ARTIST STATEMENT

Denise Gilchrist

About me as a photographer:

Retirement finally allowed me the time to explore, experiment and enjoy my latent creative potential.

A new digital camera and software equipped me with the tools to record my freedom.

I have sampled a variety of genres grappling with the challenges each presented.

I captured the moment, the mood and the mysteries of the natural world with the aurora borealis a memorable highlight.

However, I wanted to be less representational and include a little more of ‘me’ ‘my interpretation’ of this brave new adventure.

My influences are numerous from  Cézanne, Bonnard, Braque, Kandinsky, Klee, Georgia O’Keefe to Hockney.

I embark on my new ‘route’ with renewed enthusiasm to encapsulate both the view and the vision but with emotion with increased empathy… hopefully!

 

MY PROJECT

HOME   ‘ as a repository of my histories and keeper of the soul …’

 

I chose the title 'home’ which was timely given that this work was completed during Corona Virus lockdown and I could not leave the house. A period of enforced time to reflect provided the backdrop for my project.

My ‘hometown’ Liverpool laid the foundations of what I would treasure and possibly my sense of humour.

Now located in Yorkshire I have lived in the same house for 38 years so if the walls could talk it would no doubt be an interesting conversation. However, gazing at the walls the shelves and the crammed cupboards highlighted the contents collected and chosen by me or for me are the essence of what I believe home is for me… a sanctuary, a retreat, a haven both inside and outside.

 

I have, when finances permitted been guided by the combined design ethics of The Bauhaus, and William Morris 1879… ’do not have anything in your house that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful’

Their shared ideals of truth to materials, craft skills, authenticity, honesty and impeccable high quality materials provided a scaffolding for my choices.

The decisions on what to include for my project were difficult … ‘less is more’ became a mantra as I waded through possible options which changed daily even hourly … so this is a work in progress at this stage. This is an edited selection of my presentation.

I have attempted to capture the beauty of the object with its significance to me.

The titles hint at the memories and the emotions evoked.  I realise these will fluctuate with the passage of time and I am merely the custodian for now. They meant something the the original creator (most are handmade) I hope I have cherished that intent and kept them safe.

However, I can now infuse them with  a new perspective which gives them a new beginning in a new medium. I have enjoyed experimenting with new in camera skills of Multiple Exposure and Intentional Camera Movement which have served me well in attempting to capture a different vision. I have been brave in exploring the hidden options in Photoshop blending modes which almost became addictive but quite surprising.

I know that this is merely the start as I strive towards increased abstraction. I hope I am on a more satisfying photographic route but without the guidance from Doug Chinnery and Valda Bailey I would have still been lost in the never ending search for that perfect sunset shot… so a big thank you

 

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Social media, Valda

Social media, Bailey Chinnery

Social media, Doug

ARTIST STATEMENT

Keep your love of nature, for that is the true way to understand art and more.
~ Vincent VanGogh

I have always found solace and inspiration in nature, whether as a child reciting Greek mythology under the stars or photographing the milky way as an adult. I am intrigued by ordinary natural elements that most people don’t notice while on their journey through life. Elevating the beauty of the mundane, the commonplace things in nature,  is a challenge I enjoy.

As I step away from shooting mostly representational images of nature, I find that photographs expressing emotion, beauty or mystery allow viewers to personally interact with photographs. I would like to have people stop and linger awhile on my images, perhaps tapping into their forgotten memories of places or things, or finding that they are seeing something more deeply that they hadn’t previously noticed.

Embracing change,  I challenge  myself  to shoot in new ways, such as using intentional camera movement, multiple exposures, and in-camera blends. I am venturing into creating more abstract images, to understand and  play with color and white balance shifts while seeking out patterns, shapes and textures in nature that fit my vision.

Vincent Van Gogh, Henri Matisse, Georgia O’Keefe and many other artists, are informing my photography with the importance and power of color, form, space and composition. And,  I’m inspired and forever grateful for Valda Bailey and Doug Chinnery’s creative workshops!  I continue to learn and draw inspiration from their abstract impressionistic work.

“Creativity takes Courage!”  ~ Henri Matisse

 

PROJECT STATEMENT

Sublime Slime
(Beauty in the Time of Covid)

While sheltered in place due to the Corona Virus,, I stood many days peering out of my living-room windows to the area known as Richardson Bay, an arm of the San Francisco Bay. And each day when the tide was low, I noticed what I thought was an overabundance of algae that I had never seen before.  When the Shelter in Place lifted, I was excited to leave the house and go see first hand what I’d been viewing.  No humans to infect or bother me, I found joy in photographing the unusual algae display that was currently causing so much horror and angst amongst the online neighborhood community that was discussing how to rid our shores of this scourge.

My title, Sublime Slime, is my playful attempt to show you that it is possible to view algae as something else:  a vibrantly beautiful plant that scientists estimate produce at least half of the oxygen in Earth’s atmosphere by converting carbon dioxide during photosynthesis.  Always a champion of the marginalized (human, flora and fauna), this project suited my desire to find and reveal the beauty in the mundane.

Checking to be sure it wasn’t toxic, and working daily before the algae police found my obscure space (as well as chasing the ebb and flow of the daily tides),  I mucked around in the slime, goo, and stench to discover the hidden beauty of algae. For it was Minor White who said, “One does not photograph something simply for what it is, but for what else it is.”,

On my first approach to the scene, I was stunned by what I saw draped along the shore. Gingerly stepping amongst the dried and still green algae, I realized that I would need to use several different lenses to capture my intention of showing something other than what most people see or don’t see.  I wanted to begin seeing in a more abstract way.  I settled upon my toolkit and employed a few different lenses (a macro, a Lensbaby, a 70-200mm and the workhorse 24–105mm).  My  other essential tools were a tarp (to cover the mud while scrunching my body into obscene positions to photograph),  gloves, mask and rain boots. I was ready and protected from come what may!

Social media, Valda

Social media, Bailey Chinnery

Social media, Doug

ARTIST STATEMENT

Keep your love of nature, for that is the true way to understand art and more.
~ Vincent VanGogh

I have always found solace and inspiration in nature, whether as a child reciting Greek mythology under the stars or photographing the milky way as an adult. I am intrigued by ordinary natural elements that most people don’t notice while on their journey through life. Elevating the beauty of the mundane, the commonplace things in nature,  is a challenge I enjoy.

As I step away from shooting mostly representational images of nature, I find that photographs expressing emotion, beauty or mystery allow viewers to personally interact with photographs. I would like to have people stop and linger awhile on my images, perhaps tapping into their forgotten memories of places or things, or finding that they are seeing something more deeply that they hadn’t previously noticed.

Embracing change,  I challenge  myself  to shoot in new ways, such as using intentional camera movement, multiple exposures, and in-camera blends. I am venturing into creating more abstract images, to understand and  play with color and white balance shifts while seeking out patterns, shapes and textures in nature that fit my vision.

Vincent Van Gogh, Henri Matisse, Georgia O’Keefe and many other artists, are informing my photography with the importance and power of color, form, space and composition. And,  I’m inspired and forever grateful for Valda Bailey and Doug Chinnery’s creative workshops!  I continue to learn and draw inspiration from their abstract impressionistic work.

“Creativity takes Courage!”  ~ Henri Matisse

 

PROJECT STATEMENT

Sublime Slime
(Beauty in the Time of Covid)

While sheltered in place due to the Corona Virus,, I stood many days peering out of my living-room windows to the area known as Richardson Bay, an arm of the San Francisco Bay. And each day when the tide was low, I noticed what I thought was an overabundance of algae that I had never seen before.  When the Shelter in Place lifted, I was excited to leave the house and go see first hand what I’d been viewing.  No humans to infect or bother me, I found joy in photographing the unusual algae display that was currently causing so much horror and angst amongst the online neighborhood community that was discussing how to rid our shores of this scourge.

My title, Sublime Slime, is my playful attempt to show you that it is possible to view algae as something else:  a vibrantly beautiful plant that scientists estimate produce at least half of the oxygen in Earth’s atmosphere by converting carbon dioxide during photosynthesis.  Always a champion of the marginalized (human, flora and fauna), this project suited my desire to find and reveal the beauty in the mundane.

Checking to be sure it wasn’t toxic, and working daily before the algae police found my obscure space (as well as chasing the ebb and flow of the daily tides),  I mucked around in the slime, goo, and stench to discover the hidden beauty of algae. For it was Minor White who said, “One does not photograph something simply for what it is, but for what else it is.”,

On my first approach to the scene, I was stunned by what I saw draped along the shore. Gingerly stepping amongst the dried and still green algae, I realized that I would need to use several different lenses to capture my intention of showing something other than what most people see or don’t see.  I wanted to begin seeing in a more abstract way.  I settled upon my toolkit and employed a few different lenses (a macro, a Lensbaby, a 70-200mm and the workhorse 24–105mm).  My  other essential tools were a tarp (to cover the mud while scrunching my body into obscene positions to photograph),  gloves, mask and rain boots. I was ready and protected from come what may!

Social media, Valda

Social media, Bailey Chinnery

Social media, Doug

ARTIST STATEMENT

Keep your love of nature, for that is the true way to understand art and more.
~ Vincent VanGogh

I have always found solace and inspiration in nature, whether as a child reciting Greek mythology under the stars or photographing the milky way as an adult. I am intrigued by ordinary natural elements that most people don’t notice while on their journey through life. Elevating the beauty of the mundane, the commonplace things in nature,  is a challenge I enjoy.

As I step away from shooting mostly representational images of nature, I find that photographs expressing emotion, beauty or mystery allow viewers to personally interact with photographs. I would like to have people stop and linger awhile on my images, perhaps tapping into their forgotten memories of places or things, or finding that they are seeing something more deeply that they hadn’t previously noticed.

Embracing change,  I challenge  myself  to shoot in new ways, such as using intentional camera movement, multiple exposures, and in-camera blends. I am venturing into creating more abstract images, to understand and  play with color and white balance shifts while seeking out patterns, shapes and textures in nature that fit my vision.

Vincent Van Gogh, Henri Matisse, Georgia O’Keefe and many other artists, are informing my photography with the importance and power of color, form, space and composition. And,  I’m inspired and forever grateful for Valda Bailey and Doug Chinnery’s creative workshops!  I continue to learn and draw inspiration from their abstract impressionistic work.

“Creativity takes Courage!”  ~ Henri Matisse

 

PROJECT STATEMENT

Sublime Slime
(Beauty in the Time of Covid)

While sheltered in place due to the Corona Virus,, I stood many days peering out of my living-room windows to the area known as Richardson Bay, an arm of the San Francisco Bay. And each day when the tide was low, I noticed what I thought was an overabundance of algae that I had never seen before.  When the Shelter in Place lifted, I was excited to leave the house and go see first hand what I’d been viewing.  No humans to infect or bother me, I found joy in photographing the unusual algae display that was currently causing so much horror and angst amongst the online neighborhood community that was discussing how to rid our shores of this scourge.

My title, Sublime Slime, is my playful attempt to show you that it is possible to view algae as something else:  a vibrantly beautiful plant that scientists estimate produce at least half of the oxygen in Earth’s atmosphere by converting carbon dioxide during photosynthesis.  Always a champion of the marginalized (human, flora and fauna), this project suited my desire to find and reveal the beauty in the mundane.

Checking to be sure it wasn’t toxic, and working daily before the algae police found my obscure space (as well as chasing the ebb and flow of the daily tides),  I mucked around in the slime, goo, and stench to discover the hidden beauty of algae. For it was Minor White who said, “One does not photograph something simply for what it is, but for what else it is.”,

On my first approach to the scene, I was stunned by what I saw draped along the shore. Gingerly stepping amongst the dried and still green algae, I realized that I would need to use several different lenses to capture my intention of showing something other than what most people see or don’t see.  I wanted to begin seeing in a more abstract way.  I settled upon my toolkit and employed a few different lenses (a macro, a Lensbaby, a 70-200mm and the workhorse 24–105mm).  My  other essential tools were a tarp (to cover the mud while scrunching my body into obscene positions to photograph),  gloves, mask and rain boots. I was ready and protected from come what may!

Social media, Valda

Social media, Bailey Chinnery

Social media, Doug