One of the primary fascinations with photography from its inception was the unique ability to capture a split second of reality, a ‘decisive moment’. Since then, photographers have looked for different ways to use their cameras to make images that could express more specific and personal ideas, largely thru pre-production and conceptualization. Not always satisfied with the inherent limitations of creating a single static image, I have sought to add some spontaneity and a tangible sense of participation by lengthening the process with post-production techniques such as photo collage and multiple printing, along with analog and digital image manipulation. Capturing images is only the starting point. While there is often a working idea at the outset of my projects, a lot of the creative process occurs during the manipulation of the captured images.
I’ve been making photo collages for decades, pioneering in multiple-image panoramic photography, and spanning a variety of urban and natural landscapes. In my collage work you can notice time and space transitions, unique narratives, and unusual perspectives. With the incorporation of camera movement during long exposures, I am able to add a spontaneous painterly feel, further blurring the notion of a photograph portraying a single instant. It’s a process that has a lot in common with painting. The images are worked on, then reworked again and again.
For some of my 90’s photo collages, this process resulted in the creation of what could be described as ‘imagined perspectives’. In this series, I explore the manipulation of horizons, skylines, buildings, and other elements in the environment to forge new & unexpected viewpoints. Some images are like maps, others are like abstractly sculpted worlds. Most of the images follow their own eccentric logic. Creating collages from Google Earth imagery is a natural next step for this work.
In addition to collage work, I have explored multiple printing, digital image manipulation, digital collage, and a series I call ‘Analog Decay’ – images derived primarily from intentionally damaged film. The common thread through all of this work is the deconstruction of the photograph as an objective visual record, and the creation instead of a subjective work of art, using photography as a means rather than an end.