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December 2011. Action in the township of Alexandra in Johannesburg, South Africa. Beautiful !!!


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Polixeni Papapetrou lives and works in Melbourne, Victoria. She has shown her work in over forty solo exhibitions and participated in over seventy group exhibitions in Australia and internationally. In 2009, she was the recipient of the Josephine Ulrick-Win Shubert Photography Award. She is represented in private and institutional collections and has been awarded numerous grants from the Australia Council and Arts Victoria. She holds the degrees of PhD 2007 (Monash University), MA Media Arts 1997 (RMIT University), Bachelor of Laws and Bachelor of Arts 1984, (University of Melbourne).

www.polixenipapapetrou.net

When and how did you become interested in Photography?




I worked as an attorney until 2000 when I decided to become full time artist. While working as a lawyer I had an interest in photography that went beyond looking to actually wanting to make images. I began studying photography as a part-time student in 1993. In 2007, I graduated with a PhD in fine arts from Monash University, Melbourne. So I did not have the usual entrance into the art world, coming into it much later than you would normally expect.

What gear do you mainly shoot with?


I use a Hasselblad 503 CW with either an 80 mm lens or a longer focal length lens of 150mm. For the past few years I have been using Kodak NC 160 film but I’m thinking of making a switch to another type of film. I still use film rather than work digitally probably more so out of habit than for any ideological reason. Digital photography is a more economical and efficient way to make pictures today, but I love the quality of film such as the grain (although my printer curses grain). I also like the way that film slows me down when I’m working and how it makes me consider every frame that I take.

What is your #1 source of inspiration?



I work with my children and the work is borne out of our experiences together. They are my inspiration. Every artist needs a muse. 


Many times photographers find themselves with a full schedule of paying gigs, ending up with little time for doing the work they truly love. Do you struggle with finding time for your personal work?


I don’t work as a commercial photographer so I fortunately don’t have to divide my work between commercial and personal. I would find trying to balance the commercial vs personal very difficult and I’m relieved to say that I don’t have to resolve this problem.

What is your all time favorite genre to shoot?



constructed or directorial photography.

Do you have any upcoming shows or events you want our readers to know about?




I just exhibited in Bestiaire: VOZ Galerie, Boulogne-Billancourt, Paris, France and have work at the 3rd Biennale Photoquai, Le musée du quai Branly, from 13 September 2011 – 13 January 2012. I am showing in the exhibition New Worlds at The Museum of Photography, l in Seoul from 27 August to 26 September 2011. My work was included in the exhibition Celebrate Summer at Jenkins Johnson Gallery, San Francisco until 27 August and part of Inside Out at Jenkins Johnson Gallery New York from 8 September – 29 October 2011

What is the one thing you feel makes your style or your work unique?

I think that there are many artists currently working with the subject matter of childhood, history, landscape or who create a narrative. I think that what makes my work different is that I combine all of these elements on location using the landscape as a backdrop to stage a drama and tell a story. My work is not made in Photoshop, but on location with camera and film. In the past this authenticity would not have been a point of difference, but it is becoming more so today.

If you could photograph anyone, (past/present/future), who would it be and why?



What a question. If I could photograph anyone before the invention of photography it would be Bach or Shakespeare-that’s a hard call. Being more realistic, however, and just going back to the 19th century, it would be mathematician, logician, story teller and photographer, Charles Dodgson or Lewis Carroll. He had a huge intellect and his contribution to academia and to cultural history has been profound. Today, I’d like photograph Cindy Sherman because I would like to dress her up in my costumes. Looking into the future, it would be amazing to photograph my children as old people, but I’ll be doing this from the other side with my invisible camera.

What’s your dream photo field trip?



Any landscape with good weather, nice light, some interesting cloud formations and not having to worry about deadly snakes and annoying flies in the Australian country side.

What’s your post production process?



I scan my negatives to digital files and the printing is done using Photoshop. Film can misbehave in various situations, the problems caused by the film processing itself and the problems caused by the transfer of film to digital, must be resolved before we can start refining the essence of the picture. I collaborate with Les Walkling, an artist and printer in Melbourne, who prepares my files for printing and turns them into the pictures that are published. There is an expertise that Les brings into the work which is harder to quantify and post-production with him is as much a philosophical process as it is a technical one. You can read all about this awesome man on his website at www.leswalkling.com

If you had unlimited resources to purchase any type of camera, what would it be and why?




A digital Hasselblad camera. I love the way that the Hasselblad feels and looks and the convenience of the digital capture would remove a couple of steps from the process I currently use.

Who are your favorite photographers and why?



I love the spectacle of the dress-ups and performance that appeared in 19th century French and English tableaux photography. The photographers who worked in the tableaux in the 19th century such as Julia Margaret Cameron, Lewis Carroll, Clementina Lady Hawarden and the photographers who photographed Hannah Cullwick and the Countess de Castiglione were ahead of their time. The Victorian photographers were dealing with the themes of illusion, symbolism, the imaginary, theatre and performance. Their work feels very contemporary to me. More recent photographers who work like this and inspire include, Jeff Wall, Ralph Eugene Meatyard who created a family of characters who performed narratives and Cindy Sherman who constantly presents us with an incredible array of characters and personalities. I’m intrigued by the way Yasumasa Morimura reinvents himself and the story-telling magic of Miwa Yanagi’s work. I admire the work of photographers who portray the world around them and in doing so also reveal as much about their inner world. I’m talking about artists such as Diane Arbus, Roger Ballen, Richard Billingham, Martin Parr and Nan Goldin.

What has been the shining moment of your career thus far?

Finding my subject matter.

Do you have any tips/tricks or advice for amateur photo nerds who are looking to shoot full time or students who are just starting out?



I would encourage photographers and students to find the subject matter that inspires them and gives them endless possibilities for interpretation. This is about finding your voice. You usually don’t have to travel very far to find your ideas because they may already be existing under your nose. I think that you must also think critically about what makes a good image. In other words, what is cliche, what is hackneyed, what is a stereotype, what is gratuitous, what is ideologically insensitive etc. Photography is easy in that anyone can take a bad picture, but it requires a lot of thought and work to create a good picture.

What’s the soundtrack to your life and/or your favorite music to listen to while editing?


When I go on my daily walk I listen to music which ranges from classical to 70s to what my friends send me. I have musician friends who send me their music and listening to their compositions is special. When I work, I work in silence. I love the silence as much as the music.

what’s your favorite hang (when shooting or not)?



Home, home and home. Everything I need to make me happy is there.

Best chow (meal/snack) to get you ready for a shoot or best way to celebrate a brilliant capture?



During the day it would have to be a toasted cheese sandwich made with quality bread and cheese and cooked to perfection! In the evening, I always have one good glass of red wine.

will you share with us one of your favorite shots?

I like The Loners from my series Between Worlds. It’s a comment about getting older and feeling more physically more fragile and vulnerable, even feeling more isolated as the world goes spinning past. In my picture, the rabbits in their old age have a quiet life and spend their time by going on walks by the ocean.

Your favorite photo by another photographer?

This is an impossible question and unanswerable. I can’t point to one photograph in the history of photography and single it out. My answer would change everyday as I discovered something new about a picture. So today it is going to be ‘Snow white’ by MiwaYanagi. I love the double spookiness of the figure and the reflection in the mirror.

©MiwaYanagi

Has your passion for photography changed at all since turning “pro”?



I never considered myself turning pro as think that this type of terminology belongs in the commercial world. I make pictures which is something I have always loved doing, even before my work was recognized. Nothing has changed in this regard.

Do you have a favorite / lucky item of clothing, outfit or uniform that you like to wear when shooting an important assignment or project?



I’ve learned that it’s a good idea to wear the right shoes in the landscape. I have taken a few falls because I was wearing the wrong type of shoes. And being a Melbourne girl, the colour black is de riguer, whether I’m taking pictures or not.

Are you a photography nerd or a camera gangsta?



I’m just an Ebay gangsta.

What’s your sign?

Scorpio

who would you like to see interviewed by photopolus next?

Anna Gaskell. I love the way she creates narrative in her work.



©PolixeniPapapetrou

If you are a photographer and would like to be featured as a future/potential Art Star on our blog, email us!
info@photopolus.com or ange@angefitzgerald.com, subject: Art Star.
*please include your website and examples of your work

____

Nick Pironio (1982) is a fine art documentary photographer based in Raleigh, North Carolina. Prior to arriving in North Carolina, he worked as a photographer at the Hanover Evening Sun, The Monroe Evening News and the Fayetteville Observer. After his time at the Observer, Nick had a short stint as the photographer for the John Edwards Presidential Campaign. Since then Nick has worked on projects such as documenting a developing denim company, Raleigh Denim and a series of Urban Chicken portraits.

www.pironio.com

When and how did you become interested in Photography?

When I was a senior in high school one of my best friends got me a job at a camera shop and I was allowed to take home and use any camera in the shop and process my own film. I was able to make a lot of mistakes and just learn on a daily basis.

What gear do you mainly shoot with?

For my projects I shoot with my Rolleiflex or Hasselblad 500c. When I’m just out and about I use my Leica m6 or Konica Hexar AF. Polaroids I use a Land 180 and for clients needing same or next day I use a Canon 5d MKII. I like to think of cameras as different flavors of the same tool, so it depends on what I’m in the mood for or what the job calls for.

What is your #1 source of inspiration?

Art, right now the work of Austrian painter Egon Schiele. I’ve spent quite some time studying his portraits. I’m interested in raw emotion.

Many times photographers find themselves with a full schedule of paying gigs, ending up with little time for doing the work they truly love. Do you struggle with finding time for your personal work?

I make sure to schedule my projects as much as I can and if I have an assignment or a shoot for a client I usually just reschedule the project. That way the project is always on the calendar and always on my mind. As long as there is money in my pockets then I’m out documenting something.

What is your all time favorite genre to shoot (portraiture, conceptual, documentary, commercial, etc..)?

Right now its documentary portraiture, but I also like to do street photography. You could say documentary portraiture is my passion and street is my hobby.

What is the one thing you feel makes your style or your work unique?

I have been told by an editor that I have an ability to get up close and personal quickly with my subjects. It’s something I’ve always been able to do.

if you could photograph anyone, (past/present/future), who would it be and why?

It would have to be Tarek al-Tayyib Mohamed Bouazizi . The street vendor who set himself on fire in protest and became the catalyst for the Tunisian revolution. His one selfless act has sparked so much to happen in such a short amount of time.

what’s your dream photo field trip?

I plan on getting lost in South America for a while. What would make it a dream is if I was paid to do so.

what’s your post production process?

If its B&W I develop it myself (color I take to a lab) and then scan the negatives with an Epson v750 . If I find a great image I rescan the negative on a liquid mount for the interwebs. Then I take the negative to my darkroom and print. For digital I shoot>ingest>caption>edit/tone>deliver media>archive.

if you had unlimited resources to purchase any type of camera, what would it be and why?

One day I’ll shoot 4×5 (I haven’t researched it much so I don’t know which 4×5 I would get), but for now I just need an endless supply of film and chemicals.

who are your favorite photographers and why?

Some of these people I know and the rest I would like to get to know:
Cary Conover His street style is amazing and inspires.
Jody Rogac her portrait work is full of beauty.
Doug Dubois I just started looking at his work, but its very appealing to me.
Peter Hoffman his portraits and projects motivate me to go out and create.
Trent Parke and Minutes to Midnight is my inspiration to get lost in South America for a while.

what has been the shining moment of your career thus far? (or, describe your “big break”)

I don’t think its happened yet. Maybe it has (time will tell), but right now I feel like the peak of that mountain is still covered by clouds.

do you have any tips/tricks or advice for amateur photo nerds who are looking to shoot fulltime or students who are just starting out?

One thing I’ve learned that should be helpful to other photographers, is once you find your style you have to focus that style into projects/essays and into the type of work you want to do (commercial, editorial, art whatever) otherwise you just have a bunch of singles scattered around that don’t make sense. Yeah you take beautiful pictures but why? This advice really only helps the photographer that is out there everyday shooting, but for no defined reason.

what’s the soundtrack to your life and/or your favorite music to listen to while editing?

Depends on the day. When I need energy I play something like Justice. If I’m trying to slow down I play Grateful Dead. Right now (at this very moment) I’m listening to Little Lion Man by Mumford & Sons.

what’s your favorite hang (when shooting or not)?

My neighbor’s house, there is always food and people just hanging out. They remind me to slow down and rest.

best chow (meal/snack) to get you ready for a shoot? or best way to celebrate a brilliant capture?

Ha! I’m a sucker for a Jersey Mike’s sub especially when there isn’t time to cook. After a shoot, during an edit or generally all the time is hummus and pita.

will you share with us one of your favorite shots?

I currently like Patrick Bradley in my Urban Chickens project but my favorite changes daily.

your favorite photo by another photographer?

Right now its this one (number 9 in Doug Dubois’ Family Photos 1999-2006). Its just a great captured moment, something I’m always looking for.

has your passion for photography changed at all since turning “pro”?

My passion for photography has grown. To be able to photograph everyday is an amazing thing. I’m glad I am able to do so.

do you have a favorite / lucky item of clothing, outfit or uniform that you like to wear when shooting an important assignment or project?

I don’t have anything lucky, but for some reason all my cameras have that thin Domke strap on them so I guess I like those.

are you a photography nerd or a camera gangsta?

I have no clue.

what’s your sign?

Aries

who would you like to see interviewed by photopolus next?

Cary Conover



©NickPironio

If you are a photographer and would like to be featured as a future/potential Art Star on our blog, email us!
info@photopolus.com or ange@angefitzgerald.com, subject: Art Star.
*please include your website and examples of your work
____

Born in Dallas, Texas on November 29, 1982, Nadyia enjoyed painting and photography as a child and young adult, and in high school, became interested in graphic design. She studied fine art photography and majored in graphic design at school and recently has started to explore video production, which she hopes to incorporate into her photography.

www.nadyia.net

When and how did you become interested in Photography?

My father sparked my interest in photography when I was fairly young. He’s an amazing underwater photographer and taught me a lot about what I know now.

What gear do you mainly shoot with?

Canon 40D and Canon 5D, and on occasion, film.

What is your #1 source of inspiration?

This is hard to pinpoint because I draw inspiration from so many different things. But I guess with photography, it’s people. I try to bring to life what makes a person beautiful, sexy, or sometimes, vulnerable. Sometimes I like to shoot someone in a way no one else has, just for the purpose of making and exposing something different.

Many times photographers find themselves with a full schedule of paying gigs, ending up with little time for doing the work they truly love. Do you struggle with finding time for your personal work?

Definitely. Sometimes my job gets incredibly busy and I just don’t have time to shoot my personal work. But it’s important to me that I have that outlet, so I try not to go too long without it.

What is your all time favorite genre to shoot (portraiture, conceptual, documentary, commercial, etc..)?

My favorite is definitely conceptual photography. I like to actually think and plan a shoot or even a specific shot. I love seeing ideas I have become real. I also love collaborating with other artists, models, etc and making something amazing.

Do you have any upcoming shows or events you want our readers to know about?

I just moved to Austin and I’m incredibly grateful at how welcoming other photographers and artists have been here so far. I’m already planning and scheduling shoots with another photographer for a collaborative mixed media project. I’m really excited about it and can’t wait to see what comes of it.

What is the one thing you feel makes your style or your work unique?

I don’t know if it makes my work unique, but I pay close attention to detail, so much so that it annoys me sometimes.

if you could photograph anyone, (past/present/future), who would it be and why?

My grandmother when she was my age, because she helped raise me and because she was a really beautiful, genuine person.

what’s your dream photo field trip?

Spain, just because it’s the one place I’ve always wanted to go to that I haven’t yet.

what’s your post production process?

I bring the raw images into Lightroom then do most of the editing in Photoshop.

if you had unlimited resources to purchase any type of camera, what would it be and why?

I’d probably stick with what I have and just get more lenses. I don’t have enough and I’m always borrowing some from other photographers.

who are your favorite photographers and why?

My father, of course. Also an amazing man named A.Kaye, he’s been my main mentor and a really wonderful friend. He started out as a sports photographer for professional sports and is now photographing for a project, Heart of Women, to raise money for women who have suffered domestic abuse. I also really love Mark Sink, all of his work is really interesting but I’m fascinated most by what he does with wet plates.

what has been the shining moment of your career thus far? (or, describe your “big break”)

Being published in several magazines and publications. That’s always a good thing.

do you have any tips/tricks or advice for amateur photo nerds who are looking to shoot fulltime or students who are just starting out?

Make sure it’s a passion of yours before you jump into it. It sounds mean, but I don’t like being in the same industry with people who don’t care and are only doing it because it seems like a cool thing to do. Also, remember that most photography is a collaborative effort, and being able to respect those that you work with is essential.

what’s the soundtrack to your life and/or your favorite music to listen to while editing?

When it comes to music, I’m all over the place. But when I’m editing, a majority of the time I’m listening to David Bowie, Bjork, or Saul Williams.

what’s your favorite hang (when shooting or not)?

I don’t have one favorite spot. I like trying out new places, especially in Austin because there is so much here.

best chow (meal/snack) to get you ready for a shoot? or best way to celebrate a brilliant capture?

Usually something light like a salad so I can still be pretty active. And if I’m celebrating, probably Makers or Bulleit.

will you share with us one of your favorite shots?


I have so many favorites, but this one I just love because the image I had in my head came out exactly as how you see it in the photograph.

your favorite photo by another photographer?

I can’t pick just one photo, but go here and check out the photos in his wet plate galleries.

has your passion for photography changed at all since turning “pro”?

No, but the direction I’m going definitely has.

do you have a favorite / lucky item of clothing, outfit or uniform that you like to wear when shooting an important assignment or project?

Not really. As long as it’s comfortable, I’m good to go.

are you a photography nerd or a camera gangsta?

Both!

what’s your sign?

Sagittarius

who would you like to see interviewed by photopolus next?

Anyone I’ve already mentioned, also maybe J Woods (who does amazing photo composites) or Hutch MuselessMime (talented photographer/videographer in Dallas). I have worked with all of them and really admire their work.

Angela Ryan


Ivy


RS


©NadyiaMarshal

If you are a photographer and would like to be featured as a future/potential Art Star on our blog, email us!
info@photopolus.com or ange@angefitzgerald.com, subject: Art Star.
*please include your website and examples of your work

____

I am a photographer and artist living and working in Richmond, Virginia. Currently, I am working on two personal photographic projects. Notes from U.S. Route 1, which is a survey of the blue highways from Maine to Key West, Florida and then the Mangini Studio Series, which is essentially a collaboration with photographer Terry Brown and is focused upon me styling my hair and heading to a commercial photo studio. Recently, I have taken time off from an adjunct teaching position at Virginia Commonwealth University to found and promote an independent publishing company, dedicated to producing fine art photography books. The first release from the new imprint, Candela Books, is a monograph of New York photographer Gita Lenz and was released in September of 2010.
www.eyecaramba.com

When and how did you become interested in Photography?

I primarily worked in printmaking and drawing as an undergraduate at University of Virginia but I took a couple of photo classes then and that introduction took root shortly after I graduated and began sharing a darkroom with a friend of mine.

What gear do you mainly shoot with?

If I do not have a specific photo to make that requires me to dust off something more unusual, then my bag generally contains a Rolleiflex TLR, a Holga, a Diana and maybe something digital.

What is your #1 source of inspiration?

I haven’t ever ranked my inspirations. I do try to absorb a lot of other photographer’s work. I love photo books. I really think you can evolve greatly by just paying a little attention to what is going on in the world around..

Many times photographers find themselves with a full schedule of paying gigs, ending up with little time for doing the work they truly love. Do you struggle with finding time for your personal work?

I have worked professionally in photography in a few different. Early on, I did a lot of assist work for commercial photographers. A little later, I spent five years as a researcher and editor at a fine art stock photo agency, then I have taught at a few different institutions, and I work commercially still. In recent years, the fine art work has gotten a little more traction but work and personal work are still kind of intertwined. The publishing of books is certainly a job now, but it will take a few years for this enterprise to grow to speed. That is taking up a lot of my headspace at the moment.

What is your all time favorite genre to shoot?

I like photographing my friends and loved ones as much as anything. My favorite work is often diaristic, but I do enjoy the world at large also. In rough terms, I would call myself a shooter. I don’t spend enough time with the editing or promoting side of things perhaps, but I enjoy all manner of subjects.

Do you have any upcoming shows or events you want our readers to know about?

I will be mounting an exhibition of New York photographer Gita Lenz in a new studio and gallery space in Richmond, Virginia later this spring. This is essentially a second book release event from the book I published under the imprint Candela Books last fall. As for my personal work, I have a handful of group shows on the horizon.

What is the one thing you feel makes your style or your work unique?

I like to think I have a decent sense of humor. It is odd to think about but humor is a little under-represented in the fine art photo world. There is a lot of earnest work out there. There is poetic work, beautiful work, saddening work, life-changing work, process-oriented work, sensual work. But there is not a lot of humor relatively speaking. Not too many people come to mind quite honestly. Martin Parr, Ted Orland, David Graham, Bill Owens are all great. And there are many others who have touched on humor somewhere in their work but usually the earnest and serious work runs the roost.

if you could photograph anyone, who would it be?

Baron von Raschke

what’s your dream photo field trip?

I love gatherings, so Burning Man is definitely on the horizon… I actually do get around quite a bit but as a single parent the timing has always been terrible for me getting to Burning Man, as this is a big time commitment sitting squarely on that first week of school when parenting has always trumped my plans.
But one thing I would love to do more of is work in the delivery room. People are usually a little cagey about allowing me in to photograph their child being born because of the personal nature of the event. I always ask my friends and I am always denied. I will keep asking.

what’s your post production process?

I do most of my work in the darkroom. Post-production for digital work is pretty minimal. I try to keep retouching and corrections to mostly the types of adjustments I can do in the darkroom.

if you had unlimited resources to purchase any type of camera, what would it be?

I like old gear so, I seldom crave unattainable cameras. I did purchase a Canon 5D a couple of years ago and that is a pretty awesome camera. It does amazing things but it still is lined up behind a few other clunkier cameras I would rather use.

who are your favorite photographers?

Roger Ballen, Ralph Eugene Meatyard, Linda Connor, Emmett Gowin, Sally Mann, Shelby Lee Adams, Keith Carter, E.J. Bellocq

what has been the shining moment of your career thus far?

My big break might have been studying with Linda Connor at the San Francisco Art Institute now probably 20 years ago. I had taken a number of courses by the time I met Linda but it was while I was studying with her that I recognized that art was not something you simply do, and is rather something that you live.

do you have any tips/tricks or advice for amateur photo nerds who are looking to shoot full time or students who are just starting out?

Try to say yes to everyone. Even many of the shit jobs can be done so that they turn out brilliantly. I remember seeing Mary Ellen Mark’s project a few years ago where she made portraits at senior proms. I was thinking that if I had been asked to photograph all the kids at a prom, I probably would have arrived at a photo booth style of solution and would have hoped to have hit a technically capable mark as a minimum requirement for the work. But the work she did was just so so good that it made me reconsider my own work. It isn’t a shit job that trips you up, it is a shit mindset that can do the most damage.

what’s the soundtrack to your life?

It is pretty random…maybe Bon Iver, Neutral Milk Hotel, BBC news, NPR, Cracker, Etta James, Ruth Brown, Sparklehorse, Black Keys…

what’s your favorite hang?

I like collaboration, so a busy studio is a good place for me…with a few friends that also make some kind of art or mischief.

best chow (meal/snack) to get you ready for a shoot?

Chips and salsa?

will you share with us one of your favorite shots?


I love this image as I had traveled a a pretty good distance to photograph at this religious theme park for a project I was then working on. I arrived only to find that the park was closed for renovation, which was one of those moments when you curse your lazy ways and lack of preparation, etc. And then I took a moment and realized that the bus they used to block the entrance combined with the sign was pretty great. It was worth the trip.

your favorite photo by another photographer?

a french postcard I collected. Photographer unknown.

are you a photography nerd or a camera gangsta?

I consider myself more a nerd probably. A psychologically edgy nerd.

what’s your sign?

Aquarius

who would you like to see interviewed by photopolus next?

Susan Worsham



images below ©Gordon Stettinius

If you are a photographer and would like to be featured as a future/potential Art Star on our blog, email us!
info@photopolus.com or ange@angefitzgerald.com, subject: Art Star.
*please include your website and examples of your work

____


Support this project on KickStarter
by Bruce Gilden
About this project

Since the housing market crashed in 2008, millions of Americans caught up in the subprime mortgage crisis have lost their homes. This is not a secret in the communities that live with foreclosures. The devastation is shielded from the eyes of other sectors of society, however, including many of those that caused it.

For over two years, I have been documenting foreclosures in some of America’s hardest hit communities: Fort Myers, FL; Detroit, MI; and most recently, with support from the Magnum Foundation Emergency Fund, Fresno, CA. In addition to photographing, I interview Americans who have been evicted from their homes, or who are facing eviction, and who have been launched into a devastating cycle of suffering: family life becomes unstable; children are at risk; violence increases; and communities disintegrate.

Going to Nevada next is key to my project. The place was a mortgage casino, with developments popping up like mirages. Now they have the highest unemployment rate in the country and are caught in an impossible foreclosure spiral. I want to spend three weeks there, photographing and interviewing people touched by foreclosures, similar to what I’ve done in Florida, Michigan, and California. I am absolutely dedicated to tracking this story across the country and making sure people can’t escape what foreclosures actually look like. We can’t let this be swept under the rug or reduced to statistics. Only by showing the human cost is there any hope for systemic change.

You can see my earlier work on foreclosures here and on the Emergency Fund website. I will make this work available to advocacy groups working on the housing crisis.

The funds I’m asking for will cover my travel costs in Nevada for about three weeks, film, and a sound tech for interviews. Every extra dollar will go to extending the project to additional neighborhoods and communities. I’ll keep working on this story as long as I can stay on the road.

The stories of the lives of Americans caught in the great recession need to be told—and I need your support to tell them.

-Bruce Gilden

The Magnum Foundation is a 501(c)(3) organization, and supporters who elect not to receive a gift may take a tax deduction to the extent permitted by law.

Project location: Las Vegas, NV

Born and raised in Kansas, Cortney Andrews received her BFA in Photography & New Media from the Kansas City Art Institute and her MFA in Photography from the Rhode Island School of Design. She has exhibited in New York, Providence, Kansas City and throughout the US, and is a contributor to Bitch magazine. Her work explores female sexuality and desire through photography, film, and video installation. She currently lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.
www.cortneyandrews.com

When and how did you become interested in Photography?

Before I went to art school, I took a summer photo class at the university in my hometown, and I immediately became obsessed with the process. From the beginning, I was constructing narratives and scenes using my female friends as the subjects. I began experimenting with themes of identity, eroticism, and pain–it came very natural to me. The camera allowed me to play out all the things that I felt, but wasn’t able to express.

What gear do you mainly shoot with?

All of my work is shot on film with a Hasselblad.

What is your #1 source of inspiration?

Emotions, and how they are reflected on the body. I am specifically interested in the conflicts inherent to desire and identity.

Many times photographers find themselves with a full schedule of paying gigs, ending up with little time for doing the work they truly love. Do you struggle with finding time for your personal work?

I find that there is never enough time to make work. A large part of my process is failure, and there has to be time for that in order to explore, push boundaries, transgress, and change direction. I am constantly re-shooting things that didn’t come out as I had imagined, so this always puts me behind schedule. Having a job, photo related or not, always limits the time you can spend on personal projects, but this is a reality that all emerging artists have to struggle with.

Do you have any upcoming shows or events you want our readers to know about?

I was recently in an exhibition at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City entitled Thinking Photography: Five Decades at the Kansas City Art Institute, which was shown through January 2, 2011. My work will also be featured in an essay by Maria Elena Buszek titled “ Eros and Thanatos: Surrealism, psychoanalysis, and contemporary feminist art,” which is in the catalog accompanying the forthcoming exhibition In Wonderland: The Surrealist Adventures of Women Artists in Mexico and the United States, at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

What is the one thing you feel makes your style or your work unique?

My work is very intimate. Through the camera, I am interested in revealing parts of myself that would otherwise remain hidden. By performing scenarios that give visibility to the conflicts of desire and identity as I experience them, the viewer must question her or his own boundaries of self and other, real and fantasy.

if you could photograph anyone, (past/present/future), who would it be and why?

Pina Bausch. She was a dancer and choreographer, and a brilliant provocatrice. Although she was incredibly thin and fragile looking, she still had a very intimidating and intense presence. I like this contradiction. I would also love to photograph Beatrice Dalle….and the list goes on.

what’s your dream photo field trip?

I am generally the central subject performing in my work, but often there are friends and lovers who perform with me. With no time or cost constraints, I would love to have a small group of my friends travel with me throughout rural areas of France, Spain and Italy while scouting for locations. Upon finding a great location, we would set up there for a week while I choreograph the scenes and shoot, then we would move on to the next place.

what’s your post production process?

I scan all of my contact sheets and choose the best images before going to the lab to do high resolution scans. I do all the color correction and retouching, and return to the lab where I have digital c-prints made.

if you had unlimited resources to purchase any type of camera, what would it be and why?

I would probably buy a Canon 1D Mark IV Digital SLR. I don’t shoot digital for my photographs, but I shoot video, and this camera has the ability to shoot 24 fps HD (the same frame rate as film). I’m not a big tech geek with cameras, I love shooting film and I will continue to for as long as the market allows, but having a nice digital SLR, with HD video recording, is always convenient because I can instantly preview what I will shoot on film.

who are your favorite shooters and why?

I love Claude Cahun, Hans Bellmer, and Francesca Woodman because their images are transgressive, emotional, erotic, provocative, and haunting. They each subversively confront the social construction of gender and sexuality from a very personal perspective.

what has been the shining moment of your career thus far? (or, describe your “big break”)

I wouldn’t really say I’ve had a “big break” in my career. I am reminded of a great quote that I read recently from Jeffrey Eugenides, author of Middlesex and The Virgin Suicides. When asked about success, he replied: “Success doesn’t happen to you. It happens out in the world somewhere…Success is a kind of numbness, an analgesic. It feels like nothing. Failure, envy, these things have a far keener, physiological effect…Because the baser emotions are more fiery, and success, if anything, a temporary shelter from them.”

who would you like to see interviewed by photopol.us next?

Talia Chetrit




©CortneyAndrews

If you are a photographer and would like to be featured as a future/potential Art Star on our blog, email us!
info@photopolus.com or ange@angefitzgerald.com, subject: Art Star.
*please include your website and examples of your work

____

Born and raised in central Pennsylvania, Rachel Bee Porter holds an MFA in Photography and Related Media from Parsons the New School for Design, and a BFA in Professional Photographic Illustration from the Rochester Institute of Technology. She has exhibited at the Center for Photography in Woodstock and at the Samek Art Gallery at Bucknell University. Her work has most recently been seen at Aperture Gallery in New York City. She has contributed to several publications, including Creative Quarterly and Photographer’s Forum. She lives and works in New York City.
www.rachelbeeporter.com

When and how did you become interested in Photography?

when I was about eleven years old, I took a photography class at girl scout camp and then by the time I took a black and white class when I was in my sophomore year of high school, I was hooked.

What gear do you mainly shoot with?

If I can, I like to shoot with a Sinar 4×5. Otherwise, I primarily shoot with a Hasselblad or Nikon digital SLR.

What is your #1 source of inspiration?

Magazines and Movies

Many times photographers find themselves with a full schedule of paying gigs, ending up with little time for doing the work they truly love. Do you struggle with finding time for your personal work?

I’ve only been out of school and freelancing full time for a few months, but I can definitely see that it’s going to be a challenge to find the time to shoot personal work.

What is your all time favorite genre to shoot (portraiture, conceptual, documentary, commercial, etc..)?

Still life, hands down.

Do you have any upcoming shows or events you want our readers to know about?

I have a piece in the upcoming show “Insatiable: Our Rapacious Appetite for More” at Brandeis University that opens in late January.

What is the one thing you feel makes your style or work unique?

I think I have a different take on traditional food photography. I grew up reading home magazines and filing away all of that information … now I use my powers for evil rather than good.

if you could photograph anyone, (past/present/future), who would it be and why?

I don’t know…. I don’t really shoot too many people….

what’s your dream photo field trip?

Paris (though it may just be because I’ve never been there and would love to go…)

what’s your post production process?

My post production process is pretty simple. I primarily shoot film, which I then scan. Typically, I only tweak exposure and color, and then dust.

if you had unlimited resources to purchase any type of camera, what would it be and why?

a Sinar view camera. I love the look of 4×5 chromes.

who are your favorite shooters and why?

Alessandra Sanguinetti. I love her work and find her images to be intriguing as well as gorgeous to look at.

what has been the shining moment of your career thus far? (or, describe your “big break”)

I don’t know that I’ve had a big break thus far, but having my work chosen for the Photography Now 2010 show at the Center for Photography at Woodstock and the States of Flux show at Aperture Gallery have definitely been great moments.

who would you like to see interviewed by photopol.us next?

Surprise me!

what’s the soundtrack to your life and/or your favorite music to listen to while editing?

I love Bob and Sheri, a morning radio show broadcast based out of North Carolina. I download the podcasts and can listen to them for hours!

what’s your favorite hang (when shooting or not)?

Anywhere that has good coffee.

best chow to get you ready for a shoot? or best way to celebrate a brilliant capture?

I consider coffee to be a meal 🙂 And to celebrate, I don’t think you can go wrong with cake.

will you share with us one of your favorite shots?

One of my favorite shots is a photograph entitled “Donald” that I took in my grandfather’s living room in 2006. He passed away last winter, so the image has become especially poignant for me.

your favorite photo by another photographer?

I have two…”Frozen Foods, New York” by Irving Penn and “Mainbocher Corset” by Horst P. Horst.

has your passion for photography changed at all since turning “pro”?

No, I can’t say that it has. For now I just need to focus my passion on making time to continue shooting for myself.

do you have a favorite/lucky item of clothing, outfit or uniform that you like to wear when shooting an important assignment or project?

If I’m shooting for myself, I usually wear an old pair of jeans and a t-shirt. And I like to shoot barefoot for some reason…

what’s your sign? (we’re conducting a poll)

I’m a Leo 🙂



©RachelBeePorter

At photopolus, we’re always scouting for new talent. If you’re a photographer and would like to be featured as a future/potential Art Star on our blog, email us at info@photopolus.com or ange@angefitzgerald.com
*please put “Art Star” in the subject line and be sure to include a link to your website and examples of your work.

________

My memory is quite sketchy on this but I do have the magazine at work with all the info so I’ll expand it later when I do the whole set. I found these two negatives, some 8 months ago and have been waiting for my friend to get them scanned. I don’t recall what camera these were made with but probably a Pentax (6×9) or Hasselblad I borrowed. We didn’t have one in the paper’s pool but a couple staffers had their own. I can tell you this was shot very early in the morning on Plus-X b/w film. And it looks like it was hand-held based on the tilt in the second of the two consecutive frames. But the ss had to be 1/4 or so and that’s sharpness that just isn’t possible off a tripod. I know this was a regular part of the routine for these guys because I must’ve seen it and decided I needed a special way to get what I wanted here. I do know we ran this huge in the Sunday Magazine in The Morning Advocate.

Oh yeah, this was a boot camp for first-time offenders at one of the Louisiana penitentiaries. They weren’t hardened criminals. Yet. I went there numerous times from check-in day until graduation day. My best friend, Keith Lawrence, did the reporting. We teamed up on numerous stories together for the better part of 7 years at two papers together. He went over to the dark side and does PR for Duke University now.
1987

The following frame:

©1987 Guy Reynolds

By Andrew Acacio

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