Sunday, April 26, 2009

More Wrapping - Center for Women and Families - National Crime Victims' Rights Week

In continuance of my Commodification project, I am working with the Center for Women and Families on awareness raising for National Crime Victims' Awareness Week. This was a performance and photo shoot on the banks of the Ohio River in Louisville, KY. Ron Jasin is my second shooter for the images that I am in. Check out more information on the Center for Women and Families project, visit

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Microscopic Self Portrait

As a child I remember watching Carl Sagan on PBS take all the elemental ingredients of life and put them together in a big slurry of potential. The result was not life, but a sticky mess of iron, protein, carbon and other key elements. It was the first time I remember thinking “What are we?” I believe reflection on that question is one of the fundamental commonalities that all human beings experience.
In this piece I am contemplating the science and nature of my existence, from what I had for dinner last night to the corpuscles that feed my vision and the nerve endings that provide me the sensory experience of pleasure and pain. All these small pieces somehow converge to create a depiction of me, but they are really just iron, protein, carbon, etc. The piece is an extreme form of navel-gazing and while the sums of my parts are represented, they do not accurately portray the whole. In a world where we are used to following recipes and formulas, it defies logic.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

American Gothic

Another image with masks and slightly different coloring. I can't wait to see these printed out large. Someone commented that these mask image reminded them of a modern antique version of American Gothic. Maybe, but I like to think of it as a hybrid between the Chinese and Russian myths of the woman of the snow or frost. It has a more fairytale feel to me. I also want to give thanks to Terry Wunderlich for the super masks.

Dirty Soft

Another image from the recent set. I am constantly amazed at how wonderful my friends are for playing along with my crazy ideas. I'm so lucky to have this energy in my photographs. I think there is a real advantage to a playful approach to staging photos, everyone brings something unexpected to the experience. We play together, we create and I get to indulge my voyeuristic nature. Lucky me! Thanks guys!

Another Image from the Saturday Shoot

Another image from the shoot the other night. A friend whose work I admire suggested I play a little with colors, so I left a hint of the feather and eye color on this image and also used the ochre of the feathers to dirty the image up. Thanks for the suggestion and I'm curious what you all think. I believe the other image has a more sinister quality where this is more tranquil, but still out of the ordinary. More to come!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Recent Studio Work

I had some friends over last Saturday night for drinks and some casual head shot portraits evolved into some more complex play in the studio. I'm so happy with the new pieces and have started processing them in this dirty, antique-looking style. There is something in the aesthetic of old photographs that really appeals to me and I try to bring that into my work. Since I can't be in the darkroom printing tintypes right now, I like working with this digital conversion that is reminiscent of cracked old photos found in the corner of an attic. I like the creepy quality the mask gives to the woman and the stoic look of the man.

I understand that there is a certain morbidity to my work and have struggled with the appeal of main-stream single image photographs. As much fun as it is to make a beautiful image and to have people respond to the "pretty", I think that embracing my shadow self is truly where my most creative and exciting possibilities reside.

A few samples of this work will be forthcoming, as well as a couple of images that are from my commodified humans project.