Many of you that know me and read this blog, (namely Melissa), know that I am totally enamored by the photography of Jonathan Canlas. He is local of Lehi, yet renowned in the world of photography. Since I started following his blog, I have been dying to get my hands on a Holga, and have resisted the temptation every time that I have gone into Urban Outfitters for some time now. So, to my Amazon Wishlist it would go; in hopes that someday I would get one. Imagine my excitement when I opened a packeage today from Eric, my brother-in-law. He pulled it off the list and got me one for Christmas. So then today I was looking across Jon’s blog, trying to find the kind of film that he uses, I came across this gem:
Kitsch is a German term that has been used to categorize art that is considered an inferior copy of an existing style. The term is also used more loosely in referring to any art that is pretentious or in bad taste, and also commercially produced items that are considered trite or crass.
Because the word was brought into use as a response to a large amount of art in the 19th century where the aesthetic of art work was confused with a sense of exaggerated sentimentality or melodrama, kitsch is most closely associated with art that is sentimental; however, it can be used to refer to any type of art that is deficient for similar reasons—whether it tries to appear sentimental, glamorous, theatrical, or creative, kitsch is said to be a gesture imitative of the superficial appearances of art. It is often said that kitsch relies on merely repeating convention and formula, lacking the sense of creativity and originality displayed in genuine art.
Though kitsch and kitschy may be terms used to criticize, the term is sometimes used as a compliment as well, with some finding kitschy artwork to be enjoyable for its “retro” value or unintentional, ironic humor or garishness.
That is exactly what I am going for. To say that I want to be more like Jon would be an understatement. I love the style, and try to mimic it. It makes me want to be a better photographer.
So Jon, thanks for taking some kitschy photos.