Casey 3 Photo

Urban Landscape/Photo Journalist/Fine Art Photographer

Tag Archives: art

Keeping Records

Among other things, you’ll find that you’re not the first person who was ever confused and frightened and even sickened by human behavior. You’re by no means alone on that score, you’ll be excited andstimulated to know. Many, many men have been just as troubled morally and spiritually as you are right now. Happily, some of them kept records of their troubles. You’ll learn from them – if you want to. Just as someday, if you have something to offer, someone will learn something from you. It’s a beautiful reciprocal arrangement. And it isn’t education. It’s history. It’s poetry.
The Catcher in the Rye


Upcoming Photo Exhibition and Some New Work

To start of this blog post, I’ll begin with the alleged ‘exciting stuff’. I wrote an exhibition proposal about a month and a half ago for the Station House Gallery’s 2011/12 season. I was unsure how the idea would be received, but I was satisfied with my efforts and either way, it was a learning curve for me. Anyone who is familiar with writing proposals or grants, knows it’s no walk in the park. I certainly struggled with the format and even borrowed some literature on how to make a proper Artist Statement and CV — not the most interesting stuff in the world, but in this line of work it is VITAL to be able to persuade a Gallery to show your work. You might have some amazing images, but without a convincing proposal, it might not work to your benefit. Needless to say, my confidence is boosted.

Last week, I got an e-mail from the Exhibition Committee informing me that my photo proposal ‘Faces of Industry’ has been selected for the season! I was at a loss for words when I read the e-mail (expecting a Thanks, but no Thanks). ‘Faces of Industry’ is a documentary/portrait series exploring small town industry and the men and women who are involved in these incredibly difficult jobs. I’ll be commencing the project this fall and shooting on medium format and the show will open March 1st here in Williams Lake. I’m excited to have the show and hope to generate this into a book as well, but one day at a time. I’ll also be writing grant proposals like there’s no tomorrow.

New Series – My Personal Void

This past few months, my works has gone from ‘happy-go-lucky’ beautiful scenic and commercial portraiture to a more desolate and barren urban/rural landscape look. It’s a series I’ve been working on, and a very personal one. Leaving Vancouver Island was a tough move, relocating back to Williams Lake was even tougher and this work reflects that. It’s my own photo diary of how I felt making the transition and contemplating my next move in life.  This past week, I went to Kamloops, BC and met up with Will Winter , a fantastic Victoria based fine art photographer, who is working on his own series. Together we roamed the Thompson-Nicola Valley region. This part of BC is dry, barren and dead-like. It was a perfect combination of what I was trying to convey in my work and it ended up being the strongest imagery for my series — completely unintended as I had gone to hang out with Will and just have fun. Here’s some of the images I managed to get.

End of the Roll

 

Scanners — B&W Prints

I scanned some 35mm ISO 200 colour film, expired circa 2007 (?) on my Canoscan 4400F — amazing!! After uploading them, I decided to convert a majority of them to black and white and what I got was a beautiful heavy grain look. Take a look-see:

Negatives!

I decided to scan some old negatives I took a few months ago in Vancouver. They haven’t been well kept, but I do like the ‘scratched authenticity’ to them.

 

 

Some New (and Exciting) Things!

I just noticed that my last Blog update was April 19th — that means I didn’t post a single blog in the month of May!! How inappropriate of me. The month of May was slow for me. I got a new job and it required me to work quite a few night shifts and that took up a good portion of time I would have loved to have dedicated to photography, but never fear, for I have returned, haha.

Last week I was asked by local singer/songwriter and friend of mine, Oren Barter, to take some photos to promote his upcoming tour. We used a great space in the Central Cariboo Arts and Culture Society building and this is what I came up with:

A few weeks ago, I ordered a Holga 120GN medium format camera from an online store in Hong Kong. For those who don’t know what a ‘Holga’ is, it’s simply a plastic toy camera. That’s right, a toy. They’re cheap, plastic and they take AMAZING photographs! Because of its limitations with 1 shutter speed (1/100th), two apertures (F/8 and F16) and problems with light leaks, the Holga produces ‘unpredictable’ dreamlike images. Some Holgas have a cheap plastic lens that creates a sharp middle, blurred surrounding and also have a strong vignetting around the edges. I bought a Holga that comes with a glass lens because I like sharper images. The Holga is also medium format, meaning that rather than 35mm cropped photos that you would normally get with an SLR, the images are 6×6, meaning they’re square. The reason I bought one is because rather than trying to create a mistake-ist look in Photoshop, I figured why not just go to the source and embrace the unpredictable beauty of the real deal? I haven’t had a chance to develop the film yet and hopefully within the next couple of weeks, I’ll be able to do that. This is by no means a ‘pro’ camera, and it’s advised that you do not solely use one for commercial or client work, but it’s certainly fun to have on the side for personal use.

In the next month or so, I’ll be getting a Photography Group established in town. The purpose is to not only create a group of like-minded people to get together with and talk photos, but also to create a community where people can talk business and marketing strategies, hold exhibitions, promote one another, host workshops and develop a stronger photography movement in the area. With the Central Cariboo Arts and Culture Society in town, I believe this is the time and place to take advantage of such a thing and it’s exciting! I’m hoping to get a few people interested and from there we can meet a couple of times a month and work out a plan that best suits everyone and they’re levels of skill and development.

Also, just finished some new Business Cards — I do have to credit Victoria, BC based designer Alain Champagne for the original design, which I did buy the rights to use.

MTPWSY: Leah Selk

  • Who are you?
    I am Leah Selk

    Are you schooled or self-taught?
    My dad attempted to teach me how to use his Pentax Spotmatic II in my pre-teen years, but that didn’t last long. I started off as self-taught in regards to darkroom by learning how to develop my poorly exposed negatives (like I said, Dad attempted, but wasn’t very successful) in the dusty Columneetza darkroom learning from whatever old material or books I could find there (the darkroom and equipment hadn’t been used since the 70’s per the dates on the chemicals). I’ve been schooled since then.

    When did you first pick up a camera and the moment you just knew?
    These were separate occasions. My father had attempted to teach me at an earlier age – I didn’t put the camera down, but I also didn’t take anything about it seriously. It wasn’t until I took a photo class as part of the Fine Arts program at Camosun College in Victoria that I started to realize what the camera was actually capable of and it sucked me in – enough so that I pretty much gave up the drawing and painting that took me to Camosun in the first place and entered the photography program at Concordia University in Montreal to complete my Bachelors.

    What type of photography do you specialize in and why?
    Fine Art photography, because the camera is a way for me to express myself as an artist. This usually comes through via self-portraits and staged scenes amongst natural landscapes, and anything to do with nostalgia. I also found that I was drawing from my photos, so decided to put more into creating the photo as the final product.

    Favorite lens?

     Mamiya RB 50mm. It’s so sexy. Holga lenses also rock, if you’re in to unpredictability.

    Who are your influences? And if you had one question to ask them, it would be ….. ?

    Influences would be Bob Preston (Camosun College photo tech), Raymonde April and Marisa Portolese (professors at Concordia University), a few peers (Sara A. Tremblay, Daniela Ansovini, Daniel Barney, Meera Margaret Singh, Celia Perrin Sidarous, Louis Perreault). Big Wigs: Cindy Sherman, Bill Brandt, Jeff Wall. Question: Can I take your picture in a uniquely individual staged setting?

    You ideal Gig? 

    I don’t do no stinkin’ gigs…

    If there is any advice, whether it be camera or business related, it would be ….

    Don’t give up on film.

MTPWSY: Kate McLaren

Who are you?

Kate McLaren

Schooled or self-taught?

I learned retouching in school and that definitely helped me make up for what I lacked in technical skills and equipment. I’ve gradually bridged that gap by some assisting but mostly it’s amazing what you can teach yourself online. There are so many great resources out there.

When did you first pick up a camera and the moment you just knew?

It’s been a long process. My dad writes books on archival marine photography, so growing up, I’d always been exposed to a lot of really interesting imagery and had a strong appreciation for great pictures instilled in me. Although he’s a fairly burly sea captain, he’s been known to steal my Vogue Magazines from time to time! I honestly didn’t do too much in high school aside from a few run of the mill angsty teen goth shoots in Ross Bay Cemetery. After high school, I attended Emily Carr and went on to graduate from Capilano University’s design and illustration program with a view to becoming a graphic designer. I’d started taking photos at Cap mainly so I could hone my retouching skills, but it wasn’t till after graduation when my dad bought me my first DSLR that I really decided it was something I couldn’t live without.

What type of photography do you specialize in and why?

I specialize in portraiture and fashion. My mother is a phenomenal portrait artist and I think that is where I got my fascination with portraying people. She has this amazing way of getting to know her each of her subjects and capturing their personalities on canvas and if you’re good, you can do the same thing on film. While I appreciate architectural and nature photography when it is well executed, I personally feel that nothing is more interesting and beautiful than the human form. I’ve always been a fashion junkie and the theatrics/fantasy of it all has always intrigued me – it’s all about building an illusion and I love that. I’ve also become a bit of a drag queen specialist -not something I really planned on, but I happen to know a lot of fabulous queens personally and no one has better make up or more glamourous wardrobes.

Favorite lens and why?

Equipment comes second to my interest in the subject. I’ve never really liked talking about it although I recently upgraded and love, love, love my new baby.

Who are your influences? And if you had one question to ask them, it would be ….. ?

My influences vary greatly, ranging from Hedi Slimane’s stark black + whites to David LaChapelle’s saturated grotesque fantasy creations and even to a lot of the amazing emerging talent on flickr is incredibly inspiring. I would probably ask LaChapelle what Amanda Lepore is like on set.

Ideal gig would be ….

Shooting Amanda Lepore….for Italian Vogue

If there is any advice, whether it be camera or business related, it would be ….

The only way to grow as a photographer, or as anything else for that matter, is to jump in the deep end – to put yourself in uncomfortable situations and force yourself to rise to the occasion.

    To see more of Kate’s work, visit www.kate-mclaren.com

    Leaves

    Leaves from the backyard. I love the texture and the waviness to them, almost looks like they’re swimming or floating.

    I also did some more random shots of watches, chains, etc.

    Isn’t All Photography Still Life?