Art Is Where You Find It; It’s All Greek To Me Page 2
The subtitle of Mark Wainer's site is "painterly images," which he says is an attempt to discover and present the visual beauty that exists in both special and everyday places. All of his photographs are digitally "handcrafted to achieve a unique appearance of painterly natural media." That statement may either make your mouth water or set your teeth on edge, but give it a chance, his work is outstanding. Wainer's site contains five galleries and most have separate rooms containing up to 10 images. While some images in "The Water's Edge" collection look like they could serve as matte paintings for Shrek 4 (it's in production, no kidding) others, such as "Boats in Fog, Northam," drip with a minimalistic style.
The "Stairways" gallery includes the kind of vertigo-inducing, Escher-like photographs cum silkscreens that contain echoes of the style if not imagery of the artist Joseph Craig English (www.josephcraigenglish.com). I loved the, dare I say it, photo-realistic photographs found in the "Places We Live" collection. Wainer's images, such as "Roses and Blue Door," contain the kind of ambiance and fussy style found in Louis Cantillo's walk-into photographs. These really make you want to order large prints by clicking the pricing and availability link at the top of the separate image window. By the way, Wainer's system of online display and print ordering is one of the best that I have found on any photographer's website.
Justin Casalandra's gracefully simple website contains nine galleries of subjects ranging from sports to weddings, which I've always considered to be a form of combat photography challenging shooters on physical, psychological, as well as aesthetic levels. Casalandra's "Wedding Day" gallery contains six collections, including one in black and white, while the others sprinkle monochrome grace notes through his coverage of the event, sometimes even combining the two styles. His work is displayed as tiny thumbnails at the bottom of a window that displays photographs in a size that's large enough to appreciate Casalandra's craftsmanship.
All of these images are done in a fashion that used to be called "candid" but what now gets hung with the photojournalism or reportage moniker. No matter what you call it, Casalandra applies the skills he learned as a staff newspaper shooter to capture the moment while at the same time remaining--it seems to me, anyway--unobtrusive. His "Sports" gallery is full of colorful "thrill of victory and agony of defeat" decisive moments focused mainly on stick and ball sports (I guess shot-put is a ball?) but he tosses in some nicely photographed motocross for us gearheads. The "Nature" gallery is just the opposite, filled with quiet, delicate Thoreau moments of birds, flowers, and walks in the woods. If you haven't figured it out yet, Casalandra is one versatile guy who combines a prodigious talent for photographing the peak of sports action as well as a quiet moment of a shy flower girl trying not to look at a bride.
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