I’ve taken photographs since I was 20 years old and my father gave me a Pentax SLR after he felt I'd proven myself using a Kodak Brownie. When I travel, my subject matter is often people, their faces, their activities and craft processes, and their contexts of work, including landscapes. More recently, my preferred subject matter seems to be intimate landscapes, natural abstractions, and the play of light on unstable surfaces. lAt the bottom of this page is my Artist's Statement.
My subject matter in the last few years tends to be unexpected landscapes, patterns of nature, the play of light on unstable surfaces, and textures and shadows that are usually passed by, unnoticed.
My process begins with noticing.
I look up, when walking into the Galleria parking lot after a sociable dinner, and see a tree fern, etched into a black silhouette by the backlight of the evening sky. I look down, during a spectacular Day-Glo sunset at Georgian Bay, Canada, and see mud and shallow water in puddles reflecting the glorious colors. I park in very late afternoon in Santa Cruz to go for an early supper, and in front of me are the intermingled shadows and branches of an oak tree adorning the off-yellow wall.
I am photographing not so much content as light; but light, to be “visible,” has to strike something, producing texture, shadows, shape, and color.
In fact, I sometimes say that I’m a photojournalist of the light. Like a news photojournalist, I document rather than invent events and scenes. Like a news photojournalist, I must be at the right place and time to capture what really happened. Like a news photojournalist, I do minimal editing of the photos, as I consider them to be documents rather than creations.
As a photojournalist of the light, my photos have to have subject matter (since light has to fall on something to be seen), and the subject matter is often, indeed usually, recognizable, but sometimes the resulting image is confusing. Where are you, the viewer, in relation to the scene? Where is the horizon line? Is this image upside down? Wait! Where do the reeds stop and the reflection begin? And they tend to be very quiet images, rather than things that shout to be noticed.
Not surprisingly, I am not usually attracted to iconic scenes. And I am not striving to produce Renaissance perspective with its clear horizon lines and vanishing points, its composition that defines the relationship between the viewer and the viewed and indicating that the viewer is upright and sober. I print on archival soft art paper or premium luster, and the surface as well as the image invites the viewer to melt into the scene and to dissolve the autonomous self.
The point is to capture a moment of light, something that exists without me but that I have to good fortune to witness.
The photographic images I choose to display as art to hang on walls tend to be more complex and more subtle than the ones I choose for cards, rewarding longer and more intense visual lingering. Fine arts photographic images will be on display and for sale, matted or matted and framed, at Open Studios 2015.
The meanings of the images I choose to make into cards can generally be grasped quickly, although some would, and do, sustain their interest if printed in a larger format. The cards can be displayed as mini-works of art, however, because they are beautifully printed on high quality soft-finish art paper. At Open Studios 2015 I'll again be selling 5x7 cards with envelopes, printed on archival paper, in archival-quality sleeves. To your left is a sample of some of the images I used used for last year's cards, and I will be adding more for this year.
I'll participate again this year (2015) in Open Studios of Santa Cruz County. Visitors are invited to the Barn Gallery in my backyard, where framed and matted fine arts photos will be for sale. The dates are Oct 3-4 and 17-18 from 11 am-5pm. O.S. is sponsored by the Arts Council of Santa Cruz.
I've had two solo photography shows in Puebla, Mexico - one in May 2010, the other in November 2014.
Neither of these images are clickable yet.
"Awakening to the Real."
Click on this photo to go to my FB Event page!
Open Studios is sponsored by the Arts Council of Santa Cruz. Click on their logo for info!