It's August 19th of 2022 about eleven years since I put my first photo collage up at a craft fair in Albany, New York, because I was making images and I wanted to share them. A few years after that, I got back to writing poetry after having to squeeze in a long hiatus of lawyering, fathering, and husbanding.
So it's about time that I embodied my decade of change in an update to my venerable website. As of today, it's probably still riddled with typos that even AutoCorrect cannot cure (because dyslexia) or perhaps ones that AutoCorrect has made worse--we all know how that goes.
In looking back it is interesting to gain some perspective on my various accomplishments and transformations. The convergence of my poetry and photography as things that feed one another is the most remarkable for me. It was my insight back in 2016, while I was working toward my solo show at Roost Gallery in New Paltz, NY that my process for titling my photographs was more or less the same process I followed for writing poetry, I would go to a place in my mind or the place in the picture and look around and see what was there and then write about it. The result of this insight was my first chapbook, and a very cohesive gallery show, based on a series of poems all written for a related series of abstract images.
I'm happy to have poetry more present in my life, and after moving to Mendocino California from Gardiner, New York with my wife Andrea McFarland, who's both a painter and a writer, we've begun to settle down into the pandemic world of uncertainty.
So it is that today I'm a member of the Writers of the Mendocino Coast, an area-based writers' group where I regularly participate in a poets' writing group, and a poets' reading group and monthly meetings of the entire group over Zoom. These organized poetry activities have been a fun way to experience my new California community.
Meanwhile back in Fort Bragg, CA at the Mendocino Coast Photographers Gallery, I have space to show my latest photography, driftwood sculptures and display my poetry book. What's on the wall at the gallery changes as things sell and are replaced or not and also by what's new that I've printed. So keep coming around.
I'm still adding images to the website and I'm going to add some poems to the poetry blog and we'll have to see how it goes. So keep an eye out and see you around at the gallery some time.
South Caspar, Mendocino, CA
Aug. 19, 2022
It's hard to imagine that I put up original Abstract Photography site almost three years ago. I was using an external service, See.Me as my portfolio page and incorporated it into my Google site. But the technology has changed so significantly since then. My portfolio on See.Me no longer works. See.Me is changing their site and merging with Wix and so its' time to move on.
I will be working on improving this new site because the Gardiner Open Studio Tour is just around the corner and I want to have my site ready for all of the attention we will all be getting as our 10,000 Map and Artist Guides go out all around the Hudson Valley and draw views on the internet of our Tour's site and my personal one as well.
So keep an eye out. If things are not looking good on this site, please do drop me a line and let me know what you see is a problem.
A showing of Abstract Photographs at 510 Warren St. Gallery
June 26 - July 26, 2015
Opening: June 27, 5-7pm - Hudson NY
Landscape Thoughtography is my second Featured Artist show at the gallery. Please join me for the opening night party on June 27, 2015 from 5pm-7pm. Refreshments and snacks will be served.
This show includes many new images, all based on original photos. These beautiful limited edition prints just sing with their vibrant colors and curious moods. They really must be seen in person. Most are printed at 24" x 36" inches on aluminum in a very clean and modern format.
The ChromoLuxe Dye Sublimation photographic printing process provides a true immediacy to the viewing experience. With this archival quality process, these prints aren't printed on paper and behind glass, so that there is nothing to separate the viewer from the image or detract from their colorful intensity.
As this month's "Featured Artist" at 510 Warren Street Gallery, I knew I would have a great opportunity to show off my latest work from my new series, "Sharpening the Edges," with perhaps just a bit of room for some older images. As it turned out the show looked terrific and has been getting loads of positive comments. I have the window of the gallery and I managed to fit three images that are visible from the street. As a pedestrian you can really get a good feel for my show just walking by on the sidewalk. But you can't see it all, which I think is actually a good thing. There are still some surprises for the viewer once they come into the gallery.
The biggest surprise both to the gallery and to the visitor is that for the first time there is a video inside the gallery. I had to bring my own TV and four headphones to the gallery and set them up for visitors to be able to hear my musical soundtrack and to watch my video, "Journey to Abstraction." I think it was well worth it. It was a big leap for the gallery, they had never hosted a video before. And it's a natural conversation starter for visitors who are wondering about just how my images come about.
The entire town of Hudson seems to have been involved in the Hudson Winter Walk which was at the same time as the opening this past Saturday. Despite the dreary weather, rain, sleet and cold, the street and soon the gallery was filled with people walking through, talking and taking in the show. I had a chance to speak with quite a few visitors and got very positive responses to my work. My primary goals are to get viewers to pause, look and wonder and engage with my images. That seemed to be the case on Saturday. People were curious and spent a good bit of time looking at the various images, and finding things in them. It seems that because these are photographs, it is peoples' natural inclination to believe that they must show real things. Since this is exactly my point, that photography need not show real things, it is fascinating to watch as viewers look for a reality they are familiar with. Several viewers felt that the images shared similar qualities with modern day science fiction movies. Since this is the everyday person's most frequent contact with photography that does not accurately portray reality, this seems a natural response and I took it as a compliment.
The evening and the opening ended with fireworks, literally, the finale for the Winter Walk is a fireworks display that can be seen from Warren Street. Because the entire street was closed for the event, there were crowds standing in the middle of the roadway in the cold rain watching as in the distance the rockets' red glare disappeared from time to time in the low clouds that shrouded the stars and signaled the end of a very exciting evening. The show at the 510 Warren Street Gallery will be on display until Dec. 28th 2014.
More info at: www.510warrenstgallery.com
This show, 12 new pieces in all, is currently up at my studio/gallery in Gardiner, NY. It went up the night before the Gardiner Open Studio Tour because that's exactly when it arrived--just in the nick of time. It got a lot of positive feedback from our visitors during this past Columbus Weekend.
It is very exciting to have them all up right now in the gallery. I'm living with my work and really enjoying it. It will be hard to see it go when I have to move this show and hang it in Hudson, NY at the 510 Warren St. Gallery for my December solo show there. The entire show is 24 x 36 images printed by Black River Imaging using the ChromoLuxe Dye-Sublimation process onto aluminum, and block mounted so that the images can be hung directly on the wall. The images are vibrant and really pop off of the wall.
The GOST was three days of open studio time with at least 100 people coming through over the three days. When the Tour was finally over Andrea and I were just exhausted and we just couldn't get enough couch time. We love the Tour, but it's heavy lift.
When we finally came to our senses 24 hours later, I was back to work. I had been meaning to do a video about my art making process, and I had started working on it in the off moments during the tour. So two days after the tour I was able to do the sound track and finish my video. "Journey to Abstraction" is a video based on the construction process of images I had already made. These recordings are a byproduct of using ProCreate for iPad as a compositional tool. I'm no wizard at Apple iMovie and I was just stumbling through trying to get things to work. Happily I discovered how I could slow down the transformational recordings of my work to 10% of their recording speed and I was thrilled. It still makes them look a bit blinky, but they are quite interesting and watchable in the video. For anyone who's interested they were recorded in ProCreate as I was creating the images on the iPad. It would be great if PhotoShop could do something similar, but I haven't found a way thus far.
A misleading thing about the video is that even at 10% of the recording speed, it still looks like I can do an image in 4 minutes or something. The recordings only show things I do to the image, they don't show what I don't decide to do. With the way I work, deciding what to do and how to do it are the main part of the creative process and that is not on display in the video. In fact deciding what to do and not do is the part of it that takes all the time. Selecting the menu items and pushing the buttons takes no time at all, it's choosing what buttons to push and deciding if pushing them was a good idea. In the end, even if it's not in the video, I have to say that figuring out what you've got and if it's good or bad is what eats up the night.