Thursday, January 28, 2010

Top Photographers #1

And my #1 photographer is.... the collaboration of Walter Martin and Paloma Munoz. I first discovered their work while I was researching for my thesis show. They have a series called Travelers that is all about being away from home, which is what my work was about. I actually sent an email to them asking more about their work. Paloma wrote back and gave me some more background on her work and encouraged me on mine. I love that there is a big sculptural component to their work because I've always thought if I weren't a photographer, I would be a sculptor. Plus they are kinda quirky...

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Top Photographers #2

My second favorite photographer was actually my first favorite photographer ever. It was the first work that I saw and was instantly in love with. I first saw his work at Photographs Do Not Bend gallery in Dallas, which holds a special place in my heart because we used to go on field trips there when I went to Austin College. The photographer is Chema Madoz. The first series I did in grad school was heavily influenced by his work. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, I suppose. The little images on the web do not do justice to his work. Not only are the images interesting and thought provoking, but the prints themselves are gorgeous, some of the most beautiful black and white prints I have ever seen.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Top Photographers #3

My #3 choice is Michael Kenna. I'm generally not a fan of landscape photography, but I think his are just gorgeous.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Top Photographers #4

My number 4 photographer is Gregory Crewdson. He sets up these very elaborate scenes in which he controls everything. The thing that I like about his work is that it is so narrative. I love looking at the images and making up a story to go with them. They are very thought provoking for me.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Top Photographers #5 again

The problem with listing my 5 favorite photographers is that I really only have 2. The other 3 are pretty much always changing. My number 5 changed this weekend, hence writing about #5 again.
Four years ago, I was living in LA and I went to an event called PhotoLA which is basically a bunch of commercial galleries showing off the work they sell. One of the booths there was Photo Eye which is a book seller. I found this little book by a photographer I had never heard of. The book was a small paperback that came with a limited edition print. This is the print I chose to buy.

I noticed that the artists contact info was in the back of the book and I was so taken with the work that I even emailed him to let him know how much I liked it. He wrote back and was very kind.

Skip ahead 4 years, Friday night I was at HCP's annual print auction preview exhibition. I have a tradition of walking through the exhibition and decided what I would buy if I had any money and which piece is my absolute favorite. I do this without looking at the labels so I'm basing my decision only on the art itself. This year, this monkey picture is my favorite.

So, I go up to the piece to look at the label and turns out it was the same photographer that I found at PhotoLA: Hiroshi Wantanabe.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Top Photographers #5

This week I am going to count down my 5 favorite photographers.

My number 5 pick is very different than the other 4. His images are based in science rather than fiction. Harold Edgerton uses photography for motion studies. His images teach us about the way things move and are fascinating to look at.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

New favorite artist (of the week)

When I was in San Diego for Christmas, my family and I went to see a show at the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego of Tara Donovan's work. I wasn't familiar with her work but it looked cool online so we all went. It was amazing! She makes work out of everyday objects on a monumental scale.

This was the piece that was on the website and made me want to go see it. It's made of styrofoam cups.

This was my favorite piece in the show. It was made of millions of drinking straw stacked against a wall. Some were pulled out at different lengths from the wall of its had a wavy effect. The coolest thing though was that as you moved around it looked completely different. You could only see the holes in the straws you were right in front of. The holes make the straws look brighter so as you move around, the bright spot moves around also. It was very neat!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Top Photos #1

It's finally here: the reveal of my favorite photo I've ever taken. I took it my second semester in grad school when I finally figured out what having a concept in your images meant. It's the earliest photo that I'm the most proud of.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Top Photos #2

My second favorite photo I've ever taken is from my thesis show, Uncertain. I love this photo because it works really well on a couple of levels. First, it illustrates perfectly what the idea of the series is. It's probably the images that can best stand on its own from that series. Second, I think it's just gorgeous. The 4x5 gives so much detail that you can see more on the seed pods in the image than in real life. Even the viewer that doesn't look for meaning can still enjoy it.


I went to a memorial service for a very talented photography student this weekend.

Patrick, you will be missed.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Top Photos #3

Of my top five photos, this has the least of a story. It's actually just a picture I really like. It's from my Coming of Age series. A few birthdays ago, my sister got me a really cute fish tank so I went out and bought four guppies. Two of them died almost instantly so, rather than have them die in vain, I used them for art.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Top Photos #4

This photo is in my top 5 not because I love the photo, but because of what it represents. This is the very first photo I ever printed. It started my love of photography and being in the darkroom. It was taken in 2000 (Wow, this is my 10 year anniversary of being addicted to the darkroom) at Austin College. The assignment was to shoot an entire roll of the same subject. I chose eyes.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Top Photos #5

For the next 5 days, I'm going to count down my 5 favorite photos I have ever taken.

My number 5 photo was shot in 2005 in Los Angeles. When I got done with grad school, I made very few photos. I was so convinced that it was pointless to make a photo unless it fit into a series and had some deep meaning that I just didn't make any. One day, I decided that I was going to force myself to take some pictures so I went walking around this shopping center that was under contraction. I shot about half a roll of film and that was pretty much it. About a year later, after moving to Houston, I found a roll of 120 film that wasn't processed and I had no idea what was on it. I took it to be processed and found this image from that shoot. It's one of my favorites because it illustrates exactly how I was feeling at the time...completely blocked.

Friday, January 1, 2010

joining the digital revolution...kinda

I will start this blog by saying that I am still a hardcore film user. That said, using my 5 MP Canon Rebel that I have had since grad school for the shoots that I do do digitally was getting embarrassing. So, my awesome uncle Paul got me a D90 for christmas. I'm super excited about it because not only will the pictures be better quality, but it will also shoot HD video. I used it for a mini-shoot at Torrey Pines State Reverse. Here's a shot from that...