Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Foote fetish

So I've been working on the project described by this article non-stop the past few weeks. And it's the first time that I've been so proud of / excited about a day-job project...

Now, don't get the wrong idea. I take pride in ONLY working-for-money for organizations whose work I believe in. And I've often felt a sense of accomplishment at work when a project is complete.

But this is different...

I think my zip-zippy-ness can be attributed to the fact that as someone interested in Winnipeg's history generally - and as a poet who worked specifically on a poetry/photography project focused on Winnipeg derelict buildings - I've spent a lot of time with L.B. Foote's photos over the years.

Since that time, my interest in photography has grown, though I have very little interest in anything NOT found in the woods.

And then there's the fact that M's a news photographer, that he shoots many of the same things that Foote would have shot.

On a day to day basis, I hear M's stories about the subjects who grumbled about having their pictures taken, about the flood waters he's waded through, the scrums he's wedged himself into. I've washed the smoke out of his clothes after he's spent the morning at a fire and tried to spot him on the sidelines of televised football games.

So let's just say I'm strangely aligned with Foote.

So the prospect of working not only on the book UMP is publishing of his pics but also on a side project to find/share new Foote photos...well, let's just say I'm over the moooon.

For those of you unaware of Foote's work, here's a bio:

Born in Newfoundland in 1873, Lewis Benjamin Foote arrived in Winnipeg in 1902, where he bought a house on Gertrude Avenue and began a career as a professional photographer. For more than 50 years, Foote’s photographs chronicled the development of the city. He was an active photographer until 1947 and died ten years later.


Brenda Schmidt said...

Exciting! Look forward to seeing what all comes of it!

Ariel Gordon said...

Me too. This pic ( is my new favourite...I esp. like that it was slipped under my door over the weekend. It was a secret mission!