August 23, 2016 @ 16:02 CET

Dear Ivan,

Yes, often the cinematic feeling is paramount. And I must confess it’s something I too strive for – even in my still images. And now I’m wondering. I’ve actually never been able to put my finger on it, only being able to recognise being pulled by it. Tokyo Story, The Mirror, Inception. Vastly different films, different eras, different cultures, different industries, different everything, all completely pull me in.

It feels like there’s more of a bright future in augmented and mediated realities than for virtual reality. The key is a mobile device with a person used to supplement experience. VR in opposition presumes an exit from life, entering an alternative world and using the technology as an end instead of a means. I think that might be why there’ll always be that conceptual gap. That context has to be escaped, or VR remains a too specific – yet extremely immersive – tool.

Since what seems forever I’ve had trouble “thinking about” while experiencing, and I chalk it up to the fact that I’ve always thought of myself as naive, and therefore easily pulled in. Even now still I can – and constantly do – lose myself in cinema, art, books and what not, often afterwards recalling being taken along for the ride and forgoing critical thinking. In fact, I regard being swept away as a measure of success.

Of course I know this holds no ground. But I can’t help myself. The creators of artifice tread a delicate balance between control and and chaos in order to generate that feeling, and consider all the elements in play that get us to that sweet spot. Storytelling. Structure. Narrative. Connections. Depth. Aesthetics. Timing. Relevance.

Imagining this gives me solace. And damn, I totally missed that Perseid meteor shower, even though I knew it was coming. 

#image_by_image is an ongoing conversation between photographers Ivan Sigal and Anton Kusters.
@ivansigal @antonkusters on Instagram