Thursday, February 5, 2015

Assignment #3-Audio as inspiration for the visual

In this assignment, you will use a song by Tom Waits as your guide to making a photographic response to a very visual, audio, experience. I have selected a song from his album "Rain Dogs" for this assignment, Ninth and Hennepin. The goal of this assignment is not to literally reproduce the song as a photograph but to use the audio work as a point of departure. You can find this in iTunes or other on line sources. Here's a note that might assist you:

  • In a 1985 interview with Spin magazine, Tom states that the imagery found in this song is drawn mostly from his observations of New York, though the actual named location - Ninth Street and Hennepin Avenue - is in Minneapolis. The location "Ninth and Hennepin" understandably stuck with Waits because he was in an all-night donut shop when he was caught in the middle of a pimp war that involved live ammunition firing into his booth. Tom alludes to this with the line, "All the donuts have names like prostitutes."
  • In support of the album's lyrical themes, "Ninth and Hennepin" is presented as a place of transition, not a home or a destination of any kind. The lyric says of the song's characters: "They all started out with bad directions." The broken umbrellas symbolize failed attempts at shelter by the corner's inhabitants.
  • More symbols of travel and rootlessness found in this lyric: the smell of diesel, horses, the evening train, being lost.

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