captured by the sea
“Captured by the Sea” is an evolving body of work documenting sun-seekers at the beach in Italy and France. A play-on-words, the title of this series communicates the state of mind of my subjects, as well as the act of my photographing them. When I create these images, I work as an invisible observer of the people and landscape unfolding around me. As I look through the viewfinder of my camera, I turn down the imaginary volume dial in my brain and quietly study the scene. Every detail has significance, from colors and textures, to facial expressions and body language. It is the juxtaposition of these details in the foreground, mid-ground, and background of the photograph that lends an otherwise unremarkable scene a surreal, dreamlike quality. My goal is to create photographs with enough detail and content that they encourage curiosity and provoke a creative narrative within the viewer. Does she know she’s catching a sunburn? Are they lifetime lovers, or getting fresh for the first time? Do the lifeguards watch the children or their mothers? Are the lone sunbathers seeking solitude or the chance of meeting someone in the surf? Are they too, captured by the sea?
damn the weather
“Damn the Weather” is a series of photographs that document landscapes experiencing the extremities of transient weather patterns. When you live in Seattle, you very quickly learn to deal with the weather. Through my work, I have discovered that weather is the single determining factor that can completely change an ordinary landscape photograph. “Damn the Weather” features a group of images that I have shot over a period of years that exhibit a variety of landscapes enshrouded in weather. What I see when I shoot is not necessarily the scene in front of me, or the landscape as it would be in bright light. Wind creates current. Snow brings brilliant negative space and naturally cold tones. Fog erases horizons and transforms a windy lake into mirrored glass. So, while we damn the weather, I am thankful for the heavy air and dim light that momentarily transforms an unremarkable scene into a moody, captivating photograph.
I find myself completed fascinated by the various bird species that migrate through the pacific northwest. This series focuses primarily on snow geese, coots, and mallard ducks (with the occasional swan). I find that birds have a special way of transforming a landscape, especially when it includes water and weather. Often, the density of fog or the lack of current in the water will create an ethereal and mysterious aura. This passing precipitation has the power to completely erase the horizon line and cause the water and sky to become a blank canvas. And while I find the weather in and of itself always interesting, birds bring complexity and texture to the negative space, and provide action to a scene that is otherwise be perceived to be an empty, tranquil void. If only I could convey the deafening sound of a massive flock, my story of migration would be complete. I welcome suggestions!