Connected To Somebody is a reconstructed photographic series consisting of screenshots taken from various online video chat rooms. It is a study of the sociological aspects created by this relatively new form of global interaction. I am interested in the way that people anonymously present themselves to a random stranger and when lines are crossed between public and private as well as emotional and physical spaces. By capturing the oddities of reactions and interactions, I shed light on a subculture that reveals truths of the human condition. I recontextualize this digital landscape and create my own narrative based on the experience. I give up almost all direction of the image; the other person has complete control over subject, composition, and lighting. The webcam essentially acts as a window into their room. The work currently manifests itself in the form of an 80 page photo book as well as an installation of large format prints.
What You Thought You Knew
There Is A Light That Never Goes Out
There is a Light That Never Goes Out, is an exploration of the dynamic space created by artificial lighting in the darkness. I photographed homes and environments that seem to suggest a human presence, but lack any figures, creating a sense of loneliness. Long exposures emphasize and warp the bold colors of streetlights and windows, casting rich warm and cool shades over the scenes. The dense fog present in some of the images adds to the dreamy and ominous mood of mystery, while the cinematic lighting creates dramatic contrast.
Palinode:noun pal · i · node \'pa-lë-nōd\ (PAL-uh-noad) Definition: 1 : An ode, poem, or song recanting something said previously. 2 : A formal statement of retraction. Origin: From the Greek παλιν: ("palin", meaning 'back') and ωδη ("song"); Late Latin palinōdia: [again, back + ōid (ode)] • • • After working in a slow, technical, and calculated manner while shooting large format photographs, I wanted to do something completely different. I purchased ten disposable cameras in the hopes that I could loosen up and shoot in an entirely different process. I brought a camera everywhere I went, capturing the mundane and boring along with the granduous and graphic. I work to catalog the bizarre nature of my everyday life mixed with a mysterious feeling running throughout, constantly making the viewer question what the subject is and what I am trying to communicate. Equal bits humorous and spooky, this project explores dualing themes of: youth/growing up/love/lust/hatred/confusion/celebration/euphoria/ melancholy/loneliness/friendship/identity.
This is where the title, Palinode, comes from; I propose an idea, then later use another moment to take it back or restate it. The project ultimately culminated into 91 page photo book, hard cover bound, stamped and embossed.
Urban Constellations is a play on the way that man-made things can mimic natural phenomenon. I captured compositions of streetlights in urban areas in a way that the lights would form a sort of constellation. This is a manifestation of the way that stars in the nights sky are grouped into shapes and zodiacs. Each constellation is its own assemblage full of life, much in the way that streetlights are a sign of urban sprawl. There is also a contradiction between the busy city life and quiet night sky.
In the spring of 2012, I visited New York City for the first time. This is a documentation of the way that my eyes explored this new and overwhelming city. I didn't want to photograph as a standard tourist, capturing the common landmarks; I sought to show the theme of the city, the way it really feels. I looked for the small things that define a city: the way the people move, how the light bounces through the towering skyscrapers, nature and industry struggling to coincide.
Alleyways and Alibis
When looking down an alleyway, you can see lights go on for blocks and blocks, creating extreme depth. Yet with all of this depth, we can only see this whole alleyway from one angle, so it technically looks flat. We only see one side of everything. Things can be hidden behind a façade from one direction, we need to actively get out and explore things from different angles. I seek to create beautiful and grand scenes by bringing light to dark, desolate and dirty spaces.
Tucked in the northern woods of Wisconsin far away from civilization, lies the cabin that my grandfather built. Every summer since my childhood, I have retreated up north to the cabin to create new memories and remember the old ones. It feels like a hideaway locked away from the real world, quiet and unmoving. Time moves slower and the sun shines a little brighter.
Beds and Bluffs
When looking at my tangled bed, the wrinkles and folds in the sheets resembled the hilly landscape of my home. My hometown in Wisconsin is surrounded by bluffs and hills that protect the city; much in the same way that the blankets cover and protect me. I explore the detachment that I felt leaving the woods and coming to the city, using beds as a universal symbol for the comfort of home. I created the images by physically stacking the negatives on top of one another in the darkroom, furthering the idea of juxtaposing the two subjects.