This is probably my favorite image that I have made in a while. It came from nothingness – no plan and no end goal – and yet there it is. It has elements of graphic design, calming nature feels, and even ties to optical illusion. Not sure where this piece will fit into my work as a whole, but I know it will be one that gets printed and hung on a wall.
Sometimes when editing a photograph I realize it could use an element of time. In this piece, I wanted to represent “waves” in multiple ways. The image of ocean waves is obvious. Then I selected out circles and rotated them to make another wave, and lastly the slow changing of color creating a perceptual wave for the viewing experience.
I have been feeling like I don’t have enough time, or energy, or maybe focus to make new work at the moment. Instead, I have been digging through old images to see what I have forgotten. Tonight I had the idea to split a beach scene into layers. I looked for good images to represent the sand, ocean, and sky. I then picked three that I felt worked, cropped, and processed in black and white. The final product is a triptych that, together, has a strange balance to it.
My art photography was recently published in Frames Magazine, a fairly new yet already prestigious international quarterly printed photography book… Seven images from my Self-Portraits series (2017) were selected, along with a few short writings of mine about creativity, inspiration, and devotion to art making. I spent 18 months making strange pictures of myself in a basement studio, had a solo exhibition of the final work, and now I am so happy to see it being printed in FRAMES.
Most importantly, I am incredibly humbled to be in the same volume as some really remarkable image makers. Ami Vitale (featured on the cover) is a National Geographic photographer, writer, and filmmaker and a Nikon Ambassador. Nick Brandt, whose work I have adored for years, uses his camera to point out mankind’s negative impact on animals and the environment, and also co-founded a foundation to help protect over a million acres of land. Clément Chéroux, the Chief Curator of Photography at the Museum of Modern Art in NYC, gives an interview, along with works by Poulomi Basu, Bob Weil, Justyna Neryng, and Yi Sun.
This morning was a LITERAL dumpster fire. Seriously. Of course it gave me a good laugh at first, but this is the second large fire right outside my window in the past week. Kind of feels like a bad omen… My reaction shows I am a decent person: I saw the fire and ran outside to see if someone called 911. They did, so I immediately grabbed my telephoto lens, put it on my camera, and ran out. You can’t pass up the opportunity to photograph a dumpster fire!
Sometimes I laugh, wondering why I went through all that trouble of getting a master’s degree in photography – just to spend most of my time photographing sunsets. Seriously though. I can’t be too hard on myself. I do make a lot of art, had solo exhibitions, have been published – but I just get so much pleasure in going outside and watching sunsets. Whatever drives you, right? Maybe all these sunsets will become something bigger one day.
While working on my Self-Portraits series, I made a lot of images that never saw the light of day. Strange ideas and experiments. Five years ago, I invented goggles that turn your eyeballs into flowers. Best idea yet. Patent pending… It’s fun seeing work that I forgot, and actually liking it years later. Been doing a lot of reminiscing lately.
I see that 10 year challenge is going around again on social media, so here is an interesting one. On the left is me from ten years ago, in 2012. Ten years earlier that that, in 2002, the Scranton Lace Company closed it’s doors and the gigantic factory was abandoned. I entered the neglected building and made this self-portrait. Now ten years later, in 2022, my girl photographed me on the beach. I feel like I look the same, and feel the same – just slightly more tortured by life… Just waiting for 2032 now.
This is really just a sketch. I work with pattern, symmetry, and movement quite often, but I am working on a project that involves many different layers. This was just a test animation I made to see how I can control various layers in time. The final work is much different than this – many layers all spinning and blending into each other. Simple but I hope for it to be hypnotizing, similar to this… also, I probably won’t call it “Spinny Spin” as that is stupid.
I love experimenting with all kinds of imaging methods and processes. My father is a doctor. When I was young he would bring home his office’s powerful microscope for me to play with. It always blew my mind how things look up close… Years later I got an adapter for my camera.
I have tried everything from pond scum to my own blood. While exploring my blood, I came across this little area where cells were squeezing between air bubbles and thought – this is like some kind of biological hourglass.