10+ Tony Fouhse

by Heather on September 26, 2008

Inspiration from photo-related people. On Fridays.

In honour of Yousuf Karsh’s centenary this year, I thought we would see what’s inspiring in Ottawa these days. Tony Fouhse is an Ottawa based photographer with a penchant for tricky subjects including this slippery character (I’m watching Obama trounce McCain and feeling a little political, so here is our own PM Stephen Harper, on his way to cut some art funding no doubt):

Let’s check out Tony’s top 10.

1. August Sander

I’m a big fan of contemporary German photography. Bernd and Hilla Becher, teaching in Dusseldorf, seem to have had a profound effect on how photography in that country is developing. But even before The Dusseldorf School existed there was August Sander. His influence permeates modern photography.


The School of Photographic Arts: Ottawa opened their doors 3 years ago and immediately provided a breath of fresh air in the Ottawa photo scene.

With a “New York School” style studio, a gallery and a modern, intense approach to both traditional (i.e.: film) and digital photography the school has been graduating serious, involved photographers since it opened.

3. 8 1/2

By Fredrico Fellini. Any creative person must see bits of themselves, their doubts and their processes in this movie. Not to mention the fantastic cinematography and the score by Nino Rota.

Here’s a quote from the protagonist in that film. The character is a movie director who has built a big, expensive set but doesn’t know why, doesn’t know how to proceed, just doesn’t know:

I thought my ideas were so clear. I wanted to make an honest film. No lies whatsoever. I thought I had something so simple to say. Something useful to everybody. A film that could help bury those dead things we carry within ourselves. Instead, I’m the one without the courage to bury anything at all. When did I go wrong? I really have nothing to say, but I want to say it just the same.

4. Robert Frank’s Polaroids

Sure, everyone knows and loves The Americans. I like it too. But it’s his Polaroids that really move me. Of course I’m a sucker for art that walks that fine line between pure emotion and being just plain corny. But when I look at Frank’s Polaroids what I see are emotions I recognize.

5. PhotoshopDisasters.com

A guilty pleasure. Sort of like looking at car crashes except no one (I guess) gets hurt.

6. Jay Parkinson- Aspiring

Parkinson found aspiring Baltimore models on ModelMayhem, went to their houses and took pictures of them. Sounds simple, is simple. Why didn’t I think of that?

7. The blogs of Thomas Broening and Timothy Archibald

The reason I put these two together is because both Broening and Archibald approach blogging in a way that totally makes sense to me…..a nice mixture of commercial and personal insights. Broening being a bit more about the nuts and bolts of his work while Archibald’s posts are more wide-ranging with some very poetic family photos thrown in for good measure.

Plus, Broening has coined a word for something most photographers do: Cockrocking.

First Broening, then Archibald:

8. Time (not the magazine)

Time is my least favorite dimension. Length and width and height I can deal with, I can see them. But time confounds me. It certainly does come in handy though, along with those other 3 dimensions, if you like taking pictures.

As A. Einstein said: “The only reason for time is so that everything doesn’t happen at once.”

9. Andres Serrano: Here is a link to an interview with Serrano, where he talks about America and other stuff.

Just about everyone thinks “Piss Christ” or “Morgue” when Serrano’s name is brought up. And why not….those shots are beautiful. They make you think, too, and that can’t be a bad thing.

But he also does celebrity portraiture for magazines and a bunch of other stuff. For instance, his book “America” blew me away the first time I saw it.

10. My Point+Shoot

Sorry to get all geeky here but I really do love point and shoot cameras. I’ve shot so much of my life with this thing it’s not funny. A real pleasure, too, they are. What with their compact size, ease of use and refreshing lack of control.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

johann September 27, 2008 at 10:45 am

Hey Tony – Thanks for passing along the Jay Parkinson link I love projects like this ! Great collection.

Dan Ehrenworth October 1, 2008 at 2:28 pm

RF’s Sick of Goodbyes gets me everytime. One of my favourite images ever made! Thanks Tony.

John Hryniuk October 1, 2008 at 4:45 pm

You rock Tony ! I miss yah… hugs

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