Monday, November 22, 2010

You've got to....Whippet!

Sorry DEVO fans, I had to say it.

Here we have Charlie who is standing in the classic stacked position showing a hint of his tail. Charlie's portrait was done in the Fairmount Park area of Philadelphia.

It was about an hour before sunset and the hillside was bathed in beautiful golden light. A perfect afternoon for a historical portrait. There was a dream like quality to the background and everything was coming together perfectly, but wait...

A very loud and jubilant family picnic was taking place not too far away. Families in the past had parties but few got down like this group. I was telling the owners despite the loudness and general carrying on, that no one would be able to tell by the steadfast and placid quality of this portrait.

Despite what goes on off camera, I always like to convey the feeling of calmness and tranquility. Sharing the back story that every portrait has gives you a sense of what we go through, and ultimately, makes them more endeared to us.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

French Revelation

Ever since I’ve been working on this series, I have always strived to have the animal portraits that I do show the subject in a heroic light.

Try as I may with the smaller breeds, to me, they look more cute and comical rather than regal & refined. The more that I do of these, the more I see that specific breeds dictate a large part of what the final outcome and mood of the portrait will be.

There is a freeing quality to this way of thinking in that I always try to magnify everything about the subject. If it brings out their personality and adds to the image, I'm all for it.

Monday, August 16, 2010

I heart the Philadelphia Inquirer!

I usually don't post news items in this area, but this a big one. As some of you already know, I have an exhibition at the Philadelphia International Airport that runs until November.
I got an email from the airport last week to let me know that a reporter would be contacting me to ask a few questions about the exhibition. I thought that I might get a mention and a photo but nothing like this.

Friday, July 30, 2010

A Man in Motion

This a friend of mine Brian, a cycling enthusiast, marketing whiz and latest portrait of the human catagory. I've said it before, but one of my main goals is to do work that has the same look and feel, no matter what is in front of my lens and in my thoughts.

Whether its a person, place or a thing, I work really hard to make the image feel historical.  Gone are things that appear outwardly modern of that give an indication of anything recent. On the other end, I try to avoid elements of antiquity  to give the viewer's imagination room to create their own sense of when a particular piece was conceived.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

The great indoors: Henry the 2nd

This is Henry. I am referring to him as the 2nd because we have Henry the cat in a previous post.

I am continuing my indoor series here and it is one of my most distilled down portraits to date. About the only prop that I have here is the banister. Their is nothing else to distract the eye and more than ever, the subject and quality of light are so vital and they must be strong. It also helped that Henry was so malleable and statuesque. This was done at the owner's home and the portrait might hang on the same wall used as the background. I'll post a picture if it does.

Next up: people,  a couple of dogs and a trip to Longwood Gardens.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

A not so Fast Eddie

This is Fast Eddie and as we see here, there is nothing fast about him in this portrait. He is relaxed while being very regal.
All kidding aside, I wanted to hold on to the power and heroic feel of my more pastoral work and have it translate just as well in an indoor setting . In the last three portraits, I took away the outdoor background and added a drape and painterly back ground. The strength in the subject is still there and style is consistent.

Doing portraits this way gives me the ability to do them though out the year and not have worry about weather conditions like I had to in the past.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

More Cats and Imagination

Miss Jeanette is my most recent subject and is continuing on with my "Basics" series.

As an artist I like to think that I'm always discovering something new. But I've come to the realization that new means new to me. I do enjoy the fact that these portraits don't really draw on anything that is modern except that they are executed with a camera and not a brush.

The way that I implement ideas however, will never change. This means that things that I conjure up and toss about mentally,  is always done by the same process of pre-visualization. It's taking a picture in mind and putting it through all that my imagination can think of. Stay tuned for more of my imagination.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Back to Basics part 2

So here is second installment of this series. For me, it really gets back to why I do these in the first place. I love to portray anything in a heroic, bigger than life way. I'm all for adding a make believe element or two, as long as it doesn't take anything away from the subject.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Back to Basics

This is a lighting test for an upcoming indoor series of cats. I will be doing these in the next couple of weeks to show that my outdoor style translates consistently indoors. It is extremely hard to do and I have studied it's qualities that makes this work so historic and timeless looking. I think I'm on the right track.

More monkeying around

So this is the second version of the monkey portrait that I've been working on. To be honest, while I like this version better than the last, something is missing here. For me, it is the heroism  that brings a real special element to all of my other work. In this image's own defense, it is merely an experiment of pushing the boundaries and me growing as an artist. It is a journey, in that I want to explore as many possibilities as I can.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Hitting a Wall

With things being in the shape that they are at the moment, I wanted to express my stance in the best way that I know how. The depicted wall here is a figurative one but also one that is imagined by our subject.  We all feel this way from time to time especially in this economic climate. I am sure that things will get better and I never doubt the power of good ideas.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Monkeying Around

I took a trip to the Philadelphia Zoo last week with the intention of seeing how I could photograph the animals in their exhibit areas. I wasn't sure of what I would come away with and I didn't think of putting the two subjects together until later. The way that the light played on the zoo's environs was pretty consistent and the background was from the Philadelphia Art Museum area that I did last fall. I didn't know if it would work, but I think it turned out well not having any set expectations before hand.

Outside of my commission work, I am really trying to push the boundaries here and see where it takes the work. With a color palette that has so many dark tones, it's important for me to have some level of humor, playfulness in each new piece.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Where are the animals?

It's a tough time of year for them to be outside so I've been concentrating on buildings for last couple of weeks. But fear not animal lovers, Spring is around the corner and there is lot that I've got planned.

When I do building illustrations, I think about the power and working spirit that  these places embody. The power plants themselves have a personality of their own, they exemplify the word "work" in it's purest form. I hope that this part of history repeats itself again and again. Soon.

Monday, January 18, 2010

The way I see it.

Outside of my regular portrait work, I've been working on a series of architectural images. The collection of images has been growing steadily since last year. My reference to "seeing it" comes from me picking my subjects merely by how the light plays upon them. This creates a new dynamic because it forces me to search for a mood or feeling first. Then, judge if the subject fits with what I'm trying to capture at that moment. You can view more in the "illustration" section of my site at

View this post on Instagram Along with my recent cover @the_bark_mag , I was also given a feature article. Some new work...