1. two individuals of the same sort considered together. "a couple of girls were playing marbles"
synonyms: pair, duo, twosome, two;
2. two people who are married, engaged, or otherwise closely associated romantically or sexually.
synonyms: husband and wife, twosome, partners, lovers;
What is a couple? Why do two people form a union? This ongoing series is a visual exploration of couples I meet by chance on the street and who agree to be photographed. We make some small talk, I briefly explain the project, and ask them three questions:
1. Can I take a photograph of you both?
2. What are your first names?
3. How long have you been a couple or married?
I take two photographs, a couple, and use film so the subjects can not see the images immediately after. No posing is done besides having them stand in front of the camera, they can simply be themselves together.
For this series I am exploring the use of spontaneous unplanned portraits and looking at the dynamics of couples. Will the awkwardness of doing something quick and unexpected reveal something more about a subject? Can we really come to know anything more about these couples, or couples in general, from looking at the individual images? Or will examining the body of work as a whole reveal something about why we couple or why we don’t?
Black and white film is used as a metaphor for the dynamics of a couple, as film is not just made up of black and white but shade of grey. Just like things are not always black and white in a couple’s relationship, they are more often than not shades of grey, versions of the truth, rights and wrongs, and perspectives.
The choice of camera, a Mamiya C330 twin lens, is also intentional as it employs one lens to view and another lens to record the subject on film. I like this coupling as it speaks to the subjective and objective duality of photography. What can we trust about an image? What really can we glean from a photograph as they are split seconds plucked from reality and frozen in time. Do the images say more about the photographer, or does the viewer completely author their own meaning?
We all long to connect, to bridge a distance between others, one way we do this is to form relationships and one of the closest ones we can make is with a partner, a coupling. How much we give and take in that relationship is truly a reflection of who we are as people. A couple’s relationship is complicated and beautiful, thank you to all those who share a few split seconds of theirs with me.
Working on a long-term project, Expired. Using expired film this series explores spaces and places that are close to expiring or are very well worn. I am using a Graflex: Super Graphic 4x5 for the series, the last model of the expired large format Graflex camera line. This series is a look at the beauty and usefulness of the things we discard.
“Underneath the camera.. it is so magnificently beautiful. It is upside down and backwards, true but have you seen through a view camera. You can just pay admission to see through a view camera it is so mysterious.” ~ Judith Joy Ross
Inspired by the work of Diane Arbus and Judith Joy Ross these images are portraits of strangers I meet in the park. These images are taken with a Deardorff 8x10 camera all shot on black and white film. I am interested in using the camera to connect with people.
The 8x10 Deardorff camera is a curiosity to most, it initiates conversation and helps allows two strangers to connect for a short time through photography. The use of space and a minimal depth of field is a used to isolate the subject and speaks to the distance I sometimes feel towards others.
This ongoing series is a visual exploration of people who love wearing hats, people who wear them for their occupation and those that wear them for religious or cultural purposes. I am interested in exploring people’s interest in this garment and how it helps define them and why they like wearing them.
This work started out with frustration, frustrated with the litter I saw everywhere. However, at the time I was reading a book at the The Happiness Advantage by Shawn Achor and one of the premises of the book was taking looking at things in a different light makinga negative a positive. So I thought about how to turn this into a positive while doing some street photography.
It was mid-day and sunny so I decided to use my shadow to interact with the garbage on the street. For fun I thought that some boundaries should be placed on the project:
1. No touching the object before I photographed it.
2. Use a shadow.
3. Pick up the litter after.
This series was done over a few weeks and I can to realize quickly the intricacy of shooting in this style. The images could only be taken from about 1-3PM each day, after and before the shadows cast were too long and I could not properly frame the shot. The time of year came into play to, as it moved closer to winter the time of day became earlier to take these shots and eventually a very limited window to photograph occurred. It was also challenging to express emotion with just one hand and a shadow, the correct piece of litter needed to be found to really get the images to work.
Street photography is a great way to hone your skills as a photographer. It was one of the first thing that drew me to photography. I have always been inspired by photographers like Robert Frank, Lisette Model and the irreverent images of Martin Parr to name a few.
Tableware, the plates and cutlery we eat off of is something we often take for granted. So sometimes it is nice just to slow down and look at it under the right light. I find one of my strongest influences always seems to be Paul Strand and his Abstractions.
Pasta is an amazing food, something i have been fascinated and enamoured with since my days as a cook. I love to look at it from different perspectives.
Sin City, the City of Lights, America's Playground; I am not going to lie, I did not like Vegas. At least not what I was suppose to like about Vegas. I do not care much for gambling and the showy nature of the city was to much for me. What I did like is peeling back the covers of the city a bit and seeing its underbelly.
One day my wife and I took a walk from our hotel to the end of the strip, right to the beginning of Las Vegas Blvd. Vegas is very much like it is in the movies all glamour and glitz, but across the street for a large part of the strip is low end hotels, strip clubs and run down casinos. It is definitely a surreal place and to me very American.
Vegas is definitely worth the visit but if you get there and you find yourself bored, take a walk outside the casinos and beyond the strip and you will definitely see the other side of Vegas.
I was once a bit obsessed with Hockney's Joiners, his Pearblossom Hwy., 11 still inspires and impresses me to this day. The process of taking and the intricate nature or putting some of these images together is very appealing, they are like puzzles.
Like many Canadians I love summers and all our seasons. Each passing season is a reminder of how special the one before it was and the next one will be.