Morning Glory, v.2 – Being Dedicated & Follow Your Heart

Morning Glory, v2, Edit Bwp

Title:”Morning Glory, v.2″
Collection: “High-Key Scanography”
(c) 2007 Nawfal Nur
All Rights Reserved

“Dedicated to the real photographers of the world – to those who, with their second-hand equipment and their makeshift darkrooms, are today fighting their solitary battles with their recalcitrant medium, not for money or for glory, but because they would rather make pictures than anything else in the world. -William Mortensen, “Mortensen on the Negative”, by William Mortensen, Simon and Schuster, 1940.

I would tend to agree with Mortensen, with one addition: With almost any art form, there is no point doing it if you do not love it; and being an artist, you must face the task of fighting all the trials and tribulations that go along with being creative. Keeping that in mind, if you love what you do, then the money and glory may then follow.I found the following citation from a Steve Jobs speech, which I thought was quite appropriate for this entry:

“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.” [Source: This is the text of the Commencement address by Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple Computer and of Pixar Animation Studios, delivered on June 12, 2005.]

A Few New Selections at ImageKind!

Alien Water Photographs by Nawfal Nur


Just a quick note, and a quick mention of some new work I have posted in my ImageKind Gallery, “Alien Water”.  I decided to change things up a bit there.  At first glance, I want visitors of my gallery to see more of my diversity.  Thus, I’ve added some new water droplet photographs, as well as, some images from my Sci-Fi Landscapes Series, Math Conceptual, Cosmetics-Art, Smoke Photography, High-Key Flower and Still Life photography.  Please have a look – Thanks!

Way ‘behind the Lens’…

Honolulu Creeper, v.1

“Honolulu Creeper, v.1”
Copyright by Nawfal Nur, 2007
All Rights Reserved

Photography is the process or art of producing images of objects on sensitized surfaces by the chemical action of light or of other forms of radiant energy, as x-rays, gamma rays, or cosmic rays. (Source: Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2006).

How charming it would be if it were possible to cause these natural images to imprint themselves durable and remain fixed upon the paper! And why should it not be possible? I asked myself.” -William Henry Fox Talbot

Well, photo+graphy has come a long way since the time of when this magical thinker, W.H.F. Talbot was formulating photographic science with his paper negative. [All three pioneers, Niepce, Daguerre, and Talbot, along with Sir John Herschel—who in 1819 discovered the suitability of hyposulfite of soda, or “hypo,” as a fixing agent for sensitized paper images and who is generally credited with giving the new medium its name—deserve to share the title Inventor of Photography. Each made a vital and unique contribution to the invention of the photographic process. (Source: )]

One of the interesting things about photography is that there are many ways to create photographs, and in the case of this photo-blog entry, I have used a way to create a photograph that is way, way, way behind the lens, so far behind, that I didn’t use a camera at all to create these two photographs published here. In fact, I used my EPSON 1640SU scanner to make these images. It’s been something that I wanted to do for a really long time, but never STOPPED, to figure it out.

My subject was a very lively, fast growing Honolulu Creeper vine [Antigonon (Antigon, Antigonum) leptopus] . These are beautiful creeping vines that attract bees, wasps (and other flying insects and ants), and these plants are very lush. However, if left unchecked, these vines can get totally out of control in no time – they grow like mad! Anyway…

Even though these are not photographs in the sense of the word that most people associate with photography, they are photographs nonetheless. If photography is capturing images with light, then my scanner was the capturing device, using an “intricate system of mirrors that must continually pivot to keep the light beams aligned with a lens.” (Source: ) Now, I’m not even really sure of the technology behind a scanner, that’s why I added that citation and link (above). But, like a camera, a scanner uses a type of lens, and both use light to capture information.

The important thing in this message, and that one I want to get across, is that as a photographer, always consider other possibilities, other ways to capture an image, other angles, other light sources…in short, keep an open mind and be creative.

Honolulu Creeper, v.2

“Honolulu Creeper, v.2”
Copyright by Nawfal Nur, 2007
All Rights Reserved

Bursting with Color (2007)

Bursting with Color (2007)
“2007 Bursting with Color” (Cover)
© 2007 Nawfal Nur
All Rights Reserved


This is the cover of my 2007 Bursting with Color” calendar. The calendar contains a selection of flower, leaf and fungi photographs, all taken in Penang. These photos were shot in the outdoors, and in the studio. Some subjects were photographed with film and others with digital. Some of the scenes were photographed in the daytime and others in the nighttime.

I wanted to do something unusual regarding the names I placed on each month’s subject. I looked at each subject to determine what characteristic stood out about the image. In addition, I determined what thoughts came to my mind at first glance of the subject. With that information, I then had to determine what language to use.

I did not want to use English, nor Malay. Then, for some reason, it hit me: Why not Elvish!

J.R.R. Tolkien had devised several languages that were virtually complete: One of these lingoes was Quenya. Language and grammar for Tolkien was a matter of aesthetics and euphony, and Quenya in particular was designed from “phonaesthetic” considerations; it was intended as an “Elvenlatin”, and was phonologically based on Latin, with ingredients from Finnish and Greek.” (Original Source: Carpenter, Humphrey and Tolkien, Christopher (eds.) (1981). The Letters of J. R. R. Tolkien. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, no. 144, 25 April 1954, to Naomi Mitchison. ISBN 0-395-31555-7.)

Not being terribly familiar with the intricate details of Tolkien’s Elvish dialects, I searched the WEB and discovered Nevrast, a nice compilation of Quenya words in dictionary format.

I took my list of image characteristics and matched them to Quenya words, and that is how I named each month’s image in the “2007 Bursting with Color,” calendar.

I have a separate blog for this calendar and you can see it here. This blog highlights the images from the calendar and shares a little information about the name of each image. I also included a very, very brief history of Tolkien’s Elvish language.


ps: I’m mentioning my Calendar here in March because maybe someone still wants to buy a 2007 Calendar.

pss: Here’s a tip from someone who purchased my calendar. They said that they liked the photos so much, and the print quality was so good, that they were going to detach photos, and then have them matted and framed. Although I would prefer people to buy my prints individually, this person came up with an innovative idea. Discussing the value of buying a calendar in March may be a moot point. However, I’m sure that many people purchase calendars any time of the year because they plan to matte and frame the photographs from the calendar.