More & Co. = a studio in Portland, Maine, comprised of Christopher David Ryan, Ryan Thomas Shimala, and Maria Alexandra Vettese who do the following: Art Direction + Concept; Book Design + Publishing; Casting + Styling; Design + Branding; Doodles + Drawings; Insight + Strategy; Photography + Video Production; Web + Social Media
::deep breath:: got that?
Maria Alexandra Vettese is also half of 3191 Miles Apart, a project/site that I’ve posted about a couple years ago, because I’m in love with it. Check out the site for more photos like this:
but the short of it is, that Maria and Stephanie Congdon Barnes live 3191 miles apart, and they have found a way since meeting online in 2005 to stay connected via this site in some fashion. They started with A Year of Mornings, taking a photo each day in their respective location and then pairing it together, without any planning, as a diptych. This and other projects helped grow their budding friendship “based on a shared love of art and craft, simple things and a well-lived domestic life.” Lovely stuff.
SO. I keep checking back in periodically with More & Co. who not only do great work, but also keep an active blog that maintains the same great photography approach that I love about 3191. And man, if these shots don’t make you crave to be in a studio with people you adore doing work you love…
I just came off a weekend trip to Chicago where I was able to catch up with old friends and also celebrate the latest soon-to-be mom. I feel like babies are everywhere around me these days, including adorable images in my Google Reader. Or maybe I’m just more perceptive now that baby talk is in my ears and babies are in my arms. And while it’s a time in the way distant future until one of these are in my own home, I can still love those around me and enjoy the talented photographers that I come across. Annie McElwain is an LA-based photog who has some pretty cute lil ones in her portfolio. Check out her site for more. And to all the new parents out there: just because you’re entering what probably feels like a serious marker of adulthood, does not mean you need to have bad taste and fake backdrops.
Ross Evertson is an artist and designer from Toronto. One of his projects, Connection, reminds me of Richard Renaldi’s Touching Strangers that I posted a couple months ago. While Renaldi’s questions how we understand our physical relationship to another stranger, Evertson’s focuses on the romantic belief that there’s an intrinsic bond between the artist + subject. In each image, he holds the hand of the individual while he takes their photo, “literalizing the fabled connection.” I love that Evertson’s physical involvement is not always clear in the photo.
20×200 was started in 2007 by Jen Bekman. It takes the pretension out of buying and selling art as each week they introduce a couple new pieces (paper + photo) on their site, making them available and accessible to the public. You can buy prints of the smallest size (usually 8″ x 10″) for just $20. They also sell larger versions—with larger pricetags—up to $2,000. I haven’t checked it out in a few months… and when I did, I found some to put on the wishlist (each photo has the respective artist statement below):
prettymaps (sfba), Aaron Straup Cope
I’d like to generate map tiles that give you that same dizzy feeling you get when you look down at a city at night, from an airplane. We’ve spent so long fussing over the relentless details in cartography that we’ve sort of forgotten what things (should) look like at a distance.
This August 2010 version of prettymaps is code-named “Isola” after the Finnish textile designer Maija Isola. At a time when the tools for making custom maps and bespoke cartographies are becoming easier* and more accessible it is nice to look back at her work and imagine the maps she might have made if she were alive today.
*Road, highway and path data collected by the OpenStreetMap (OSM) project.
Rift #26 (Heimaey Houses), Marion Belanger
Rift #26 was made in Iceland at an excavation site on the island of Heimaey where a fissure in the earth opened on January 23, 1973 and hot molten lava buried approximately 360 houses. Here, the North American Plate is moving westward, creating new crust as magma pushes up from the mantle. Geologically, this is a divergent boundary, characterized by splitting earth, steaming hot water, volcanic eruptions, and a young lava landscape almost devoid of trees. The land is unstable and raw.
Saugnac et Muret #1, 27/12/2005 11:27, Bert Teunissen
Do you think it is really for our own good that multinationals take over our food production like the insurance companies want us to believe?
Do you really think that this way our food will become healthier?
Do you think that franchising will make us all happier than we have ever been?
Do you really want your hamburger in New York to taste the same as in L.A. or in Tokyo?
Do you understand why a piece of antique furniture is so expensive?
Do you believe in IKEA or McDonalds for instance?
I do not.
Untitled (Sad Vader), Alex Brown
In my photography, I am interested in the spontaneous documentation of scenes from daily life. I am drawn to moments of beauty and humor in the mundane that often go unnoticed.
This photograph was taken in a McDonald’s restaurant in Upstate New York. The kid was sitting in the booth on his own wearing a Darth Vader helmet that made the same breathing sound as the character in Star Wars. For some reason, he reminded me of myself as a child. I always wanted a helmet like that when Star Wars first came out but my parents wouldn’t buy me one.
This photograph explores various themes that are central to my work and that are heavily influenced by the American TV, movies and pop culture I experienced growing up in the 80s.
Ringside, Jason Burch
This print comes from my series Constructed Environments, a group of playful ruminations on interactions with our surroundings. The series grew out of sketching ideas for large-scale landscapes that involved sometimes epic performative aspects. Large-scale constructions and male angst dominate the series. This particular piece stood out from the others in that it depicted a more intimate space and is far more confrontational. It is also very playful and absurd. I laugh still when I look at it. Especially funny is the source material for the foreground figures. They come from a 1918 book on practical self-defense. The illustrations in the book all feature gentlemen in suits demonstrating self-defense tactics. I particularly enjoy the contrast in this image of male rage and etiquette.
Midway, Neshoba County Fair, Philadelphia, Mississippi, Mike Sinclair
The Neshoba County Fair is different from the county fairs we have in the Midwest. It has most of the things you usually find: livestock judging, a beauty pageant, horse racing and a midway. The unusual thing is that it has over 600 one- and two-story cabins, called fairhouses, arranged into streets and neighborhoods on the fairgrounds. People own these cabins and live in them for the seven days of the fair. They are highly prized, handed down from one generation to the next. For the visitor, it gives the place a strange feeling: you are not sure if you’re in a public or private space. When I was there I remember feeling like I’d come upon some extravagant neighborhood block party and it was obvious—at least to me—I was from another block.
The question of being on the inside or outside of a group is something I think most photographers think about. Do we photograph the familiar or the exotic, are we reporters or memoirists? If I went back there this July, twenty years later, what pictures would I take?
Nethermead, Joseph O. Holmes
In addition to specific projects, I pursue a variety of urban landscape studies around New York City. And yet after several years of this, I realize I’m barely scratching the surface. Just when I think I’ve got a handle on capturing these famously gritty streets, I turn a corner and realize just how infinitely deep and rich this town really is.
My snow storm images of Brooklyn’s Prospect Park are cases in point. At first glance, they might be mistaken for wilderness landscapes. Then, lamps lining a path come into focus, and faint hints of distant benches. Tiny details emerge and wilderness trekkers become a dog walker or a couple on a park hike. New York City proves to be as hard to pin down as ever. Even when I’m the middle of other projects, exploring other ideas and subjects, the promise of discoveries like these send me back out into the city to try to nudge it into revealing itself again.
I have a habit of keeping a million tabs open at a time in my browser that I want to look at and assume I’ll go back to when I have more time. This page, Black and WTF, has been hanging out for a few days (which sadly means I forget where I found it). It’s a tumblr page that just posts old, often ridiculous, photos sent in by folks everywhere. Here’s some favorites from the first few pages:
Using typography in a way we don’t see every day on the web is this lovely, poetic site from Max Fenton in Brooklyn.
And keeping with the unexpected theme… is his blog read* which is devoid of captioning but rather posts images/screenshots of passages from books or the web. Here’s a few days:
One of the personal projects he posts is polaroid which shows two polaroids, side by side, which you can click each independently of the other to change the pair. If that doesn’t make sense, check it out and it will. Pretty great.
Photographer Richard Renaldi is working on an ongoing portrait project.
The premise of this work is simple: I meet two or more people on the street who are strangers to each other, and to me. I ask them if they will pose for a photograph together with the stipulation that they must touch each other in some manner. …. Touching Strangers encourages viewers to think about how we relate physically to one another, and to entertain the possibility that there is an unlimited potential for new relationships with almost anybody passing by.