I started loving photography in the 7th grade with an unremarkable pinhole camera made from an oatmeal container - a simple concept whereby you expose a piece of film to a point of light (no lens). My parents provided the quantum leap at age 13 with a Canon Canonet. The years, cameras and shutter clicks passed along.
By age 50 the love evolved to collecting cameras. My collection was in the 100s when the beauty of the different eras of camera design came into focus. My initial interest was merely cataloging my collection. I started playing with the images, grouping cameras by type, style, color. I manipulated the photos to create something new. The idea of taking groups and creating mosaics (using similar cameras as tiles) was my next adventure into creating form and collage. I decided to find large lots of old digital cameras and recycled these into my mosaics.
I bought groups or bid on “lots” of cameras. My collection grew. Sometimes these lots included lens filters, boxes, film. Rather than dump these extra goodies I expanded my collages to these new materials. More collage work continued with using old window frames with lens filters to create stained glass collections as well as recycled film canisters and Kodak box sets.
Collections also included photographs, so I expanded my auction skills to buy vintage photographs. Over the course of 6 months I created a 6’x9’ photo collage of a Kodak Duoflex 1950s TLR camera that incorporated approximately 800 photographs from the early 1900s to 1950s. I completed the JFK 6’x 6’ photo mosaic in 2016.
But the cameras themselves held a special allure and challenge. I decided to create by hand what my eye had seen in my camera photographs. I began to experiment to create what I call boards or canvases that could support the weight of the cameras. Using any media I could find; wood, paper, paint, pigments, resins, my techniques improved. The use of the cameras themselves became a functional part of the works with the insertion of old slides or transparencies that invite the viewer to look into the lens and imagine a memory of a photo taken long ago by that camera.
My work has evolved to expressionistic pieces in mixed media employing a technique of building layers and then breaking them down to reveal the patterns interlaced beneath. It is like constructing in 3d and then reverse engineering the final work.