Fran’s Still Lifes

This is an enthusiastic invitation for you to go see ma femme’s lovely photography–mostly very large-scale still lifes (usually printed 32″ x 24″) on her website. Her new work, probably eight pieces, will be featured in a 2-person show at Addison Woolley Gallery here in Portland, ME. Runs through the month of May, 2012. Meanwhile, go see her online images. It will be time well-spent!

Photo-Synthesizing – Photocollage in Photoshop

Here’s a video tutorial on methods of making complex images in Photoshop from parts of other photos–blended, overlaid, resized, warped, flattened…imagined. This is basically how I work to make the giant photocollages referenced in the right margin. Should add, however, that if I worked with this degree of meticulousness and pointillistic layering, my large murals, that normally take a month or two to complete, would surely take years! Now, when someone asks me how I make my large murals, I’ll just point them to this page, and let them imagine my constructing an image with hundreds of layers active, and a width of 42,600 pixels (actual working canvas for much of my work) in the manner illustrated here! All secrets revealed!

What is obvious and true in this video is the central importance of masking and making selections in constructing any photocollage: it is the hardest part of the work, by far.

My Giant Photocollages

I began making very large computer-based photocollages in the early 90s, using early (and primitive) imaging software, and then, when it arrived, the master tool for the genre: Photoshop. As my skills, preoccupations, and visual sense grew, I eventually settled on construction of very large murals, utilizing hundreds of photos each, painstakingly constructed over weeks and months, and resulting in works that, printed, are typically 8′ to 12′ in length in panoramic format (usually 2′ in height). From the beginning I called these works “surreallegories”.  My default genre is satire (political, religious, aesthetic, erotic, and  cultural: cityscapes, reimagined Old Masters, political allegories, and snarky commentaries on the “art world,” and human folly in all its instantiations. Click HERE to visit a website devoted to some of them, displayed in a format that allows extreme zooming without loss of resolution and focus, to make exploring them, even on a small computer monitor, quite simple.

Addison Woolley Gallery in Portland, ME

My wife, F., was in on the beginning of what has become one of the more successful art galleries in Maine, specializing in photography.  I am also represented by Addison Woolley, and serve as webmaster for all exhibits there.  Check out the website and exhibition calendar, and, if you are in Portland, stop in to see some of the most interesting work being done in the state.