William Ris Gallery in Jamesport will host “Imagined/Actual,” photographs by Scott Farrell and Mike McLaughlin through March 18. The opening reception will be held Saturday from 4 to 7 PM, and an artist talk on March 3. Prior to the opening, Indy spoke with the two featured artists.
Farrell resides in Huntington Station and creates his photographs with a full-frame DSLR, Canon 5D Mark III.
What is a color, or theme, that guests can expect to see most of in this exhibit?
SF: My “Dry Documentaries” body of work is comprised of two series—the “Alternate Landscapes” (containing abstract representations of landscapes and seascapes) and “An Abstract Vessel” (containing more abstract, interpretive pieces). The color schemes vary, primarily exhibiting muted tones of blues, greens, and earth tones found in my “landscapes and seascapes” before gravitating towards more vibrant colors encountered in the more abstract works.
Where are most of the photographs taken? Why that location?
SF: All of my work in “Imagined/Actual” comes from multiple locations along the North and South shores of Long Island, from Glen Cove to Greenport. I’ve pretty much scoured a great deal of the island over several years to uncover these unique and “temporary” images.
What’s an East End location that inspires you?
SF: I’d probably have to say Greenport for the North Fork, and Montauk for the South Fork. The maritime history of Greenport is fascinating and the natural beauty of Montauk is hard to beat.
How do you approach taking a picture?
SF: I would have to say texture, light, composition, and “vision” are the primary drivers. I am a huge admirer of painters Andrew Wyeth, Winslow Homer, and J.M.W. Turner, as well as photographers Ansel Adams, Dorothea Lange, and Walker Evans. Considering how any one, or even a combination, of these artists might interpret a particular scene is always part of my conscious approach for capturing an image.
Is your work best seen in the small details or larger picture?
SF: The majority of my photography relies on detail. Of course, the details make up the larger picture, but more often than not, I want the viewer to look closely at the work. Oftentimes I receive suggestions to do prints on metal or to try frameless, acrylic pieces. I know these substrates are popular and, oftentimes, are very eye-catching, but I far prefer traditionally matted, framed prints that are printed on archival fine art papers. Most of my subjects have incredible texture that simply cannot be rendered as effectively on high gloss, reflective media. I truly feel the right paper, sometimes as much as the composition, makes the photograph.
McLaughin resides on the North Fork. He primarily uses a Nikon Df but is experimenting with Sony Alpha full-frame mirrorless camera.
What excites you most about this exhibit?
MM: Given that most people are more familiar with my North Fork landscapes, I’m particularly interested in the reaction to and feedback on my architectural work. I’m also excited to see the juxtaposition of my “actual” to Scott’s “imagined.”
Why North Fork over the South Fork?
MM: I love the South Fork, and go there often, both to take pictures and to exhibit my work. The ocean beaches and dunes in the Hamptons and Montauk are among the most beautiful I’ve seen.
How do your architectural and urban pieces tie in with one another?
MM: The unifying theme for all of my work—from seascapes and farmscapes, to urban vistas and architectural portraits—is a simple, clean, and uncluttered style.
Who are some photographers that have influenced your own work?
MM: I’m inspired by the photography of Andreas Gursky and Gregory Crewdson, but I think the bigger influences on my work come from the principles of modern architecture and the likes of Mies van der Rohe.
Name something viewers should keep an eye out for.
MM: Perspective. For me, it’s all about perspective.
William Ris Gallery is located at 1291 Main Road in Jamesport. Visit www.williamris.com or call 609-408-5203 for more information. Scott Farrell can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or via his website www.scottfarrellphotograph.com. Farrell also offers a professional printing service for local photographers. Mike McLaughlin’s work can be seen at www.MikeMcLaughinPhoto.com.
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