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Mindscapes and Photoexpressionism

February 15th, 2014

Mindscapes and Photoexpressionism

I began this Blog entry mistakenly thinking that I was creating the blog itself, its name, a link from it to more information, an image that captured the title of what I thought was to be my Blog on Fine Art America and by the time I had finished filling in the information and hitting submit it became clear that what the good folks at Fine Art America actually meant was "Blog Entry" and all of the future entries would be found under my name as opposed to my chosen Blog title Mindscapes and Photoexpressionism.

In any case, my Blog was intended to present "musings, meanderings and observations on art and photography's place in it."

So now here I am trying to figure out how to convert the one to the other and what I can say that will have some substance in the face of the reality which is that I would need to write a short tomb in order to cover the topic.

For me a straight photograph is rarely enough to capture the essence of what I am seeking to express.

Don't get me wrong. I have a deep appreciation for the pure photograph as art. I think that Dorthea Lange or Ansel Adams or Minor White are extraordinary artists and a "simple" color or black and white image can have the impact or beauty of any great work of art. However, for me I generally want to make the art of creating an image a process that goes beyond the simply art form to what I have termed a "dreamlike quintessentialism" designed to spark an emotional response from the viewer. Even now as the words escape my figurative lips they seem contrived, arrogant - an affectation. Yet, for the life of me I can't find a more apt way to explain either the process or the outcome when I undertake to create an image.

Perhaps it is a measure of my own failing as an artist. The fact that I can only rarely capture an image that I find satisfying without my intervention. The image titled "The Vineyard" (http://bit.ly/MVinyard) struck me as a mildly interesting image as a pure photograph when first taken and printed. It was beautiful in its simplicity but in black and white it failed to capture the muted hues of the foggy day and in color its hues didn't seem to capture the simplicity and romance of the moment. So I printed the image on watercolor paper, through a piece of textured glass and then added my mind's own colors with watercolor paints. The original, output in a limited edition is comprised of what effectively is a hybrid between an original and a short run limited edition with 25 hybrid-originals each varying to some extent with the watercolor painting. To produce an image that is more affordable, one of the hand-painted images was scanned for the open edition to be output without further manipulation of the image.

Another example is shown above and entitled "A Window Onto Winter". Two different photographs serve as the base of this image a photograph of purple bottles in an arched window and two young apple trees after a winter snow. The apples, a black and white image crafted with a textured glass filter and given a blue hue and dropped into the backdrop behind the bottles and the window. The window itself is actually much more perfect in its form but I was not looking for correct, I was looking for impact and torn between trying to disguise my treachery and flaunting it. I chose to flaunt it - ignoring the perfect straight lines of the wooden frame and making them rough and imperfect. It works for me, it may not work for you or you may find it as compelling as do I. That's what makes the world an interesting place and that's what achieves dreamlike quintessentialism in my own universe.