Monday, September 26, 2011

Found this postcard recently. The photo credit is funny: Photography by Dave. Ok, I guess that makes sense. Not a lot to go on there. But I enjoy the image.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

My work at the William King Museum

My work will be featured in an upcoming exhibition at the William King Museum in Abingdon, VA. Below is some information about the show which is entitled From These Hills: Contemporary Art in the Southern Appalachian Highlands. The exhibit opens on October 14th with the opening reception on October 13th.

Abingdon, Virginia (August 9, 2011) – William King Museum: Center for Art and Cultural Heritage is pleased to present its newest exhibition From These Hills: Contemporary Art in the Southern Appalachian Highlands. Widely known for the deep cultural and historical value, the Appalachian region continues to prove it has much to offer residents and travelers alike. From These Hills: Contemporary Art in the Southern Appalachian Highlands is a biennial exhibition that celebrates the diverse artistic talent in the region by featuring a variety of new works by artists working in all media in Southwest Virginia, Northeast Tennessee, Western North Carolina, Southern West Virginia, and Eastern Kentucky. The exhibit held open invitations for artists in the area to submit their work for consideration of inclusion into the exhibit. In addition to the rich interaction with the public, From These Hills will welcome guest curator Amy Moorefield, Director and Chief Curator of the Eleanor D. Wilson Museum at Hollins University.

This exhibition will open to the general public on October 14, 2011. Featured in the show will be work in all mediums including painting, drawing, printmaking, photography, sculpture, mixed media and performance art. Related events include the Opening Reception on Thursday, October 13th, from 5 to 8 p.m. for the general public. Information on these and all other related events can be found on the Museum’s website,

William King Museum is located at 415 Academy Drive, off West Main Street or Russell Road, in Abingdon. The museum features five exhibition galleries, resident artist studios, a museum store and outdoor sculpture garden. Educational programs in the visual arts are offered year-round for both children and adults, and school audiences are served by in-house and outreach programs. Accredited by the American Association of Museums, the William King Museum is a partner of the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, and a member of the Virginia Association of Museums.

Photos I found in an antique store

These are some photographs I found recently at an antique store. I just wonder about the people in the images; who they are and what event is transpiring. Some are pretty straightforward, but the queue of people with luggage is ambiguous. Its not clear who they are and where they are going. Somehow they seem under duress. But perhaps not, maybe its just time for holiday. That doesn't seem plausible, however. So where are they being shipped to? What's up with that? Why read a newspaper on the side of a mine, or whatever rock terrain that is?

The woman admiring her baby is really sentimental. Well, maybe not. She's kind of looking at it questioningly. The light and open door are wonderful. The detail of the stroller is just perfect too. I like all of these.

Finding Photographs

These are two old photos I found in my parents' album. Lately I've been thinking about finding photographs, or refinding them. Recently I've accumulated more images, which include postcards and snapshots I find at bookstores or antique malls. There is an abundance of rich photographs out there. And I've "found" many interesting photographs in my own family's albums. Not photos that just interest me because of their connection to me, but ones that I find intriguing regardless of my relationship to the subjects.

I've realized just how many photographs I have. Many are my own that I've taken, while others are from my family's snapshots. Most of my family photos have been scattered about, either in boxes or old photo albums or scrapbooks. Trying to organize, store, and preserve them is difficult. But I realize I want to be able to more easily access my collection. And that means knowing what I have, where it is and how to get to it. Many of the photos I hadn't seen for years and had forgotten about or never really remembered. Looking through them now, I see aesthetic pleasantries that I hadn't appreciated fully before.

When buying photos at antique malls, I'm drawn to the images I can make up a story for. There's a compositional element that intrigues me, and lures me into purchasing, which is not something specific I can describe. But I also like the mystery, or uncertainty of what may be going on within the photograph. There's information and enough clues to piece together, but you will never know all the details. I realize I will not know the people's names or what the exact relationship between the individuals may be. However, I don't need to know. While they may be personal photographs, the descriptions and ambiguity are what make it art; that and the context in which I'm viewing them, which is as appropriated or found art.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Malvern Hills

I could tell you this image was made in Malvern Hills, but it wouldn't really matter. Not to me anyway, and probably not to you. Maybe the specificity would signify some broad concept, that could be then specifically applied to a geographic locale. I like to think it was made elsewhere, another city, another state even. That's what I like to make believe. Because when I see it, my mind somehow believes it. I can't even really think it is so close. Its about something other than the place anyhow. Or a place that exists everywhere and nowhere. Its a corner you can never go back to. Or maybe one you will see in the future. These are the things I see.

Friday, September 16, 2011

One of North Carolina's Good Roads & Other Stories

Here's a project I worked on over the summer with Nora Hartlaub. Check it out on my website.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

New book, Polaroids

My new book, Polaroids, is just completed. Below is my statement.

Polaroids have existed since before I was born, so throughout my life they were always there. Some of the first photographs taken of me as a newborn, which I still have, are Polaroids. As a child, family members would pull out the camera and photograph the holidays, parties or get-togethers with a Polaroid. In my adolescence, my friends and I would make pictures of ourselves goofing off, or of some mundane object or scene we came across. I took them for granted as part of the culture and assumed they would always be around.

These Polaroids were made primarily in 2008, around the time the Polaroid Corporation announced plans to discontinue producing their legendary films. I spent several months shooting as much of the film as I could afford, realizing it may soon be gone forever. This work is the result of my efforts.

Shortly after Polaroid discontinued production, a small group calling themselves The Impossible Project, came together and purchased some of Polaroid's equipment and sought to continue making their own instant film to be compatible with existing Polaroid cameras. In 2011, I purchased a pack of the new film and shot the 8 frames that were in the package. The films had to be reinvented, as the Polaroid dyes were no longer available. The new films offer instant pictures, like the original Polaroids, however, the dyes, colors and processing are slightly different. There is more variation in the exposures and color tones of the new film. A few of those are included in this body of work as well.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Sunday, September 11, 2011

My new book Something in the Way

So here it is. At long last. My book Something in the Way, which features work made over the last two years. This book is also part of my MFA thesis exhibition, which will be in November. Many of these images will be included in the show. The work of the exhibit and the work within the book are slightly different, with photographic prints on display that didn't make it into the book. However, as a body of work intended as a book, this is the edit, sequence and narrative that I found suitable. This is the most ambitious project I've done to date and am so happy to have the work viewable. It feels like the work is more challenging than what I've done previously.

Saturday, September 3, 2011


I've added a new gallery to my website. It features my Polaroid photos. A couple years ago, Polaroid announced they would be discontinuing their film manufacturing. I spent about nine months shooting with my SX70 camera and Land Camera to make a body of Polaroid images, since they would soon be gone forever.

However, the Impossible Project came along and still offer films for Polaroid cameras. I recently ordered my first Polaroid film through the Impossible Project. It was really nice to be able to shoot again. The only downside is the cost. Its prohibitively expensive for me, unless I'm able to get some grant or something. Anyway, I shot the pack I had and felt happy. Maybe it'll be something I can treat myself to once or twice a year. Anyway, I figured it was time to edit these Polaroid photos and do something with them. Maybe I'll do a little book too. I think those are always kinda fun.

Thursday, September 1, 2011