Road to Old House, Ohio 2013
Old Pilings, Naples, FL 2013
Esteemed juror, Blue Mitchell http://bluemitchell.com/ has chosen three images from three different series of my work to be shown at the “Forgotten” Exhibition at the A Smith Gallery http://asmithgallery.com/.
Established in May, 2010, A Smith Gallery is located in Johnson City, Texas in the Nugent Avenue Arts District. The gallery exhibits the work of both amateur and professional photographers through juried and invitational exhibitions. Amanda Smith is the Gallery Director assisted by Kevin Tully serving as Assistant Gallery Director.
Blue Mitchell is an independent publisher, curator, educator, and photographer. Based in Portland, Oregon, he has been involved with many facets of the photographic arts. Mitchell received his BFA from Oregon College of Art & Craft where he teaches studio school classes and workshops. Mitchell is the Founding Editor of Diffusion: Unconventional Photography, an independent, reader and contributor supported annual that highlights and celebrates unconventional photographic processes and photo related artwork. In addition to organizing and curating physical exhibitions around the country, Mitchell curates Plates to Pixels, an online photographic gallery that bridges the gap between antiquated photographic processes and new digital media.
Exhibition dates | September 19 to November 2, 2014
Reception | September 27 & October 25, 2014 both 4 to 7pm
My gratitude to Blue and Amanda for their support of my work.
Brown Pelican Closeup, 2012
White Pelicans, Ding Darling National Park, Sanibel, FL 2010
Utilizing the same lens (Canon L 100-400mm) to capture two different angles.
The top image is a close-up of a Brown Pelican which requires specific detail of the birds feature’s to make it work. The bottom image, of White Pelicans on a sand bar was taken from afar and stands on its soft focus, which creates a painterly effect.
Old Pilings at Sunset, Naples, FL 2013
Visualization of a scene, ahead of time, is often the key to creating something special. In the image above, before the sun was going to set, I positioned a tripod in such a way as to best capture the pilings in the scene, once the sun had gone down. This included monitoring the spacing and assuring their line-up created a pleasant composition throughout the frame.
At this particular location, I also noticed that sometimes, if the water receded far enough back into the Gulf of Mexico, there was a reflection of the pilings on the beach. From experience, some sunsets are dull, while others are spectacular and most others are somewhere in between.
As I have said before, the best part of the sunset, is after it has gone below the horizon, watching for the afterglow. On this particular evening, for a very short time, there was a beautiful, solid, orange background on the horizon. I took advantage of that, and the timing of the tide, to capture the reflection of the pilings on the beach. This scenario was quite short lived giving me only a couple of long exposures to get it right.
This was an example of being in the right place at the right time…and waiting for the right moment.
Mountain Stream, Boone, NC 2005
I captured this old favorite of mine while we were staying in a cabin outside of Boone, North Carolina close to the Blue Ridge Highway. Breathtaking during autumn, this area is also quite beautiful throughout the year. This particular tributary was located right across the roadway from our cabin. When I first found it, the lighting was too bright to slow down the water to show motion.
It is always a good idea to re-visit locations if you can during different lighting situations. I returned to the scene when the sky was overcast and there had recently been a light rain. This type of lighting is best for these situations and allowed me to set up my tripod just inside the flow and capture the water as it made its way towards me. The blue and yellow butterflies that were fluttering around me didn’t make the picture, but still remain in my mind’s eye.
Bird in Sawgrass, Florida Everglades, 2012
Having been out of sorts for a long while, seemingly with the weight of the world upon you, tends to manifest the feeling of isolation. This image captures that feeling wherein the weight of a common South Florida black bird known as a Grackle is supported by a thin reed of Sawgrass in the Florida Everglades.
Although isolated at that very moment, shortly thereafter he flew away, joining other members of his flock and then finding strength in numbers. Until then…
Reflection, Newport, KY 2009
Blue Moon, Atlanta, GA 2009
Contrary to my current situation in one sense and similar in another, the jellyfish in my series FLOW are free to float around, yet only within their own tank. This ironic comparison led me to re-visit the images in my popular Series with two images that have not previously been posted.
My jellyfish portraits are usually created of some variety of Nettle Jellyfish. The Atlantic Sea Nettle (Chrysaora quinquecirrha) inhabits tropical and subtropical parts of the Atlantic and Indo-Pacific and are often seen along the East Coast of the U.S. The Pacific Sea Nettle (Chrysaora fuscescens) is commonly located along the coasts of California and Oregon, but also can be found in the waters north to the Gulf of Alaska, west to the seas around Japan and south to the Baja Peninsula. These jellyfish, an example of which can be seen in the top image, consist of a bell with long tentacles reaching down.
The second, wholly distinct family of jellyfish included in my series, is the Moon Jellyfish (Aurelia aurita). As seen above, it exhibits a more malleable, saucer shaped body, with small tentacles reaching down, All of the jellies in my series are photographed with the existing aquarium light, whether white or colored, in order to catch the illumination of these luminescent creatures as each of them… FLOW around their tanks.
Hopefully, prints of these images as well as others, will continue to travel around the world, even if I can’t make it there myself.
Moonlit Sailboats, Coconut Grove, FL 2010
Pelican Rest, Gulf of Mexico 2010
Due to circumstances beyond my control, I am not able to produce new work for a while. Notwithstanding this situation, I will continue to do my best to post images to keep my work out there in the public’s consciousness. In order to do that, I will be posting older images, including some that have never been exhibited before.
While reviewing much of the older work it made me remember the importance of editing, something that is much easier said then done. When you get serious about photography, it becomes very difficult to separate the better images from those that might not meet the test. In addition to paying attention to the overall composition, lighting, etc., it is often suggested that an outside set of eyes should give an unbiased opinion. Either way, the key is to be extremely critical and be sure that only the best make into the portfolio and/or are ultimately printed for exhibition/collection.
Finally, editing is also critical to the presentation of images in a portfolio, or when published in a book. Here, editing is used to present the images in a sequence that makes them flow. They should be placed in order by comparing color and/or lighting and/or composition and/or subject, so the images lead from one to the next naturally as the viewer sees them. This is more difficult than it seems and it is often necessary to use a professional Editor, even if it is just at the beginning to learn how it is done. I personally have worked with Paula Gillen http://bit.ly/1yMh3Gi, who has helped me along the way.
As a good example of successful editing, in the case of the two images above… they work well next to each other, whether in a portfolio, a book or… across from each other in an office lobby (see last Blog post).