Creative collaborators Alex Webb and Rebecca Norris Webb led an intensive two-day workshop at Aperture called Finding Your Vision. The weekend workshop began with a public artist talk, where the Webbs spoke about their new book, Brooklyn: The City Within, and their emotional approaches when making selections of photographs from their past projects.
The workshop helped amateur and professional photographers alike to explore ways of seeing and connecting with their own photographs through intuition and spontaneity. On the first day, photographers introduced themselves through portfolio reviews, and the Webbs gave critiques and suggestions on how to expand everyone’s work. The Webbs encouraged participants to edit the sequence of their photographs, in order to further understand their emotional resonance and visual structure. The Webbs suggested tapping the conscious, unconscious, and subconscious when experimenting with the editing process. Later, participants played an editing game, where they had the chance to edit the sequence of a collection of Alex’s photographs. At the end of the first day, some participants embarked on a photography assignment, exploring and documenting New York City with their cameras. Other participants continued to sequence their prints, learning more about the importance of structuring images, especially for photobooks. The second day was dedicated to reviewing participant assignments. The Webbs made note of successful images and showed different ways of sequencing photographs. At the end of the day, the Webbs had an informal Q&A with participants, showing book spreads and discussing the printing and selection process in making a photobook. They gave advice about visual vocabulary, book design, photographing on assignment, being an outsider photographing another culture, and many other informative topics.
Alex and Rebecca on Instagram: @webb_norriswebb
Alex Webb has published sixteen photography books, including Aperture’s The Suffering of Light, a survey book of thirty years of his color photographs. He’s exhibited at museums worldwide including the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; the High Museum of Art, Atlanta; and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. A Magnum Photos member since 1979, his work has appeared in the New York Times Magazine, National Geographic, and other publications. He has received numerous awards including a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2007. His most recent books are Aperture’s La Calle: Photographs from Mexico and the collaboration Slant Rhymes with Rebecca Norris Webb.
Originally a poet, Rebecca Norris Webb often interweaves her text and photographs in her six books, most notably with her monograph, My Dakota—an elegy for her brother who died unexpectedly—with a solo exhibition of the work at the Cleveland Museum of Art (2015), among other venues. Her work has appeared in the New Yorker and the New York Times Magazine, and is in the collections of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston and the Cleveland Museum of Art. Rebecca is an NEA grant recipient, and she’s currently working on her eighth book, Night Calls, where she’s following the route of her 99-year-old, country doctor father’s house calls through the same rural Indiana county where they both were born.