Sunday, October 28, 2012

The 2012 Suncheon Photo Club, 순천 포토 클럽, Group Exhibition

The 2012 Suncheon Photo Club, 순천 포토 클럽, group exhibition started yesterday afternoon in 순천시 문화건강 센터.  With nearly 50 photographs on display for the public to view at no charge, the event marked the 4th year of SPC conducting an exhibition for its members.

The heavy thunderstorm that blanketed the city kept a lot of people away.  That was unfortunate, because I was struck by the quality of the work of the photographers, and I was very impressed with the mounting and framing of the finished pieces.  There happens to be a lot of talented men and women who are members of the club.  I was happy to see my friends who braved the elements to attend the event.  

Prior to the start of the opening reception at 3 p.m., I took some photos of the venue.

 All the photographs above are © Mark Eaton

My wife and I were photographed by the president of the Suncheon Photo Club, 김학수 (He is the gentleman facing the camera holding the cup in the photo above), as we stood next to the two pieces I am showing at the event.

 © 2012 김학수

The color photograph next to my wife is titled, Dwindling II, and it is part of my Water and the Sea project.  The black and white photograph next to me is titled, Hide Openly, and that composition is a part of my  많은 사람들 중의 하나 - One Among Many People.  The 많은 사람들 중의 하나 - One Among Many People project can be seen on my website here.

There is still time to visit the exhibition venue, though it must be done soon, because the exhibit concludes this coming Wednesday, October 31, 2012.  Yes, it is too short an event for the quality of the photographs on display.  The good news is the building appears to remain open until very late at night for visitors.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Maria Lisak Needs Videographers and Others to Help

There are many benefits to living the life of an expatriate.  One benefit is being able to ask for assistance within, and without, the expat community.  Such is the case currently with Maria Lisak.

This past August I wrote a short article for Social Discourse of Disquiet about Maria Lisak here.  At the present time, she is looking for some people to help with a project that will support nature and wildlife.  She is looking for:

1)  People to record a few interviews.
2)  People to spend a day to video habitat areas.
3)  People to translate or to provide captions/subtitles for the interviews and videos.
4)  People to help with the design and layout of materials for a multimedia project coordinated with Cornell University. 

The above mentioned positions are unpaid assignments.  This is an ongoing project until May 2013.  To learn more about this project, please contact Maria Lisak via her email (in an effort to stave off the email mining bots, simply replace AT with the @ symbol, and you will want to eliminate those spaces.  Clear as mud?):

gwangjumaria AT

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Ricardo Segovia: Fine Art Photographer

Ricardo Segovia is a fine art photographer and a digital imaging instructor from Mexico.  He is also currently studying marketing and advertising to increase his knowledge of the business of photography.  That pursuit of knowledge is a wonderful aspiration, because Ricardo's work  is especially moving to me, and I think a lot of others who enjoy the arts would like to see his photography.  I especially like his still life compositions, because of the depth of detail found in those images.

When Ricardo began is photography career, he worked as a commercial photographer.  While he taught in schools, he rediscovered art and its importance.  His approach to the art of photography is emotional, and it is moving.  What is impressive to me is his attention to detail when he composes a scene during a photo session, and when he processes an image during post-production.  My eyes, and my mind don't tire or get distracted when I view Ricardo's photography.

    Night Table
© Ricardo Segovia

Ricardo is inspired by painters, music, nature, deep emotions, and concepts.  His intent is to extract emotional responses and to share a message with a viewer.  He is effective at this, because much of his work is minimalism.  Simple things are the most powerful and thought provoking.  He believes when a person has the opportunity to create something, it should be memorable.

 Outer Blue
© Ricardo Segovia

 Autumn Leaves No. 3
© Ricardo Segovia

Originally, Ricardo wanted to become a painter.  He felt, however, that he wasn't talented enough to draw or to paint.  He then wanted to study cinematic arts, but that was cost prohibitive to him in Mexico.  He learned that by using a camera he could effectively mesh his appreciation for art and his desire to tell a story.

With film photography, he experimented with black and white film, and with different chemical processes in the wet darkroom.  In the digital age, he experiments with colors, tones, and textures.

When Ricardo composes an image, light is the most important element.  As seen in his still life work above, light shows texture and gives volume and depth to a scene.  He works with different points of view, angles, and perspectives while composing.

His portraiture work is creative, and it is meant to have a psychological impact on the viewer.  Ricardo not only feels with his heart and his mind, he thinks with his heart and mind, too.  And he is patient when he is composing.  One really isn't able to be as keen to detail as Ricardo is by being anything other than patient.  All of the elements must be set up correctly before the shutter is released.     

 My Principle Pleasure
© Ricardo Segovia

Dany as an Angel
© Ricardo Segovia

When I asked Ricardo what is most important to him, he replied family, friends, creativity and art.  The important things in life are always first.

In the future, he wants to do more commercial work, and he wants to continue his work with art.  Some day in the future his dream is to form an association of fine art photographers with the goal of providing financial aid to the photographers to create art projects.

To see more of Ricardo's fine art photography, visit his website here.

Ricardo's blog is nice, because there one can read his thoughts and feelings about his posted photography.  Visit his blog here.

By way of conclusion, I wish to highlight three photography competitions that Ricardo participated in.  A more complete list of his awards and honors can be found on his website.  The three competitions:

In 2010, Ricardo earned a third place award at the Prix de la Photographie Paris in the Professional Fine Art Still Life category.  Autumn Leaves is a series of five photographs that he submitted for consideration to the Px3 photography competition.  Scroll down to the bottom right hand side of the Px3 awards page here to view Autumn Leaves.

During the 2011 6th Annual Black and White Spider Awards, Ricardo was a Nominee in the Still Life - Professional category.  Autumn Leaves was his submitted work in this photography competition.  View Autumn Leaves and the other award winning photographs at the Spider Awards site here.

Also in 2011, Ricardo was a Nominee at the 5th Annual Photography Masters Cup in the Still Life - Professional category with his exquisite piece titled, Night Table.  To view Night Table and the other award winning color photographs, visit the International Color Awards site here.

Monday, October 15, 2012

How Felix Baumgartner's Historic Skydive was Documented

Admittedly, I couldn't stay awake to see the record setting skydive made by Felix Baumgartner; however, I was able to view the lift-off and some of the ascent.  After a restful slumber, and after reading the news of Mr. Baumgartner's successful feat, I was curious to know how this event was documented.

David Cardinal wrote an informative piece about the dive that also included some history and perspective on this incredible accomplishment.  As an educator, I appreciate the illustrations and visual aids that complemented his article.  Read Mr. Caridnal's article at ExtremeTech here.

The next logical step, for me, was to visit the "Cameras and Communications" page by none other than Red Bull Stratos.  One simply does not shop online or drive to the local hardware store to buy all the equipment and gear necessary to ensure the success of this hazardous endeavor.  It had to be designed, tested, manufactured, reviewed.  So, too, the equipment used to document the dive.  Read about it here.

Thanks to the information and link on the "Cameras and Communications" page mentioned above, I visited Jay Nemeth's website:  Flightline Films.  It is a fascinating look into aerospace cinematography and photography.

Congratulations to Felix Baumgartner and to all who worked to make this dive a success.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Photographs from the Scott Kelby Worldwide Photo Walk Event - Gwangju

Yesterday, Joe Wabe led the 2012 Scott Kelby Worldwide Photo Walk in Gwangju-si, Jeollanam-do, South Korea.  It was a well attended event with a diverse group hailing from many different countries.  There even was an artist who sketched and drew as she walked along the event route with the photographers.

Joe did a fantastic job leading this walk, and everything went smoothly with the help of others whose expertise and contributions were essential.  It was a wonderful learning experience.  It was also fun for me personally as I caught up with some dear friends during the after-event social.

The timing of the photo walk happened to coincide with other events occurring simultaneously along the walk route.  As is my custom, I was looking for scenes and compositions that featured my appreciation for the design elements, water, and the often overlooked behind the scenes aspects of life.

 Urban Jungle
© 2012 Mark Eaton

 Abandoned and Forgotten
© Mark Eaton

I usually shoot in black and white mode; however, Hot Peppers Drying begged for the color composition.

Hot Peppers Drying
© Mark Eaton

The pair of gloves in Abandoned and Forgotten provides a poignant symbolism of those who are discarded so readily.  Just moments after I took this shot, a participant kicked the gloves under the seats where the awaiting participants rest before being called to line up for the parade.  Out of sight and out of mind as fast as one can imagine. 

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Collaborative Art with Poppy Silver

It is a joyous moment when two or more artists agree to come together with the goal of creating art cooperatively.  Such was the case when the multi-talented Poppy Silver asked me if she could use one of my photographs to accompany one of her writings.  I met Poppy Silver through Google+ not long ago, and I am moved by her work.  Naturally, I responded in the affirmative to her request.

This is what she wrote on her website:  We Watched it Drown - by Poppy Silver.

Readers and followers will be happy to know that I will feature Poppy in an article in the near future.   I will enjoy that experience!


The collaboration with Poppy Silver discussed above was a positive experience.  I have been involved in failed collaborative efforts that cam be termed, politely, as a "cluster foxtrot" and "fubar."  Failed collaborative efforts results from unclear directions and goals, changing the purpose of a project without discussing the change with the other participants, feelings of jealousy if one participant seems to be receiving more attention than others, and, in one case, ulterior motives involving money.

If the purpose is to create art, then the collaboration will often be a positive experience.  If participants are immature regardless the chronological age, and if there is a hidden agenda and motive, then the effort will fail.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Behold: A New Photo Blog

Slate, the online magazine, has very recently started a photo blog called Behold.  Heather Murphy is Slate's photo editor, and she is the creator of this new photo blog.  It is expected to feature a wide range of photographs and projects.

Take a look at what has been featured so far:  Behold

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Camille Paglia on Capitalism and Art

Professor Camille Paglia is a thinker and a philosopher.  Her views about the current demise of fine art, and how fine art can gain new life is sure to provoke.  Read her thoughts, beliefs, and ideas about fine in this Wall Street Journal article she wrote here.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Photo For the Day: The Old Dam

My wife and I enjoy taking walks, and sometimes we find pleasant places to rest.  Such was the case this past 추석 holiday season when we spotted this old dam late in the afternoon.  While my wife napped, I set up my tripod along the edge of the rocky stream.  

When I photograph a scene that requires a long exposure time, I will use the tripod and snap the shot using a shutter release cable.  Additionally, I will lock-up the camera's mirror to further ensure there isn't any wobbling or shaking during the exposure.

The Old Dam
© 2012 Mark Eaton
ISO: 50
Aperture: f32
Shutter Speed: 2 sec.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Marilyn Monroe is at the U-Square Gallery

My wife and I received a very generous gift from our middle-daughter's boyfriend.  We took advantage of our time off due to the South Korean 추석 holiday to cash in the gift at the U-Square located in Gwangju-si, Jeollanam-do.  We took the express bus to Gwangju, and it just so happens that U-Square is the home of the express bus terminal in Gwangju.  It was very convenient for us.

We bought something special for my wife, which used up the alloted gift amount in one fell swoop.  She decided she needed to visit one of the hair salons in the square, and that left me with the opportunity to wander.  There is plenty to see and do at U-Square, so I decided to visit the U-Square Gallery.

Marilyn, Forever is the current exhibition at the gallery, and it is simply an amazing presentation of one of the most famous of all pop culture icons in modern history.  I wonder why this event wasn't advertised or highlighted more thoroughly.  Regardless, the event began September 26, and it will conclude October 22, 2012.

There are a large number of smaller sized photographs in the large display cases that face out into the square itself.  Inside the gallery are about a dozen large sized photographs by Bert Stern and Lawrence Schiller, with the majority being Mr. Schiller's work.  While a visitor takes in the large number of photographs and images of Marilyn Monroe in various forms of display within the gallery, an LP (long playing) record spins out Ms. Monroe's songs on a traditional record player.  A separate room showed movies that starred Marilyn Monroe.

Among the large photographs exhibited on the gallery walls, a visitor can read the poignant words that she uttered during her too short life. 

I enjoyed the artistic approach Bert Stern took when he photographed Marilyn Monroe.  Lawrence Schiller is well known for taking a more dynamic, maybe a more candid type shot of his subjects.

Of interest to me, and I'm sure to other photographers, are the contact sheets that are also a part of the exhibition.  To see the markings and notes on the sheets made by the photographer is an interesting lesson to learn about what was important to highlight and to publish.  Seeing an aide holding up the white balance card to Marilyn Monroe's face in some of the frames was very interesting to me.  The professional at work getting it done correctly before, during, and after a shoot.

To learn more about the photographer Bert Stern, visit this website:  Bert Stern: Original Madman.

To learn more about the multifaceted Lawrence Schiller, visit this website:  Lawrence Schiller.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Fred Mount: Adventurer of Life

When I first saw an uncredited photograph that I later learned was taken by Fred Mount, it was floating around somewhere within that realm called the internet.  I was pleasantly surprised when I saw the same image on his site not too long ago.  I contacted Fred, whose home base is in Buffalo, New York, and he graciously accepted the offer to be featured on this blog.  I'm glad I asked, too.

Please allow me to take care of an administrative task by stating that each photograph in this article is © Fred Mount.

To start, there are three things that matter most to him:  His wife, his motorcycle, and his camera.  Fred has a sense of humor, which is essential in my opinion.  He has a brutal honesty I find refreshing.  He carries with him a notebook to write down an idea at the moment.  After letting the idea sit for a while, he will write and sketch a scene for later composition.

I view Fred Mount's photographic work as fine art.  I like the vision, the creativity, the courage, and the results of his work.  However, Fred doesn't want to be put in a box or defined by someone else's labels.  His words are best used to describe:

"I don't consider myself an artist or a photographer.  I see myself more as an adventurer of life.  I happen to use a camera to get these visions out of my head.  Without some kind of release I would probably explode or implode whichever happens to come first."

 High Maintenance Woman
Blinded by Herself
© Fred Mount

In order to graduate from college, Fred needed to take a course to fulfill the arts requirement for his degree.  Yes, it was a photography course.  What happened next?  Fred continued to work with a camera to keep from being bored after the conclusion of the class.  I shall use his own words:

"I am the type of person who always has a project and who is always moving.  I like to say I'll relax when I'm dead; until then I have shit to do."

The Wandering Man
© Fred Mount

Fred exudes a lot of passion and emotion, which is evident to me from viewing his photography.  More of his thoughts about photography and what drives him to create:

"My motivation is still partly to keep boredom at bay, but it has evolved into something so much more than that.  For me it's become an addiction.  I have photography on the brain, and there's no getting rid of it.  Richard Avedon definitely got it right when he said, 'If a day goes by without my doing something related to photography, it's as though I've neglected something essential to my existence; as though I'd forgotten to wake up.'  It's maddening when all you can think about is doing photography, but you're stuck at work."

The Remembering Warrior
© Fred Mount

Fred began his creative journey at age eleven when he started playing Dungeons and Dragons.  He is a story teller, and he can take viewers into an imaginary world through photography.  One can surmise that it isn't always a beautiful world.  The story, the metaphor, and even the physical is sometimes dark.

The Lost Innocent
© Fred Mount

Fred was in a dark period in his life when he gained an interest in photography.  Photography was the vehicle to release anger, emptiness, and frustration.  Growth has been painful, even disheartening, but there isn't any other choice but to move forward -- like an addict looking for the next fix.  As he has matured, his photographic work has more meaning, and it has a message to share.  To emphasize the point, he states:

"This is very important to me:  aesthetics are nice, but for me if a photograph doesn't have a deeper meaning, then what's the point of showing it?"

If there is a person who has inspired him, it would be one of his undergraduate teachers, Stephen Houseknecht (Mr. Houseknecht's photography can be viewed here).  It was Mr. Houseknecht who taught Fred the basics of photography such as composition and color correction.  It was he who taught Fred to get the photograph right in the camera.  From this teacher Fred learned a most valuable lesson and that is to "not give a damn what anyone else thinks of my work."    

The Giant Balloon series was shot with Climb in Balloons, which can be imported from Italy.  At the time, Fred was a maintenance man in Buffalo, and he had access to many different buildings and locations that provided a fantastic setting for the series.  The ever handy shop vac was used to inflate the balloons, and while lubed up with a silicone based lubricant, a model would climb inside it.  As it happens, Fred's favorite image from the series is pictured below...In the Absence of Hot Air.  The balloon deflated by accident around the model, yet everyone kept their composure, and Fred was able to get a couple of shots of that scene.

 In the Absence of Hot Air
© Fred Mount

     Woman Trapped by Her 
Unwillingness to Just Stand
© Fred Mount

Fred is aware that creativity cannot be forced.  The fluidity of creativity must flow naturally and with some ease.  His project "Angels Over Seoul" is a case in point.  The first two photo sessions went well, however, a sense of stagnation became present and the project was shelved.  If the feel for the project returns, then shooting will resume.  On a personal note, I believe the images are marvelous.

Angel Overlooking Seoul
© Fred Mount

Lucy the Angel
© Fred Mount

How Fred completes some of his photographs can be illustrated by the Floating Orb series.  He taped a 3 foot balloon to his Alien Bees 7 inch reflector prior to taking the shot, and then removed the stand of the reflector during the post production phase.  It wasn't easy, but the results are impressive.  It is taking what is imagined and doing what is necessary to share the story.

Woman Ignores What is
Right in Front of Her
© Fred Mount

The Light That is 
Hard to Ignore
© Fred Mount

The Water War series provided a chance for Fred and his wife to have some fun.  The Alien Bees were set up in a triangular formation around the models, and for eight hours with over 100 water balloons expended Water War was shot. 

Water War 01
© Fred Mount

Water War 02
© Fred Mount

Water War 03
© Fred Mount

Fred and his wife are currently fulfilling a dream of traveling the world by living and working in South Korea.  They will see more places and experience different cultures before returning to Buffalo in order to see a couple of other dreams bear fruit:  gallery representation, and eventually opening a gallery.  It is Fred's desire to provide young artists a place to show their artwork, and to build a community of artists willing to support each other.

Beginning October 26, 2012, Fred will be exhibiting his photography in a large group event at the 2012 Jeonju Biennale.  The theme for this show is Paper Road.  This is his first exhibition outside the USA.  The following is the address of the venue hosting the Jeonju Biennale:

2012 Jeonju Biennale: 'Paper Road'
2012 전주 비엔날레 조형작가전 “페이퍼로드 – 백색의 향연”

GALLERY: Jeonbuk Yeseolhwaegwan 전북 예술회관
ADDRESS: Jeonlabuk-Do, Jeonju City, Pungnam Dong
1, 26-1 전라북도 전주시 풍남동1가26-1
DATE: October 26, 2012 to November 1, 2012
2012년 10월 26일 – 2012년 11월 1일

In November 2012, he will be showing in Spark Fest, which will be held in Seoul.  He will be involved with the setting up and promotion of this event, and that is exciting for him as it will help him learn important details for his future goal of opening his own gallery.

To see more of Fred Mount's photography, please visit his website:  Fred Mount.  I do like his work.