May 18, 2017
Dead Joshua Tree, Las Vegas Nevada
Photograph selected for Honoring Trees, a juried exhibition at PhotoPlace Gallery. Laura Valenti, juror.
When: June 7 To July 21, 2017
Where: PhotoPlace Gallery, 3 Park Street, Middleburry VT 05753 802.388.4500
Juror's Statement: In his book The Practice of the Wild, poet and essayist Gary Snyder points out that “wild” is most often defined by what it is not. So, it is undomesticated, untamed, uninhabited, uncultivated, uncivilized. What if, he writes, we instead define it by what it is? Through this lens, “wild” becomes: self-propagating, flourishing, pristine, exuberant, original, self-reliant, ecstatic, free. Seen in this more positive light, nature has agency and power – a sense of dynamism that reminds us to take note, to honor the wild places we’re still lucky enough to have.
The images selected for this exhibition are poetic, evocative, and deeply interpretive. They masterfully capture some of the spirit of their subjects, rather than simply telling us what things look like. This attention to mood and emotion brings the scenes alive and inspires us to care. I hope the exhibit serves as an invitation to celebrate the wild beauty of trees and to contemplate what we stand to lose in the relentless drive for environmental dominion. As Edward Abbey so poignantly reminds us, “Love of wilderness is…an expression of loyalty to the earth, the earth which bore us and sustains us, the only paradise we shall ever know, the only paradise we ever need, if only we had the eyes to see.” -Laura Valenti
May 4, 2017
Photographed on April 22, 2017 in Las Vegas Nevada.
Tiko Lieou, assistant.
For awhile, my modus operandi has pretty much been to get far away from humans and make pictures out in the landscape. The more remote, the better. The fewer references to humans in the pictures, the better. Lately that's turned around a bit and I've had the craving to get back into portraiture. Thanks to Michael James for being amazing, a gracious model and for fueling my inspiration to the point that I had to act on it. And thanks always to my trusty assistant and general partner in crime, Tiko.
April 7, 2017
Ivy In Winter; View From My Mother's Kitchen Window, Sandusky Ohio 2008
Limited edition 8x10 archival print up for auction today April 7 at Stivers School for the Arts in Dayton Ohio. Stivers is a public magnet school, grades 7-12. This auction benefits the photography program.
If I myself hadn't gone to a high school with an advanced art & photography program, I might not have known that I was meant to pursue a career in photography. Kids need art programs! Consider contributing to a local arts program if you can.
January 7, 2017
Amboy Crater is made of nested cinder cones in the heart of the Mojave Desert. I was in love with this place the first time I saw this stark pile of rubble that makes up the crater itself and the otherworldly field of jet black basaltic lava surrounding it. Since then, I’ve visited several times at different times of year, spending lots of time photographing it. Until now I’ve only made one successful picture there, this one being the second picture that I’m satisfied enough with to share.
This might be the closest I’ve ever come to making a perfect picture. Closest to “perfect” at least in terms of what I want to achieve by making pictures. In this case, much credit goes to luck; being in the right place at the right time. (If only these sort of atmospheric conditions could be predicted and planned for.) After a long meandering walk through the lava field making dozens of exposures, I entered the crater. I turned to look at the sun. Not only was the ephemeral sun halo still there but the alignment of all the elements spoke so profoundly to me. I was so happy to be there, only intensifying my love affair with the Mojave Desert.