I liked the place, the Boathouse
Cafe in Central Park, and I wanted to do something with it," says
Ted Hardin. But he realized that one photograph couldn't capture
the Cafe's ambiance. So with an Olympus Stylus, and on Kodacolor
100 film, Hardin, a New York City-based magazine photographer, took
a bunch of photos and started experimenting with the processed machine
prints. "I put them together and liked what I saw," he says.
"Then I went back and took more photos, pasted them down, saw
where I needed more, and just kept on going."
When Hardin says "pasted them down," he means literally
that. He doesn't use a computer; the assembly is done with scissors,
rubber cement, and art board.
From a rather small composite, the Central Park image grew over a period
of months to include pictures taken at other locations. "In the
foreground you see four people and a dog--they were on Fifth Avenue
at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and were originally going to be in
another montage I was doing. But they seemed to fit the need for a foreground,
and the light was striking them the correct way--that's something
I had to be careful about when matching things up." Not only were
people moved to Central Park, so was the dove seen near the center of
the image. It was photographed outside Hardin's apartment window.
Once it was completed, Hardin hung his 15x15" creation on the
wall, set up a DynaLite on either side, and with a Hasselblad 500C fitted
with an 80mm f/2.8 Zeiss Planar, copied the work onto Fujichrome 100
Of his angular construct, Hardin says, "Everything I used seemed
to go with the quirkiness of the place. By not having straight edges
or borders, my composite captures the energy of the Boathouse Cafe--it
just goes where it goes."