Tag Archives: art

Celebrating the Chinese New Year with Chen Man’s work.

31 Jan

I was hoping to get some stable time in today, and celebrate The Year of the Horse, well, on MY horse. Alas, between the weather and a sick boy, I am going to have to wait another day.

I decided to spend the day celebrating Chen Man‘s contribution to the visual world.

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Arguably, China’s leading fashion photographer, Chen has quickly become one of the world’s leading artists, with more editorials and exhibitions than I can list!

An interview worth reading.

Or this one.

I honestly cannot stop reading nor looking at her work!

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This image, for example, is a marvelous example of Chen’s mastery of combining traditional and modern themes, as well as Eastern and Western cultures. The line composed by the red give way to a conceptual growth and societal change throughout traditional China. The model is dressed modernly, yet acting in respect to her country’s flag (illustrative symbolism).

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While browsing her works, I am impressed at how effortlessly Chen Man is able to switch styles.

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If you are not able to spend the Chinese New Year with your favorite equine, then I suggest doing so with China’s favorite visual artist and fashion photographer!

#Yearofthehorse

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The fruits of unemployment

6 Jan

For the past 2yrs, I have photographed every day – for someone else. While I enjoyed my job, it doesn’t change that my own equipment has been collecting dust!

It’s far too cold to go outside, so I seized the opportunity to plug in my umbrellas and engage in the once forgotten “Light Dance.” Today’s subject: My lunch.

 

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Such a mild-mannered grapefruit, waiting so patiently.

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I really enjoyed the texture of the rind. I may dry that out and use it in my next encaustic project. Maybe…

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One of my friends said that he had never been so turned on by grapefruit in his life! *Blushes*

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Now, my question to each of you is, what is your experience with Adobe Creative Cloud? I love my CS, but am thinking I may want to try CC.

In the dawn of 2014

30 Dec

I recently parted ways with my (former) employer. It wasn’t an easy decision, and involved quite  few tears on my part. I loved my job! However, something was rotten in Denmark and I found myself at a crossroad. When my resignation letter had finally reached the masses, I was already long out of town. At that point, the owner’s opinion was really the only one that mattered. When he texted me, I was stopped in my tracks, sat on a stack of 50lb feed bags and cried. I was hoping that he would not ask me to reconsider. Because I would’ve. And I think he knew it, but respected that I was ready to move on. In that frozen, chilly barn, as I sat, watching my phone light up. I was as honest as I could be. I wished him well and encouraged him to resolve whatever it is that is holding his vision down. And, while I am probably – currently – thought of as She Who’s Name Should Not Be Spoken, I valued my time with the company and wish my former staff success.

While I do not like the cold, I love, LOVE the winter skies. They are as clear and crisp as the frozen air that stabs my lungs. It sounds as if the new year maybe bringing me to my family in Denmark. So, I’ve assembled some clear nights over Denmark for you amusement.

 

FC Nikon via Flickr Night in Copenhagen

From the Flickr page of FC Nikon, Night in Copenhagen.

 

From Sail Training International

 

From the Sail Training International website, Aalborg, Denmark

James Neeley via Raymond Larose

James Neeley, via Flickr.

 

Viktor Dobai Aalborg

Viktor Dobai, Aalborg, Denmark.

 

Hold dig varm, og Godt Nytår!

 

 

 

Turning the World into Art: Myoung Ho Lee

4 Dec

Not many things floating around on Facebook catch my eyes quite like this series by Myoung Ho Lee.

Lee’s series illustrates what it means to separate the subject from it’s environment. By placing a canvas behind each tree, Lee brings the subject forward into the viewer’s perception, while creating distance with the subject’s environment. This process gives way to the ambiguity of the surroundings to the subject.

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To see more, visit Yossi Milo Gallery.

Resigning this life for another

28 Oct

As it happens so often with my world, it has been busy. Too busy to do the things I enjoy, including this blog. But, a recent resignation letter from one of my (now former) staff members has me thinking that perhaps I have spent too much time on the creative efforts of others while keeping mine second, or third, or last.

A talented photographer resigned from our humble establishment, siting lack of creative freedom. She has since found happiness in a tropical paradise and has decided that our quaint Nebraska get-up is no longer fueling her artistic juices.

Commercial portraiture is a hard leap for any fine artist. Someone who has spent years in school learning how to compose and create finds themselves suddenly working for another’s vision of cookie-cutter perfection. While I appreciate my employer’s endeavors, and thoroughly, honestly, enjoy what I do, I can see myself in my (former) staff member’s bullet points. I don’t write as much as I used it. I hardly photograph anything that isn’t a cute bundle of joy. And I spend more time making sure others adhere to protocol, rather than encouraging their inherit artistic nature.

We are photographers. Creating something unique is what we do! Looking at something from a different angle or in a unique light, then showcasing our “ah-ha’s” is the very definition of what we crave.

At first, I was angry that one of my best photographers suddenly left. Then, I was jealous because I would love to run off to a tropical island! Now, I am at a place where I understand where she is coming from, and am jealous, not because she is sipping Mai Tais while digging her toes into the sand, but because she found a way to keep herself from drowning. While I think my job is completely fantastic, I need to learn to say “no,” and turn off my phone while I am not at work – and to get back into my studio.

Sorry, I do not have photos to showoff today. Only introspection.

Happy Halloween!

Gregory Colbert and the Empathy Effect

2 Jul

Today, I found myself questioning whether or not my sense of empathy is a positive or a negative. I am not an emotional person, however I have always prided myself in being able to understand the view points of others. Today, work tested my empathetical advantage, leaving me angry that I cannot always communicate in such a cut and dry manner.

Nothing a cookie shouldn’t be able to fix, I suppose. Or a game of chess. Or an evening with my horse. Or an evening with a heavy bag? Oh, the options.

But, if cookies, or horses, or kickboxing or board games aren’t your cup of tea, try Gregory Colbert’s approach (all of the following from Ashes and Snow):

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Scientific methodologies say that we should not ascribe human emotions to animals. Looking through Colbert’s works, it is impossible to understand how anyone could even suggest that an animal other than ourselves is not able to communicate emotions that are equal to our own.

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And, perhaps, our empathy for one another isn’t as powerful as we would like to think. But, can you say the same about human empathy toward animals? How would your reaction differ if someone kicked your friend compared to if they kicked your dog?

My response to what I would do if someone kicked my faithful Doberman: Do you have bail money?

And my friend? After she dusted herself off, my reaction would be the least of the responsible party’s problems.

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As for my topsy-turvy work induced empathy? They know I have their backs.

Go check-out Colbert’s works. I’m particularly interested in his use of encoustics and plan on approaching this subject at a later time. Perhaps it isn’t chess nor kickboxing that I need, but rather some alone time with my rosin, wax and mortar!

The art of not caring, but really caring

19 Jun

We’ve all reached our limits. Some of us have been at that point more than once. Some of us have taken up residence and insist on being neurotically stressed about every thing all of the times.

I am crossing the threshold between caring and outwardly not caring. What I mean is that I do care, and will continue to. However, I am at the point of breakage where I feel that I am damned if I do, damned if I don’t.

One photographer who mastered the art of appearing to not care – the nonchalant approach – is also one of my favourites: Garry Winogrand.

List of some intriguing Winogrand quotes. Get inside the mind of ambivalent perfection.

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World’s Fair, New York City. 1964. Garry Winogrand.

“No one moment is most important. Any moment can be something.”

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From Animals. Garry Winogrand.

“You see something happening and you bang away at it. Either you get what you saw or you get something else–and whichever is better you print.”

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Los Angeles. 1966. Garry Winogrand.

“The primary problem is to learn to be your own toughest critic. You have to pay attention to intelligent work, and to work at the same time. You see. I mean, you’ve got to bounce off better work. It’s matter of working.”

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From the Estate of Garry Winogrand.

“Photos have no narrative content. They only describe light on surface.”

 

There you have it. A man who seemed to work tirelessly, leaving thousands upon thousands of photos behind, actually had a plan all along. Take comfort in this, my friends. I know I will.

“Great photography is always on the edge of failure.”

Go Outside and Do Something: Motivation from Ronny Kiaulehn

26 May

Spring took it’s dear time coming to Omaha. It seems that it may finally be here to stay – and not a moment too soon, as a summer full of bikinis and bbqs is knocking at my door!

If you need a little push out into the sunshine, take some time and visit Ronny Kiaulehn’s site.

Kiaulehn’s site offers a little bit of everything, including a Wellness portfolio that has me reaching for my massage therapist’s number! Also, I’m not sure a MacBook has ever had a better swim – well, certainly not a better looking swim, anyway!

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Be sure to visit Kiaulehn’s facebook. We all love friends with excellent lighting techniques!

The Awesomeness of Ryan McGinley

28 May

I must apologize for my prolonged absence. In the blogosphere, two weeks is an eternity, no? Well, my computer is still collecting dust in the back of some geek’s office, patiently awaiting repair. My new job has taken over. And, to be honest, May means extra riding time! Hoot!

So, to welcome myself back to my blog, I bring you the awesome-awe of Ryan McGinley:

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Egg Donors

12 May

Mother’s Day is this weekend. My kids have already come home from school with cute momentos that will forever remain in the “awe” section of my keepsakes.

I have not bad a stable, confident, consistent mother figure in my life. My mother, whom I refer to as the “egg donor” made it clear that she isn’t ready to face her past (ie, me). Stepmom 1 doesn’t deserve to be acknowledged. Stepmom 2 is actually normal, but did not take the roll of “stepmother” until after I had left home. My grandmothers, though loving women, were not able to take the role as lead female.

Therefore, I dedicate this Mother’s Day to Audrey Hepburn.

Some infamous photos and quotes….

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“I believe in pink. I believe that laughing is the best calorie burner. I believe in kissing, kissing a lot. I believe in being strong when everything seems to be going wrong. I believe that happy girls are the prettiest girls. I believe that tomorrow is another day and I believe in miracles.”

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“You can tell more about a person by what he says about others than you can by what others say about him.”

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“I have to be alone very often. I’d be quite happy if I spent from Saturday night until Monday morning alone in my apartment. That’s how I refuel.”

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*Note: I’m having computer issues and am bringing this to you via iPad. Forgive the infamous mobile typos! Happy Mother’s Day to all!