As I push and push the tonal registers in my edits, I begin to notice that there is a fine area where things are still just about visible, but almost at the point of disappearing. I like to play around with that vanishing point because in doing so, I can hopefully lead the viewer into having to look again, to wonder what is there.
After all, why does everything have to be spelled out for us? Where does the need come from, for this clarity in what we produce?
Why can't things be implied, left open to interpretation? Isn't there beauty in what has been left unsaid?
Not knowing can be thrilling, but above all, more interesting to me than an answer, because up until the answer is given, anything is possible. Because when the answer is revealed, any mystique that was present, instantly vanishes.
The central highlands of Iceland is a space where boundaries become unclear. It's attraction for me is that often times, things aren't spelt out. Definition isn't always high on the agenda, and it's a place where gradual variances in tone can almost be lost in plain sight. What you think you're seeing isn't there because your mind wishes to fill in the empty spaces with 'something'.
Editing images so that the tones are almost at the very edge of becoming nothing (in this case absolute white) but still retaining a hint of colour is something I find fascinating to play with.
Where the dividing line becomes hard to find, your mind goes hunting for it, for your 'must' find a division point, an anchor, something to latch on to.
I ask myself 'why is that so?' Why do we need to have boundaries defined for us? Can't they remain unsolved for us? Where does our compulsion come from, to make sense, to answer all the unsaid aspects of a picture?
So I deliberately edit with the intention of introducing snow-blindness to our view of the photographs. Not knowing where one hill begins and another ends, is the story of these photographs. The central highlands becomes a playground for messing with the viewers visual system and its need to construct, to make sense of what it is seeing.
I'd much rather watch a movie where the story is left with no conclusion, than an film where everything is spelled out and explained to me. Because the film with no proper ending has room for interpretation, for it to become whatever my thoughts make of it.
Because in the agony of not knowing what really happens at the end, we endlessly work on the problem - always looking for meaning. It's certainly a much more interesting way to conclude a film than the tired approach of having to allocate 10 minutes at the end to explaining just what we saw. That kind of film invites us to think we need answers, when instead, there is often beauty in not knowing.