Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Roads - Mark Schacter

I initially picked up Roads by Mark Schacter with the intent of using it as an Over the Counter feature. I started leafing through and quickly changed my mind. I knew I had to sit down with the book and savour every detail of each photograph and the accompanying essays.

Schacter travelled around Canada in 2009, taking photographs across the country. His criteria-

"The connected thread was the road, the ubiquitous sign of human presence in and movement across the landscape.Everywhere, in every image, the road is a reminder of the human urge - benevolent or malignant, as the case may be - to conquer, to overcome, to withstand, to appropriate, to build, to make a mark, to communicate, to carve out territory and, above all, to get somewhere."

In our haste to 'get somewhere' we often miss what's right in front of us. Schacter has an amazing eye. I enjoyed every last one of the more than 150 photos. There were some that I recognized - it was fascinating to see a familiar intersection captured with a fresh eye. It provided a whole new look at what at been heretofore mundane. There were shots of places I plan on visiting this summer - I've seen them through Schacter's lens and can't wait to see them with my own eyes (and lens!) Many locations sent me to the Internet to look at them further.

Roads is a fascinating pictorial essay from a man "drawn to emptiness: its look and sound and feel." I truly enjoyed the book and his unique look at our country.


Pam (@iwriteinbooks) said...

Wow, this is seriously neat. I love this sort of thing. I love photo journaling and the other people compile pictures according to their own POV and interests. His quote is also fantastic. Love it!

Mark Schacter said...

Thanks for blogging about my book, "Roads". I am now at work on my next book, "Sweet Seas. A Portrait of the Great Lakes," to be published in the fall of 2012 by Fifth House