André Kertész and Bill Brandt produced images which distorted form. They explored the use of close-ups, unusual angles, light and shadow, and optical effects to create abstract images, using a variety of subject matter.
My images are digitally manipulated composites made from photographs I find online. Currently, I have a database of over 26 thousand high resolution photos in my collection. The number of found images I work with in a piece can vary from 12 to 30. On the more complex pieces I’ve used upwards of 50. I generally sample sections from photographs I find interesting and use them as building blocks. I assemble these “blocks” together in Photoshop to create a nonexistent space that mimics a photograph. I do not use a camera at any stage in this process. Generally I prefer to work in a kind of organic way. I start with a vague idea and then let the pieces inform my editing process. Some things fit together well and others do not. It is very similar to solving a puzzle except it gets more difficult as I progress, instead of easier. Most of the time, if I pre-conceptualize the work too heavily, it becomes more of a compromise and forced. I prefer the process to be one of discovery, the final result always seems to be much more effective. I am interested in how an image can have the potential to unfold and suggest something outside of itself. By this I mean something beyond the obvious and only discovered through a continued process of viewing. It is this act of “looking” that I find fascinating because it does not follow a linear progression like language but is interactive and random. I’ve focused on photography as a medium because of the cultural misunderstanding that it has a kind of built-in objectivity. This allows me to set up a visual tension within my work, to make it resonate and lure the viewer further inside. - Jim Kazanjian
Susan Burnstine Susan Burnstine portrays her dream-like visions entirely in-camera, rather than with post-processing manipulations. To achieve this, she created twenty-one hand-made film cameras and lenses that are frequently unpredictable and technically challenging. The cameras are primarily made out of plastic, vintage camera parts and random household objects and the single element lenses are molded out of plastic and rubber. Learning to overcome their extensive limitations has her to rely on instinct and intuition... the same tools that are key when trusting in the unseen.