lows – only highs.
What would you say the biggest myth is about mobile photography?
That it’s not photography.
What/whose work of art would you most like to own?
Wouldn’t mind me a Sebastião Salgado.
What song would work as the soundtrack to your life?
Tomorrow Never Knows (The Beatles) (link)