My goal is to create fine art black and white photographs. A fine art photograph is one that is both artistically inspired and technically excellent. Technique without art is cold and uninviting, while art without good technique prevents the viewer from truly enjoying the work.
For me a work of art is primary the creative product of a person, not a machine. The creative process starts with capture of the image with the camera and includes not only decisions about what subject matter to include in the capture, but also angle of view, lighting, and technical issues such as depth-of-field and shutter speed. The goal with the camera is to capture an image with enough technical information present to allow realization of my artistic vision for the image. I then process the photographic image either in a traditional darkroom or digitally to obtain a photographic print with emotive and visual appeal. Often my final print has been enhance to make the actual scene photographed more emotionally interesting and dynamic.
I am often asked why I make primarily black and white photographs. This is a decision made because of artistic expression concerns and personal history. For the type of photography I do, I feel that color detracts from the artistic and technical aspects of my interpretation of an image. Also, I have more than 25 years of experience making black and white prints in a traditional darkroom. With traditional darkroom work black and white printing offered much more control over the printing process than color printing. Therefore black and white prints where the choice of most photographers who chose to do their own printing. The advent of digital technology makes available to photographers control over the printing process that was either not possible or extremely difficult with darkroom technology. I have chosen to continue to create black and white image with digital technology because it allows me to build on my many years of experience with black and white photography. My experience allows me to intuitively assess how the tonal values of a scene will translate into black and white images. In the field digital technology also allows me to capture images with a dynamic range that was not easily achievable with film. In the studio, Adobe Photoshop allows me to adjust total and local tonality and contrast in ways that were difficult if not impossible in the darkroom. Therefore, I have continued to make black and white images as my primary means of artistic expression even as I transition to digital technology.
The primary focus of my photography is nature, both in the form of landscapes and still lifes. I spent my childhood and early adult years living and working on the family farm in Southern Indiana where I was out in nature on a daily basis. Many free hours were spent exploring and experiencing the local fields, forest and streams. This experience allowed me to develop an awareness of the beauty in nature, not only in the visual but in the scent and feel of nature. I try to capture and express as much of this awareness as I can in a two dimensional print. I feel most at home and at peace when I am in nature and photographing only serves to increase my awareness of nature. I hope in my photographs to allow the viewer in some small way to find the wonder, beauty, and peace I find in nature.
I have been doing photography full time for the last 14 years. Prior to that I supported my passion for photography by working as a medical researcher and as a patent attorney. I currently live and have my studio in Avondale Estates, GA.