Today the old adage,“You only get to go around once in life” is often irrelevant, as a number of highly accomplished photographers came through a doorway into a second career. This observation led to the first of a series of questions we recently asked Ed Freeman, whose earlier incarnation was musician, arranger and producer named on some pretty famous record albums.
PS: From a successful career in the field of music, how did you move to photography?
EF: I’ve been playing instruments since age six and taking pictures since age ten. Both have been central to my life ever since, so it really wasn’t so much a move as a slight shift in emphasis.
Many photographers started out as musicians— the most famous, of course, being Ansel Adams. Some of his contemporaries considered him to be even more gifted as a concert pianist than as a photographer. Maybe it’s that both art forms require a certain innate feel for mathematics; maybe it’s something much deeper or more unexplainable than that. But the connection between the two is unmistakable.
PS: A quick glace at your book titles mistakenly reads REALITY—but look again, and it’s actually the word REALTY. Can you explain the concept, as obviously “reality” is a mindset for how you see these buildings?
EF: The names are actually Desert REALTY and Urban REALTY, but the pun and the tendency to misread the name are both very intentional. These pictures are anything but real, although they’re put forth with a kind of earnestness that might make you want to override your own disbelief or feel awkward about questioning my truthfulness.
That’s the point.
The pictures are fabrications, but I’m asking you to believe them. And I find that most people still WANT to believe them, even after they learn that they’re not real. Fascinating…