Don't Take Pictures Issue 1

Page 1

Joshua Meier Andrew Seguin Aëla Labbé Robert Moran Joe Johnson John Grant S. Gayle Stevens Union Jack Creative


Issue 1 Summer 2013

Don't Take Pictures Issue 1 – Summer 2013

Neverland The Photographs of Aëla Labbé

2 Amy Ritchie

The Whale in the Margin An Interview with Andrew Seguin

6 Kat Kiernan

Memory and the Inner Landscape The Photographs of Joshua Meier Getting Started Exploring the Artist/Gallery Relationship

14 Roger Thompson 20 Kat Kiernan

Relics Robert Moran

22 Diana H. Bloomfield

Robert Moran An Interview

28 Diana H. Bloomfield

Let It Snow Joe Johnson's Local Weather Book Review: Calligraphy S. Gayle Stevens John Grant A Studio Visit Union Jack Creative An Interview

Founder/Editor-in-Chief Senior Editor Designer

32 Jason Landry 38 Pam Gilmer 42 Shannon Mohrman 48 Kat Kiernan

Kat Kiernan Roger Thompson Union Jack Creative

Publisher: The Kiernan Gallery, 23B W. Washington St., Lexington, VA 24450


t is my pleasure to introduce you to the premiere issue of Don’t Take Pictures. Falling under the umbrella of The Kiernan Gallery, this first issue has been a true labor of love by myself, our writers and staff, and of course, the photographers themselves, without whom there would be no magazine. I would like to say “thank you” to everyone involved in this project; to those who have helped to spread the word, and to those whose words of encouragement and enthusiasm have been invaluable. The magazine’s title, Don’t Take Pictures, is a reference to the language of photography. The term “taking pictures” is slowly being replaced with “making photographs.” In this magazine we are showcasing the work of photographers who endeavor to make art rather than simply take pictures. Those of you who are familiar with The Kiernan Gallery know that we strive to promote photography, especially the work of emerging photographers, through both conventional and non-traditional models. For me, a publication was a natural addition. Offering a free digital download broadens our audience across the globe. It is my hope that this magazine will serve as a resource and inspiration

for the movers and shakers in the industry, other artists, and those who are just discovering their interest in photography. Staying true to our love of the printed image, I am very proud of the beautifully designed print version. In addition to the magazine itself, each month one of the six featured artists will have one of their images for sale exclusively through The Kiernan Gallery. Each image is roughly 6x9, signed, numbered in an edition no higher than five, and has a sale price no higher than $200. These prints can be purchased through magazine’s website. The full amount of the sale goes to the artist. It is my hope that by offering these affordable art pieces, in addition to the featured portfolios and reviews, that our readers gain a deeper understanding of the work and process, and will be encouraged to begin or add to their art collection. Be sure to visit our website at the beginning of each month for the new print. I hope that you find the first issue of Don’t Take Pictures enjoyable. We welcome your feedback as we continue to fine-tune our discussion of emerging photographers. —Kat Kiernan




Legends of the Fall 2010 Opposite

Ancient Doll’s Hat 2012


The Photographs of Aëla Labbé Amy Ritchie Aëla Labbé makes unusually mysterious photographs in that they act as portals to a variety of delightful universes. A time, a place, a gesture, a fleeting thought; these are the foundations of images where all time and space exists in one moment. A Never Never Land. A rabbit’s hole. A looking glass. Some find Labbé’s depiction of mostly women, children, and landscape to be melancholy or somber, which is true. But they are also playful, joyous, pregnant with possibility. It is her depiction of the inner world expressing



itself in the outer world that makes for such dark matters; dark yes, and light-filled, and paradoxical. Labbé’s unconventional handling of children as subject matter offers perfect example. Being a child is far more complex than our idealized cultural representations or even our own fraught memories will allow. There is magic in the way the unknown discovers itself, dark and vibrant magic. There is dance and myth and the telling of an ever-changing story where girls wear red stockings or cart merry-go-rounds on their heads. Labbé cites Sally Mann’s photographs of her own children as an influence. What she means is that children are capable of much more than cuteness, innocence, or being the capsules of our own need for securing time. They are wildly powerful entities. Their presence

blasts open the gifts of seeing and perceiving. Labbé’s photographs allow for this power. The relaxed body movement of the child at play turns to dance. The mind of the child might be loose or tight, but it is fertile ground that could grow anything. Labbé collaborates respectfully with the children she photographs. Her niece and nephews in particular recur as muses and sources of inspiration, especially in the context and comfort of their family house in Brittany, France. These children bring forth a story with each scene. The stories boast no titles or plots or resolutions, but revel in the simple magic of story. Each of Labbé’s images holds a ton of literary weight. The nuance of light and shadow, the figure out of any specific context, the reverie created by unusual objects, all allude to a long history of Western narrative: Alice in Won-

derland, the Brothers Grimm, even Arthurian legend reside in a single Labbé moment. Her art keeps conversation with the rich history of children’s literature, fantasy fiction, and poetry; creating a meeting ground for them all, touching upon the eternal child. We easily recall those sentences that blazed our young hearts, or the novel that keeps our adultworld encrusted hearts young. Labbé herself cites such literary influences as Russian film director, Andrei Tarkovsky, and Virginia Woolf:

“Safe, safe, safe,” the heart of the house beats proudly. “Long years—” he sighs. “Again you found me.” “Here,” she murmurs, “sleeping; in the garden reading; laughing, rolling apples in the loft. Here we left our treasure—” Stooping, their light lifts the lids upon my eyes. “Safe! safe! safe!” the pulse of the house beats wildly. Waking, I cry “Oh, is this your buried treasure? The light in the heart.”

Stooping, holding their silver lamp above us, long they look and deeply. Long they pause. The wind drives straightly; the flame stoops slightly. Wild beams of moonlight cross both floor and wall, and, meeting, stain the faces bent; the faces pondering; the faces that search the sleepers and seek their hidden joy.

As literature depends on cadence and rhythm, so do Labbé’s photographs. Whether eerily quiet or capturing an action, her photographs rely heavily on dance, as it incorporates the physical movement, or rest, of the body. Labbé is a professional dancer educated in Amsterdam and so brings all the music and

—Virginia Woolf, from “A Haunted House.”




Dé Corps 2011 Opposite (clockwise from top left)

Into Flowers 1 2011

Ghost Dance 2009

Crosses 2012

Oneirodro 2011

poetry of movement to her various universes. She clearly enjoys pushing the possibilities of human form within each scene. When discussing the importance of dance in her creative process, she mentions improvisation: letting the person move as they will. But it is the artist that defines that movement with her choice of capture. And even when an image utilizes stasis, as she says, “the movement is through the emotion.” She tends toward the “quirkiness of movement, and extreme position” noting flexibility and confusion as cohorts in the making. Labbé turned to photography in response to a significantly traumatizing dance company experience. Making photographs ultimately rehabilitated her so that she could dance again. Space and emotion. She considers her dance and photography as parallel work. The



more Labbé enters photography, she says, the more she dances, and the deeper she understands “how to play with the body in the space.” There is also a solitude to dance that pervades Labbé’s images. No matter how static or dynamic the shot, the quietude remains the same. That moment of introspection and loneliness. This place occurs among the children and adults of her photos alike. And even the self-portraits, which blend among the others seamlessly. Labbé considers the selfportrait a specific kind of performance. One she “needs to have the impulse to do” as it is a deep and difficult water to tread, and requires more intimacy and vulnerability from her on both sides of the lens. Then comes the dancer’s relationship to the body, and the woman’s, of course, each with their own

metaphysical intricacies igniting the flame of solitude so inherent to Labbé’s aesthetic. The influence of German modern dancer and choreographer, Pina Bausch, stands out among Labbé’s photographic compositions, which she commonly refers to as “the scene.” Bausch is known for a groundbreaking combination of body movement, sound (which is also the lack thereof ) and elaborate stage setting; all elements utilized and expounded upon in Labbé’s creative process.

the individual collector. Vintage found photos, a branch, dried flowers or lace might be among the treasures found within each box. The exhibition of related objects alongside photographs appears more and more in the contemporary art gallery. However, Labbé enshrines the photograph within the object, and recreates the intimacy and romance of those cherished things long-ago discovered in a grandmother’s girlish hope chest, or an elder’s shoebox of trinkets at the top of his closet.

Besides human body, emotion, and psychology, Labbé’s photographs also rely heavily on the landscape and the object. This aspect of her work pinnacles with what she calls “les coffrets,” or treasure boxes. Each unique coffret contains a Labbé photograph along with other objects created specifically for

If there is nostalgia to Labbé’s aesthetic, so be it. Nostalgia communicates at a very subconscious level, making it the arbiter of the dreams and memories and desires lurking in our dark corners. Labbé’s use of analog cameras, preferably cheap ones with dirty lenses, plays on a newer nostalgia as well.

Though she started out digitally, she prefers the timeless quality of film. And being largely self-taught as a photographer, she continues to play with film’s characteristics, sometimes submerging it in water or salt, to achieve her desired visual affects. Lately Labbé’s photographs might be found as easily on a designer t-shirt or CD cover as in a magazine spread or on gallery walls. Though she remains fairly tentative about where and how her work is seen, she continues to explore the secret passageways of her camera, allowing the images to create their own trajectory, wide-eyed and wonder-full and tenderly curious.

Amy Ritchie is the Director of Candela Books and Gallery in Richmond, Virginia.



Andrew Seguin The Whale in the Margin Kat Kiernan

You define yourself as both poet and photographer. How does one impact the other and which, if they are not equal, is your focus? Yes, I am a poet and photographer. I actively work in both mediums and have for a long time. My focus on each discipline varies depending on what projects are occupying my attention at any given moment, so sometimes I am consumed by writing and sometimes by photography, but I have always allowed both to coexist and intersect. Undoubtedly, my interest in language carries over into my photographic work—The Whale in the Margin, my series of cyanotypes inspired by Moby-Dick, deals directly with the graphic quality of the punctuation in the book, not to mention other facets of the novel. So as a visual artist I often probe language for expressive possibilities, which parallels what I do as a poet. To examine the other side of the question, visual art and photography—how, for example, the smallest aperture of a camera will yield an image with the greatest depth of field—have often provided me with subject matter for poems or, more importantly, frameworks for thinking about and constructing poems. How can language reflect the way a camera captures space? What is the linguistic equivalent of a snapshot? And such questions aside, sometimes poetry and photography are just two different things that I do. Your process appears to be a mixture of illustration subject and photographic process. Please walk us through the process of creating this work. Tails Away, like all the images in The Whale in the Margin, began as a digital collage I created in Photoshop. I first scanned selected pages from Moby-Dick and excised all of the words, leaving the book’s punctuation to fend for itself. To this background of commas, periods, semicolons and dashes I added other elements that I had culled from old dictionaries and illustrated versions of Moby-Dick. Once I had created a collage that I was satisfied with, I rendered it as a digital negative and printed that negative as a cyanotype, which yielded a unique print. The process was a nice synthesis of the digital and the handmade.

How does working in alternative processes inspire the content of your work? Because I don’t use a camera to generate negatives when I’m making cyanotypes, my images need not come from the ostensible, observable world: I can investigate other means of making photographs. Certainly, that freedom led me to explore the possibilities of a collage-based process, which I used in both The Whale in the Margin and an earlier project. As for the cyanotype process itself, its gamut of blues and whites was ideally suited for a project dealing with the sea and a malevolent white whale. Your series The Whale in the Margin is very clearly based off of Moby-Dick. What about this story inspired you to create this series? Moby-Dick is one my favorite books, and it floors me on so many levels: its prose is stunning, its symbolism is epic and its structure is somehow both manic and controlled. For me it’s a book of excess and obsession, and I had originally wanted to strip it to its skeleton by creating a version of it that consisted only of its punctuation—a minimalist homage, a musical score. But that idea only took me so far. I realized I wouldn’t do the book justice unless I created images that referenced the characters and the concerns of the book, including self-consumption, hunting something to extinction, the power of nature and of evil, and the human need for a quest. Finally, what does success mean to you as an artist? It means being constantly driven to uncover new ideas and having— or creating—the resources to realize those ideas. Kat Kiernan is the Owner and Director of The Kiernan Gallery in Lexington, Virginia.

Tails Away 2011





Hand to Mouth 2011





The Chase 2011



Queequeg 2011



Fedallah 2011



Reading 2011



memory and the inner landscape of Joshua meier Roger Thompson



Lineage 2003

Joshua Meier, in reminding us of the strange and sometimes disquieting variations of our own inner landscapes, orients us to our past.


he expansive space of western Oklahoma focuses the mind. The long vistas and the open landscape force the eye to find nuances, to locate small distortions and strange disruptions to the horizon, in order to clarify some sense of where it is and where it might have been. Variations within the endless plain of red clay, yellow and cracking grasses, and barren shrub stand out like beacons, and the mind memorizes, intuitively, an unusually large rock, a slight mound of earth, a broken branch swinging in a dry breeze. Each becomes a landmark. A signpost. A marker of memory and certainty and place. Each becomes, ultimately, a geographic pole around which our inner compass spins, quivers, and finally settles. Joshua Meier, in reminding us of the strange and sometimes disquieting variations of our own inner landscapes, orients us to our past and asks us to recollect memories that, for all their supposed certainty, shift and change each time we risk speaking about them. Meier was raised in western Oklahoma, and the austere landscape of that territory marks his work, even if not always literally. His photographs challenge us to attune to those singular moments in our memory that shape our lives, and they provide haunting glimpses into dark corners of our minds. While Meier experimented with a wide range of art forms in his youth, photography allowed him to access those places, to re-imagine the signposts we sometimes only briefly glimpse, and to make sense of the world around him. From an early age, he focused on the construction of scene, attuning to odd juxtapositions or surprising compositions. He remembers photographing a semi-nude young woman in an abandoned and collapsing house, and he remembers pairing odd objects for still lifes. From 1993 to 1994, having just finished high school, he spent a year in the Netherlands, and there, he saw new possibilities for his life. He enrolled in Rogers State College back in Oklahoma to pursue art, but he abandoned school and headed to the mountains to work in Yellowstone before settling in Missoula, Montana, in 1996. The transition to Missoula

from Oklahoma was a statement about new possibilities and rewriting his own story. He apprenticed with Raymond Meeks and explored not simply the complex (and serendipitous) photographic processes for which Meeks is well known, but also the complex inner voice that was driving him to pursue a career in photography. Meier’s work began to rapidly gain attention. He first enrolled in and then became an instructor at the Rocky Mountain School of Photography (whose best known itinerant photographers include Jay Dusard and Dennis Darling), and in 2005, he returned to Oklahoma, ultimately pursuing his MFA at the University of Tulsa. Throughout this time, his work drifted toward narrative and metaphor, and he began work on an ongoing body of images called The Parables. The Parables has been exhibited in various forms across the country, and its hallmark is dramatic, at times absurdist, scenes that highlight almost archetypal figures on ruinous landscapes. In “Necessary Burdens,” for example, a figure labors up a scree carrying a thin, translucent construction that, despite the exertion of the figure, appears light, airy, and luminescent. Similarly, in “Wiman’s Harvest,” a field hand harvests enormous balls of twine. In both, the angle of vision is from slightly below, as though we are looking up at their labor, watching it from a small space beneath and away from them. We sense their exertion and their power, and we are reminded that we too carry absurdities, that our harvests may leave us wandering away with new creations on our shoulders. Meier presses us to consider what each image might teach us—a parable, by definition, teaches a lesson—and Meier’s lesson may be something more like witnessing and encouragement to find ways to see and believe the impossible stories of others as they make their way in a fallen world. We find a deep connection and relationship with his figures when we allow our minds and hearts to connect with their stories. The lingering power of the story remains the heart of Meier’s most recent work, but unlike



The Parables, which demands that a story be filled in to make sense of the scene in front, his new work, entitled [Un]Remembering, unmasks the stories that have already shaped us. Meier’s sense of a shared memory dominates his new work, and its use of repetition, in both subtle and explicit ways, recalls the ways that we retell and re-imagine the stories of our own lives. The haunting young girl in “Watching Her Watching Me,” for example, stares back at us in rows and columns, each time slightly altered, but her gaze does not change. Distortions in each image, birthed from dark room chance, force a reconsideration of the young woman and her story. Still, she seems oddly stable and permanent. Her umbrella never lilts, but the space around her darkens or brightens, and sometimes streaks or clouds, as we move from scene to scene trying to remember what it is we have seen. In “Versions of Unraveling” a similar stability in the midst of differences dominates. The “versions” challenge us to rethink what actu-



ally has been unraveled. The spool suspended above the hand does not, itself, unwind. Instead, the printing of the images changes, and trying to determine what may have unraveled becomes an exercise in observing the light, color, and filter through which we witness the scene. Each time we see the spool, suspended over the expectant hand, we have to rethink what we want to say about it and what we think may have led us to that moment. Meier, however, is not examining a cliché in these images. He’s doing much more than simply rewriting the idea that how we remember things is filtered through our own individual lenses. Instead, the work seems to be a retelling of stories, a repetition that circles around an idea in an attempt to make sense of it. The subject of the image holds all of the retellings, and each version of the story, always referring to the ones around it, lifts gently at its edges to suggest that it may fall away entirely as new stories are told.

Above Left

Versions of Unraveling 2013 Above Right

Watching Her Watching Me 2013 Opposite

Wiman’s Harvest 2005




Necessary Burdens 2010 Opposite

Lower Jaw 2012

Meier clearly has deep control over not only the photographic process, preferring to print in silver gelatin as he experiments with light and texture, but also the presentation of the image. One gets the sense that, even in the repetition of the printings, we are witnessing a rather purposeful building toward an idea. Still, to discuss Joshua Meier’s work in terms of the control of photographic processes, or even creative processes, inevitably undermines the impression of his work on the imagination. Meier’s photographs capture us and demand our attention. We know we are seeing something that requires us to say



something, even if, in Whitman’s words, only to ask “whose?” Despite the fact that much of his work lingers at the edge of metaphor, often frozen in a stark and lonely landscape, it seems always eerily familiar, as though we are remembering some place we’ve been or some life we’ve lived. We recognize the world he is examining. We feel it within ourselves. We want to tell its story, even if we can’t quite say where it happened or why it mattered to us. Roger Thompson is an art critic and English professor at Stonybrook University in Long Island, New York.



Getting Exploring the Artist/Gallery Relationship Kat Kiernan


or many artists looking to exhibit their work with a gallery, the dynamics of the professional relationship can be unclear. The role of a gallerist is to present an artist’s work in in the best environment possible and help grow their collector base. Artists should understand a few elements of the artist/gallery relationship. Promoting shows, speaking with potential collectors, and creating and maintaining mailing lists are just as much the artist’s responsibility as it is the gallery’s. Before you begin picking out your outfit for the opening reception…how should you start? Every gallery is different and everyone has different philosophies on how to show, make, promote, and sell art. Coupled with my own thoughts and opinions, I have asked three gallery owners how they prefer to be approached by artists. Here are the most common steps to establishing a gallery relationship and how to go about them.

more excited about you. Brie Castell, owner of Castell Photography in Asheville, North Carolina, told The Kiernan Gallery, “Artists should do their homework on which gallery is appropriate for their work in terms of style. Sending [Castell Photography] your portfolio when it is the opposite of what we show is insulting because it’s clear this artist never took the time to learn about who we are.” If a gallery only exhibits the work of very famous artists, does not show photography, or has stated that they are not currently accepting submissions, sending them your work is a waste of your time and theirs. Furthermore, if an artist cannot take twenty minutes to examine the gallery’s website and read their mission, why should the gallery take the time to look at the artist’s work? Spend time researching the places you want to send your photographs, and be honest with yourself about how the gallery would view your work. The gallery will do the same.


marketing materials

Just as not every assignment is right for every commercial photographer, not every gallery will suit your work. In order to create the best artist/gallery relationship possible, you need to be excited about the kind of photography and photographers that the gallery exhibits. Conversely, this will make them

Every gallery owner I spoke with prefers to be addressed by name rather than “To Whom it May Concern” or “Dear Sir/Madam.” Addressing someone so vaguely proves that you have not spent enough time learning about their gallery, particularly if the gallery shares their name. I like to receive properly



addressed email inquiries on the best way to submit to the gallery. This gives me a chance to elaborate on the gallery’s mission and give the artist the most complete information before they send me their work. Sophisticated and well-presented materials for review are a must. Many galleries review submissions in groups, so it is important that the presentation of your work grab the reviewer’s attention. Jennifer Schwartz of Jennifer Schwartz Gallery in Atlanta, Georgia looks for a properly addressed introduction letter, a CD of images in an envelope with the artists’ branding, and an outstanding postcard or small sample print. She has zero tolerance for badly presented submission materials. A blank CD in a cardboard mailer will certainly go straight into her trashcan. Aside from screaming “unprofessional,” it can also scream “virus!” I like to receive packets in a nice or handmade folder with a one-page letter of introduction explaining why the artist thinks his or her work is a good fit for one of The Kiernan Galler's solo shows. This packet should also include a postcard, a one or two page resumé, a disc of images, and a sheet of thumbnails so that I can get a sense of the work prior to putting the CD into my computer.

Started presenting Your Work Artists who walk into a gallery without an appointment and expect to show their work are generally not well received. Gallery owner Brie Castell is less inclined to look at work when an artist comes into the gallery with “his/her portfolio in hand without an appointment.” Similarly, Jason Landry, owner of Panopticon Gallery in Boston, Massachusetts says, “My number one pet peeve is when [artists] show up at the gallery unannounced, circle around looking at the show but act like a shark waiting for the appropriate moment to tell me that they are a photographer and can I look at their portfolio right now. Please don’t do this.” Personally, I do not like when an artist—even someone who has an appointment—shows me their work on their phone, tablet, or other electronic device. Because the photographs I exhibit are seen as prints on the wall, it is important for me to see the quality of the printed work. Jason Landry says, “Email me first with a link to your website or 2–3 small JPGs. If I like them, you will hear from me.” Be sure to follow up if you have not heard from the gallery for a few months.

rejection If, after having submitted your materials or having had your work reviewed, you receive

a rejection letter or phone call, understand that this is a part of the process. Much like interviewing for a job, the fit needs to be right for both you and the gallery.

rection in which you are heading as an artist. Mention that you have past and in-progress work available, but in order to avoid confusion, don’t lay everything out at once.

There are many reasons why a gallery might not accept your work. They might feel that you do not have the exhibition history they are looking for, or that you need to further develop your bodies of work. Often they are simply not looking for new artists. Regardless of their response, it is a good idea to add the gallery to your mailing list (with the option to unsubscribe) to keep them updated with new exhibitions, works, and press. Do not, under any circumstances, reply in a rude or snarky manner. I can assure you that a little politeness goes a long way, and conversely, that an inappropriate response will not quickly be forgotten.

It is important to remember that you are looking to establish a relationship where you will be sharing your work with that gallery on a regular basis. Decisions about the edit, print media, print size, editioning, or framing should be made with guidance from the pros. Framers know how to frame, printers know how to print, and galleries know how to price for their clientele. Take their advice into consideration while maintaining your vision. Showing work in a gallery that has its own aesthetic is a partnership. These discussions will help both parties decide if your visions of how the work should be realized in its final form mesh. If they do not, then maybe they are not the right gallery for you.

Establishing a relationship If the gallery has responded positively to your inquiry and has set up a meeting or asks for sample prints, it is important that you present work that is finished. This means exhibition-quality prints. Do not send framed pieces unless you are asked (yes, this happens). It is a good idea to bring a previous body of work and some current worksin-progress so your reviewer can see past work, the work you submitted, and the di-

The best and most honest advice I have is to view the gallery/artist relationship as just that, a relationship. Remember that galleries want to help artists succeed. Criticism and guidance are in the best interest of the work and it is in the best interest of the artist to further their exposure before, during, and after each exhibition.



Robert Moran’s Relics Diana H. Bloomfield



Pink Radio

What do we leave behind when we simply let go— abandoning those objects we once held so dear?


obert Moran’s series of portraits, entitled Relics, reveals the cultural artifacts of our lives in a new light, as if seen for the first time. Anyone over the age of 50 will fondly remember, and probably lived with, many of these simple, functional objects: a rotary telephone, a Motorola radio, a record player, an Underwood typewriter, a tin milk pail. If you are younger, you will undoubtedly know their more modern, more efficient, and much sleeker descendants. At first glance, I was struck by the sheer beauty of these objects, at once familiar and foreign. Photographed in the exact same way, each image is in muted colors and made square, perched on a dark wooden shelf against a plain, cement-gray wall. In soft natural light, they cast a shadowy, fluid version of themselves, suggesting their own ephemerality. Removed from the context of their every day lives, these seemingly simple objects showcase early- to mid-twentiethcentury designs and suddenly seem inspired and fresh. Each possesses an undeniably exquisite form, even when the original function was banal and is now outmoded: an apothecary bottle, a bowling pin, an oscillating table fan, an oversized scale. By photographing them singly, as though for formal portraits, Moran elevates their value and importance. Not merely objects to be admired, they are tangible remnants of a well-lived past, offering us insights and weaving stories all their own. When Moran talks about these objects, he refers to them as “collaborators.” For him, they run parallel and bear witness to the events in our own lives. He likes to imagine some of the people who might have owned these items, and the stories—the “secret histories”—they hold. He speaks of these items as having have been “used, loved, and discarded,” almost like lost relationships from a past life. He has clearly bonded with these artifacts from another time and place, and he presents them to us lovingly. We, too, can construct our own narratives that might have surrounded these objects.

To the viewer, this type of documentation might simply evoke a wistful return to a fondly remembered past—whether we actually lived in that past, or, after viewing these images, only wish we had. They remind us of “the good old days” when the world was supposedly slower, kinder, more innocent, and full of promise and hope. Like a great archeological find, these artifacts tell us where we have been as a society and culture; more importantly, perhaps, they tell us how, culturally, we have transitioned and adapted. The ideas and concepts behind them still exist, albeit in their more modern forms. What will the documentarians of tomorrow make of today’s everyday objects? Perhaps they will highlight the inventiveness and ingenuity of 21st century technological advances, from the sleekest of smartphones, where access to the world is measured in seconds, to simple and elegant software design. The culture we live in right now might not be simply judged by its own thoughtfully-created objects, but, rather, by its more abstract and undeniable innovation and its willingness to change and adapt in an ever-evolving world. Perhaps those future documentarians will image a world where their viewers will stand and stare, awestruck, at what once was, where the stories our artifacts tell are about the future.

Tea Pot Featured images by Robert Moran made 2011–2013.



Apothecary Bottle



Bowled Over



Family Scale



Hunter Century



An Interview with Robert Moran Diana H. Bloomfield

Hi Robert. I’m sure you’ve been asked this question any number of times, but I’m going to ask it again and perhaps make it a bit more challenging by turning it into a multi-part question. So... how did you get started in photography, and has photography been your sole career? If not, what did you do in your past or current life, career-wise, that may (or may not) be contributing to your photographic interests and chosen subject matter? At the age of 12, my parents bought me a Super 8 movie camera for Christmas. I remember my first project which I titled, “The Golden Isle.” For the opening shot, I constructed a miniature island out of sod and small plants, then placed it in a kiddie pool filled with water that had been dyed a deep shade of blue. The neighborhood kids were enlisted to be the actors—arriving on the island slashing vegetation as they made their way into the deep interior (actually the Maine woods). Then I crudely animated small dinosaur models for the explorers to encounter. They all opened their mouths and held the sides of their faces—much like the Edvard Munch painting “The Scream.” Needless to say, the results were pathetic, but that camera is what got me interested in photography. A few years later, I bought my first 35mm SLR camera, and when I entered college I decided to major in fine art. That led to a passion for photography; I’ve been shooting ever since. After college I bounced around the country working a variety of jobs. I came to the realization that I’d never be happy working



for anyone else, so I opened a small business that I ran for more than twenty years. I frequently used photographs in marketing the business—fashion shoots, product shots. I stayed involved in the creative process by designing many of the graphics used on items that were sold through the business. All of that—learning about business, designing, and photographing products—contributed to some of the skills I employ in my photography business today. Fortunately I was able to find time to travel, and more importantly, time to pursue personal projects while I continued to study photography on my own. Your series, Relics, I find particularly intriguing on a number of levels. You describe these images as “portraits” and the items as our “collaborators,” offering us solace and comfort in times of need. You really seem to have personalized these items, almost anthropomorphizing them. Would you care to elaborate on that? I consider these images to be portraits. It’s my belief that a good portrait captures an impression of someone or something that reveals more than what’s on the surface. Working in my studio with no deadlines gave me the opportunity to spend a lot of time to experiment, reposition, and work the lighting until everything came together. During that time, my subjects became very familiar. Early on I began to think of them as having personalities. They oozed a secret history, and many had battle scars—similar to those we acquire with age. You could say I formed a kind of bond with many of the objects. The way I feel

about them is difficult to explain. They’re all different and I like some more than others, but I can’t imagine ever giving them away. I am personally fascinated by all that is about time, which is part of what appeals to me about so much of your work. And, again, speaking of Relics, the very name suggests that which has survived the passage of time, whether that’s objects, customs, or a way of life. So, in looking through your various series, what I found interesting is that much of your imagery seems to be about the passage of time, displacement, and a pervading sense of a past lost. There’s a real beauty in all the “relics” you reveal to us. Do you have a longing for a less fast, less efficient, less sleek 21st century kind of life, or is this simply a fascination with what once was—or what could be? I embrace new technology and thoroughly take advantage of it. There has never been a time in history with so many possibilities to communicate, to learn, to travel, and to chart one’s own course. I’m happy to be alive to experience all that. But in many ways, I do have a strong longing for “the way life used to be.” With home invasions on the rise, I miss the days when my house didn’t have an alarm system; doors could be left unlocked; I knew my neighbors. I grew up watching television shows like Adventures in Paradise and The Andy Griffith Show. Although I know they weren’t accurate depictions of real life, there seemed to be a kind of innocence back then that we’ve lost somewhere along the way.

Whenever possible, I travel to remote places in hopes of experiencing some of those feelings I had growing up. Now and then it works, but only on rare occasions. When I first looked at your series, Relics, I was struck by the strong graphic design elements of these items—each one clearly “a thing of beauty.” Taking these items out of context, you obviously want us to see their inherent beauty. And while you mention our consideration of their “essence,” their scuffs and rust and cracks—and all they were meant to do—you never talk about their actual beauty. Is there a reason for that? And do you think, in our current “throw-away” culture, that today’s items will be valued enough to be saved and documented—much like this? As far as not mentioning their inherent beauty, I decided to leave that up to the viewer. Personally, I think they’re very beautiful. But beauty is only one of the components that compels me to find and create these images. I want to jog people’s memories, to possibly take them back to an earlier time. Although nostalgia may not apply to younger audiences, I’m hoping to show them objects that have played important roles in people’s lives. Taking it one step further, I love the idea that all the objects have a story to tell. I find that concept mysterious and like to imagine some of the people that owned, used, treasured, and, ultimately—in many cases—replaced them with newer versions. To answer your last question, I’m not sure if today’s items will be valued enough to be saved and documented like this. Most of the objects in this body of work were used over a long period of time. They truly were valued and many people formed an attachment to, and—in many cases—a dependence on them. Everything moves so much faster now. We’re constantly bombarded with ads for the latest and greatest. Unfortunately, too, we live in a throw-away society, where so many things seem to be short-lived and easily

disposable. For someone just starting out in photography, or thinking about wanting to be a photographer, what’s the smartest and best advice you can offer? What do you wish you had done sooner, or better, or differently in your photographic career? There are better people than me out there to offer advice, but I’m happy to share some of my thoughts. At one time I used to work for the Photorealist painter Richard Estes. He advised me to look at all kinds of photography, to go to museums, galleries, etc. in order to get a really good sense of what’s out there. I took that advice, and I’m convinced that it’s helped me tremendously. I believe one of the best things a photographer can do is study the history of photography. That can be done in school, but with all the resources available in libraries and online, it can also be self-taught. One big disadvantage of being self-taught is the lack of dialogue with others pursuing the same interest. Communicating and portfolio-sharing with other photographers is a great way to learn. If you can pull off going to a photography school or university, do it. Taking workshops and learning from some of the world’s best photographers is widely available. Somewhere along the way, you need to learn how to market your work. Chances are there’s nobody out there looking for you. You need to connect with people who can help you get your work out there. Portfolio reviews are a great way to start. Also, don’t be timid to try new things. Learning alternative processes is exciting and can produce amazing results. Being aware of what’s happening in the market can be helpful, but finding your own voice is essential to success. Being influenced by other photographers can be good thing; most of us are or have been. But don’t try to imitate them. To sum up, to succeed in this very competitive market you need talent, passion, a strong work ethic, and the ability to create unique

bodies of work. And one final thing—you need to find a way for your work to reach an audience. Although I’ve thoroughly enjoyed photographing for over four decades and am very happy with my progress, I wish I had attended a good photography school. It also would have been a good idea to start shooting professionally earlier on in my life. But I don’t dwell on what I should have done. My life experiences have made me who I am today, so rather than spend time thinking about what I could have done differently, I work hard and look to the future. Is all your work totally self-motivated and fine-art based, or do you take on commercial work? If so, why, and—if not—why not? I’ve done a limited amount of commercial work for others in the past, and I didn’t gain much satisfaction from it. And due to the fact that I owned my own business, I didn’t need the income in order to put food on the table. But it can be a very good way to make a living, and I’m not knocking it. It’s working as a photographer and in my opinion, that beats almost any job I can think of. And this is a wonderfully thought-provoking question The Kiernan Gallery asked me, and, in fact, asks of all their artists. I liked it so much, I’m now going to ask you. What does success mean to you, Robert? Thought-provoking, yes—but my answer is simple. When I was young I believed success meant making a lot of money and traveling to exotic places. As I’ve grown older, I’ve come to the realization that success for me means balancing my personal life with family and friends, while continuing to do work that satisfies my creative drive.

Diana H. Bloomfield is a photographer, art critic, and independent curator based in Raleigh, NC.



Let It Snow Joe Johnson's Local Weather Jason Landry




t’s winter in the Midwest, and Joe Johnson is setting up his tripod and large format view camera, a Linhof Master Technika 4x5 inch view camera, to capture another blissful scene of snowy paradise. He checks the bubble in the fluorescent level––the camera is level. He breaks out a soft cloth and gently wipes, removing the fog from his Schneider lens. His fingers are tingling now as he attaches the cable release. He gets under the dark cloth with his loupe and takes a look. Condensation begins to form on the ground glass from his breath. He makes a few adjustments, loads the film, cocks the shutter, and then presses firmly on the cable release button. Kansas and Missouri are not the most idyllic places on the planet to capture snow. To figure that out, all we have to do is look at some of history’s greatest photographic pioneers, like Vittorio Sella, Bradford Washburn or that guy with the last name of Adams—the ones who pointed similar lenses, but at vast, snowcapped vistas. Johnson, however, isn’t interested in mountains: he’s looking to capture the weather. He is not a storm chaser, and indeed, he doesn’t appear to chase anything; rather, he analyzes what remains after the fact of the storm. The use of the word “placelessness” in his artist statement tells us these images could be anywhere. They strive toward the universal. Johnson is not in the Northeast, where snow drifts in the winter usually will cover all lowlying objects and bushes, and he sure is not in Buffalo, New York, where the lake-effect snow sometimes engulfs cars or swallows small houses. There, “shoveling out” means starting from the roof of your house and digging downward through the drifts. In Kansas, far from the piling snow of the east, Johnson examines subtle contrasts instead of the

Two Homes, Manhattan, KS 2011



mounding certainty of the snow. He works with only a dusting to a few inches of snow on the ground, and he captures something remarkable: some drab of texture here or there that will pop out of the fluff of snow, arresting the viewer’s eye and inviting them to continue looking. What are we looking for ultimately in an image made on a snowy day? A soft and white palette unites most of the images in his series Local Weather. When I look at some of the images, I see ikebana, the Japanese form of flower decorations. By definition, ikebana is a disciplined art form in which nature and humanity are brought to-



gether. Look at “Office, Manhattan, KS” for a moment. I’m not seeing ikebana because of the stark, stripped and barren tree that stands dead center in the foreground. When I look closely at this particular image, I see harmony and balance in everything about the photograph. Each object, whether it is the window with the reflected buildings, the tree, the old sign with the black edge protruding from the building, the random shrubs scattered about, or the light poles off in the distance, they all exist to create a greater landscape for our marvel. Without the window or the telephone poles and power line in the distance that bookend this image, all we would have

would be a foreshortened and uneventful white-washed vista with one question to ask: when is spring coming? Like ikebana, many of Johnson’s photographs are minimalistic. Desolate is another word that comes to mind, since there are no signs of humans, only the traces of what once was. “Factory Site, Manhattan, KS” illustrates this desolation, and so does “Parking Lot, Columbia, MO”—I picture what was once maybe a former air force base or even a city—abandoned and left to its fate. The sense of desolation is highlighted in some


Factory Site, Manhattan, KS 2009 Top Right

Office, Manhattan, KS 2009 Bottom Right

Snow Pile, Manhattan, KS 2009



Top Left

Frozen Crop, near MacDowell, KS 2011 Bottom Left

Parking Lots, Columbia, MO 2011 Opposite

Access Road, Fort Riley, KS 2011



of the photographs that hold my attention the most, ones with the least detail—dark images. In the image “Two Homes, Manhattan, KS,” what looks like an orange glow cast upon the corner peak of a roof draws me in. I’m less concerned if there is snow on the ground because the orange glow reminds me of summer, of long summer nights, and for a brief second, I’m daydreaming back to when I was a thirteen year old kid in New Hampshire getting a first kiss by a girl in the field behind our house—the rolling fields of wheat and hay play a constant reminder of life. And that is the paradox of Johnson’s work. It shows us that man exists, even in the desola-

tion of a winter storm, when time seems to stop and life seems to disappear. Construction stops, 18-wheelers leave their trailers at the truck stops or in empty lots until the roads are clear because no one needs a jackknifed trailer stalling up traffic on Route 63. It’s not easy to make a good picture of snow. Harry Callahan had a few gems, and when thinking about contemporary artists, I think of Lisa M. Robinson and her series Snowbound. The tones have to be just right to capture snow. If they’re not, you end up with either a high-key photograph with a diminished tonal range and no detail, or a dark

gray mess, and we all know snow doesn’t look dirty unless a plow has already been by a few times. Johnson battled both ends of the spectrum in his images and won. As he communicates through his statement on Local Weather, he’s “not so much concerned with geography or topography, but with volume.” His large-scale prints speak volumes and so do the objects that appear throughout. Jason Landry is the owner of Panopticon Gallery in Boston.






he eighth book of the 11+1 series by North Light Press, S. Gayle Stevens’s book Calligraphy intertwines two ideas: beautiful line drawings and the memento mori. A Chicago-based artist, Stevens works in alternative photographic processes, specifically the wetplate collodion tintype, and in her artist statement for the series, Stevens links the “sparse yet expressive” brushstrokes in calligraphy to the photogram of a black silhouette featured on each 5-inch square tintype. The body of work, then, becomes a message on antiquity and decay. Each tintype displays one plant or specimen that Stevens found on walks near her home or while traveling. Each item had been discarded and overlooked, and Stevens’s collecting and photographing them seems inspired by the seventeenth century “cabinets of curiosity,” the forerunner to our modern-day museums. In her photographs, Stevens creates a memento mori, curating her own exhibit of curious plants and animals that, though seemingly preserved in the photographic process, turn toward impermanence. Much like the subjects of her art, the tintypes themselves are prone to decay; left unvarnished, each plate will slowly tarnish over time.

ligraphy with North Light Press is fitting. The press’s 11+1 series is made up of 5x7 clothbound, limited-edition, hardcover books. Each has eleven pages of high-quality, single print reproductions of the artist’s work and a single original print that is signed and numbered by the photographer. As part of the series, Calligraphy maintains the same size and basic layout of the first seven books, but the original work included with each book is not a signed and numbered printing of an image. Instead, it is a 2-inch square tintype that is part of a larger collage of 100 tintypes. Each piece stands alone, but in size it reminds us that it is part of something else. It is a letter that has been cast off from a larger concept, a calligraphic symbol that will remain always and essentially a piece of a collection that can never be put back together again. Like the memento mori, it can only glancingly remind us of what we may have lost. Pam Gilmer is a student at Southern Virginia University and an intern at The Kiernan Gallery. This is her first published article.

Buddhist conceptions of impermanence are central to the Chinese culture that gave birth to calligraphy, and while the bold lines of many of the Stevens’ images hearken to an ancient written text, the ancestry is not literal. Instead, Stevens uses the discarded objects of our lives as text and form to provide some sense of the language of decay. Comparisons between her preferred historical processes, ancient Chinese drawings, and seventeenthcentury taxonomic exhibits come together to forge strong connections between the past and present. By becoming more aware of the ancient, the outdated, and the overlooked and discarded, we become more attuned and aware of the present. We may even consider more carefully what we preserve and what we disregard. Given the way that Stevens’ work asks us to consider what we value, her publishing Cal-

Calligraphy 11+1 Two-inch wet plate colloidal tintype photogram




PICTURESCalligraphy Inside S. DON’T GayleTAKE Stevens’





A Studio Visit with John Grant Shannon Mohrman


arnering quite a bit of attention for his work with botanicals over the past several years, John Grant did not actually begin to pursue a career in photography until later in life. After working in both the fine arts publishing and tech industries, he began to experiment with flowers and scanners, merging a love of the outdoors and a fascination with technology, and he was eventually inspired to focus on his art. The evolution of Grant’s work is intriguing. One theme morphs into another before your eyes, though you might not immediately see the connections without spreading out his sprawling portfolio in front of you. Browsing through his work, I immediately fell in love with his series The Language of Water and arranged to meet with Grant in his studio to talk about his artistic process. Nestled off the street, up a long driveway, Grant’s airy workspace abuts his modest brick home. I was welcomed in through the glass-paned French doors by his wife, Stacey, whose sunny disposition shone through her eyes as we made small talk. John emerged from the small computer room connecting the house to the studio as Stacey offered me

homemade iced tea. In person, Grant effuses a relaxed and comfortable charm; certainly a bit of a departure from his concise and professional email correspondence. Gesturing toward the large work table in the center of the studio and the wall across from it, he began to talk about the prints he had pulled out: “The ink is so beautiful, it’s like charcoal.” Some were scattered across the table, and others were pinned to the wall. They showed The Language of Water in many different stages, from the experimentation stage to fully edited prints. The wellworn table was obviously used heavily, as was the wall, which showed dozens of pock marks from previous pinnings. He briefly pointed out the hallmarks of his space—a large format printer, a slop sink with a small work area nearby to prepare and clean up ink—and offered to show me the backyard where he has been working recently. After I complimented the neatly-manicured garden, Grant admitted that that was only due to the fact that he and Stacey had held their nuptials there a few weeks prior. Scattered around the perimeter of the grass were several beds of flowers, trees, and bushes, each containing one or two large glass vessels of water. Most


Femme Fatale 2010 Right

John Grant’s Studio Photo by Kat Kiernan




John Grant Photo by Stacey Evans Top Opposite

Swimmer 2009 Bottom Opposite

Wigged Out 2010

held various kinds of submerged flora with one including a small, antlered skull. Though it was now easy to see the connection between his earlier botanical work and his subsequent experiments with water and then ink, I was still curious as to how he finally made the conceptual leap between the various subjects. He explained: “I was doing these flowers and doing those underwater and putting different things in the water. I started looking at colorizing the water that I was putting the flowers in, and everything I’ve been doing lately has been simpler and simpler.” Grant insisted that his own curiosity was really the driving force behind the shift in focus: “I like to experiment and observe both subjects and processes. Best case, I like to show things we know and observe every day in a way that makes us see them in a fresh light.” He then offered to show me an ink demonstration, to which I happily agreed. “Different times of day,” he began, “as the sun gets lower, you get these bombs of light that come through. It’s pretty extraordinary.” Wearing purple nitrile gloves to avoid staining his hands, Grant produced a small bottle of indigo ink and briefly explained his method of placing ink in the water before pouring a few large drops into one of the glass cylinders.



Watching ink unfurl into water is eternally mesmerizing. Tendrils of color snake their way through the clear depths, weaving together and intermixing until they finally dissipate into nothing. “You see how it’s isolating certain things out?” Grant observed, “It’s really cool that way.” Grant has found that bleaching the water is the simplest way to clear it of previous attempts without having to disturb the foliage. The remainder of the bleach from his last session had collected at the bottom of the cylinder, creating an impenetrable barrier for the ink. Grant decided to add some ink to the vessel that contained the skull as well. It was sitting in a different position in the sunlight and did not contain any bleach. Though both were beautiful, you could immediately tell the difference. Without bleach, the ink was free to swirl and unfold unfettered, eventually wrapping tightly around the flowers’ blossoms and the antlers. As the ink finally settled, we decided to move back into the studio to take a closer look at the prints he had taken out: “They started out in color and that just didn’t do it for me. Then I started working in black and white and looking at different segments of them. I thought the power came through in the black

and white. The simplicity of things.” Grant loves utilizing much of the newest photographic technology, fully embracing its ability to enhance his already gorgeous images. He reflected on his own art: “If I were good at it I would be a painter. So there is that influence that comes in. I’m not one who’s a traditionalist with photography. In fact, I’m just the opposite really, I’m here to see what the new tools can produce.” We made our way into the computer room, and Grant showed me the extent of the raw images. We are so conditioned to pick shapes and forms out of the abstract that I was finding faces and creatures in practically every picture without any editing whatsoever. “I’ll show you how many I did to get anything out of it,” he says, ”but these kinds of figures started coming up. I call this one 'The Swimmer.' They were really there. I didn’t manipulate that. I started seeing interesting things in them.” It was also fascinating to see the images cascading down the screen, a sight that no one but Grant had access to. Recognizing the inherent beauty of this pseudo stop motion movie, he actually created a short film of it set to a classical soundtrack, the melancholy lilting of the violin a perfect fit with the motions of the ink. Even though he has since moved on to other projects, it was plain to see how much Grant cared about this series and how much he truly loves what he does. Following his passion was the best decision he could have made, and though there is something to be said about pursuing a calling in your youth, no one can deny that he’s in a great place in his life. “I think there is a disadvantage to being older for certain,” he says, “but I’m really happy with where I am with that, with luck, with timing. You never know when that is going to happen.” Shannon Mohrman is a freelance writer and opera singer from Houston, Texas.



Treadmill 2010



Devilish 2010



Union Jack Creative As a gallerist, I constantly receive promotional materials from artists: show cards, business cards, gallery submission packages, and so forth. Some are wonderful and some are uninspired. A photographer with a poorly designed promotional piece will not get the same attention as a photographer with an elegant, consistent brand that reflects who they are as an artist. And just as photographers are their own worst editors, many of them should also consider seeking outside design assistance for their promotional materials. Kate Ziegler and Jack Romano are the owners of Union Jack Creative, a Boston-based design company that specializes in customized promotional materials and websites. We asked them to share their thoughts on design and the many ways that visual artists can benefit from collaborating with professional designers rather than going it alone. —Kat Kiernan

What is the focus of Union Jack Creative? Union Jack Creative is focused on creating custom designs based on clients’ vision, audience and budget. We work from scratch to figure out what works best for each project, and we translate clients’ hints and ideas into a concrete, elegant final product. Unlike other businesses in need of design, photographers must put their own aesthetics at the forefront. This means working with a designer whose



visual style meshes well with theirs. How does UJC view working with those who are also visually inclined? How much collaboration is involved? Working with visual artists can be both incredibly challenging and incredibly rewarding from the perspective of a designer. When aesthetics mesh effortlessly, it can be refreshing to work with a client as focused on quality and outcome as we are, but it can also be challenging to rein artists in. To design for web or print, we need to address production


Jack Romano and Kate Ziegler Top Opposite

Wedding Monogram 2012 Bottom Opposite

UV Printed New Years Eve Invitation 2012

considerations, timeline and even durability; a piece intended as a mailing can’t be delicate, no matter the vision. It’s our role to take that vision and construct something concrete and appropriate for the media without losing the clients’ style in translation. The promotional pieces that I see most often from photographers are websites, business cards, newsletters and promotional mailers. What is UJC’s approach to branding across these mediums? Designing across web and print is absolutely doable, but requires attention to detail. Web design trends don’t always align with print trends, so pulling a design from the web directly to print materials won’t translate well; something will end up looking cluttered or dated. Especially for visual artists, we tend to approach web design as very graphics-heavy, very focused on the portfolio, and with minimal bells and whistles to distract from the work. When that design moves toward print, we already have a style guide to work from—fonts, colors and logos will remain consistent—but we design each print piece to a specific purpose and audience. Our business card designs tend to be clean and with space on the verso to write; we suggest promotional mailers be glossy and on heavy stock for durability. We try to get a use-case in mind for each piece, so that we can put together a design that truly works for the client and their audience alike. Most photographers own some kind of design software, but it takes a lot of study and practice to utilize their full potential. What tools does UJC incorporate into their design work? In our work we utilize traditional craft techniques along with the standard digital tools: Illustrator, Photoshop and InDesign play alongside calligraphy, watercolor and basic pencil and paper in our studio. If we’re stumped on a digital element, we’ll sketch it out until we



have a shape we’re happy with, then scan it and create a vector file from the sketch.

service. How does UJC work with artists on a budget?

It does take practice, though—and truly, even for photographers adept in Photoshop and other design software, designing for web and print simply requires a different mindset. Photographers might certainly have the skills necessary to put together their own print pieces, but a designer starts from a different perspective and brings a different professional experience that streamlines the process and accounts for usability.

Since we work almost entirely in custom design, we’re uniquely positioned to work with clients’ budgetary restrictions from the very beginning. If artists are up front with us about their constraints, we can advise on creative solutions that meet both aesthetic and budgetary requirements. Letterpress might not be feasible, but perhaps less expensive spot UV would help a logo pop; tri-fold designs with multiple pieces might be something that we could source but leave to a client to assemble to cut down on cost. There are almost always solutions, and a professional design team can help to source those, and save time and money by getting it right the first time.

Probably the biggest reason that photographers and the general public decide to forge ahead without the consult and advice of a professional designer is to save money. Budget is always a factor with any professional



Boston Marathon Bus Roll Poster 2012



Why Do Thousands of Galleries Hang Their Art With Gallery System? Gallery System art hanging systems are used in thousands of galleries and studios worldwide, including Kat Kiernan’s Kiernan Gallery. Why? Because Gallery System equipment makes it easy to hang, adjust, and refine until the work shines as it should. No nails, no tools, no fuss. Just great displays.

Call Gallery System Art Displays today at 800-460-8703, and mention Don’t Take Pictures for a free sample kit.

Of Beards and Men A Portrait of Man by Joseph D.R. OLeary

Do you love beards, men, or men with beards? Photographer Joseph D.R. OLeary has created portraits of 130+ bearded men that will be featured in an exquisitely printed, hard cover, coffee table book. The limited-edition book will showcase handsome beards and moustaches from all walks of life. In addition, the book will include essays by art critic George Slade, photographer/educator Douglas Beasley, and arts writer Andy Sturdevant. Order your copy now at Ships November 2013. Learn more at

Back Cover

Seconden Zwemmen Joshua Meier 2012

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