12th and Final Lunar Landscape by Catherine Slye

12/22/18 Dreamy Draw Recreation Area, PHX, AZ

12/22/18 Dreamy Draw Recreation Area, PHX, AZ

December 22, 2018 marked the final full moon of 2018, and the 12th and final Lunar Landscape session. I started 12/3/17 at Dreamy Draw, on a whim, to catch the full moon rise and from there the concept of the Lunar Landscapes series arose. I wanted to focus on capturing the moon just as it crested the desert landscape and the landscape by full moonlight. After 12 outings, I confirmed this about myself, while I like parameters - self-imposed outlines of what a series is and what a series isn’t, I’m not a fan of a timed deadline. Lunar Landscapes can only happen within seconds on a particular date about once a month, there’s one chance and if I miss it, wait another 30 days. Such an odd sensation of imbalance for me. Once I’m in the desert I felt I was exactly where I needed to be, but the rush to get there, then the lag of time waiting for the next one made me feel lopsided and wishing for the end. And now it’s here. I expect I’ll go back to these spots with a modified set of parameters.

Dates and locations: 12/03/17 Dreamy Draw Recreation Area, 01/01/18 Papago Park, 01/31/18 Carefree Ranch, 03/02/18 South Mountain, 04/29/18 Picket Post Mountain, 05/29/18 South Mountain, 06/27/18 Sonoran Park Preserve, 07/27/18 Phoenix Mountain Preserve, 08/26/18 North Mountain, 10/24/18 South Mountain, 11/22/18 Lost Dutchman State Park and 12/22/18 Dreamy Draw Recreation Area. In dated order below:

I'd like to thank the folks that joined me on my LL adventures, you know who you are :) Your enthusiasm, support and participation in this project is much appreciated. <3

Moving onward, 2019 has so much in store, I cannot wait for new projects to begin! Happy New Year!

All images (c) Catherine Slye, 2018.

Los Angeles Center of Photography : Creative Portrait Show by Catherine Slye

The Los Angeles Center of Photography (LACP) opened The Creative Portrait exhibit Saturday, December 15th. Scenes 1 and 2 from my conceptual series, “Designated Driver and The Five Illusions” are in the show, Scene 1 hangs in the main gallery and Scene 2 in the online gallery.

The Illusion of Longing : Scene 1

The Illusion of Longing : Scene 1

The Illusion of Longing : Scene 2

The Illusion of Longing : Scene 2

What an awesome show! Super packed!

And even more awesome was the super humbling moment I had when I tried to interact with a couple who were clearly discussing my photo. It was a couple - man and a woman, they were pointing at my photo and talking to each other, I was about a foot behind them, but it was so loud, I couldn’t hear what they were saying. So, I politely intruded, “Excuse me”, I said. “That’s my photograph, did you have questions? I’d be happy to talk with you about it.” The woman turned and smiled slightly, she said, “Well, we were just saying that we couldn’t see it because it’s so dark!” I almost bust out laughing!

Ha! There went my fantasy of having a conversation about My Art! Oh, the vanity!

“That’s a true statement.” I said. “It is very dark.” I smiled.

I asked her, “Do you want to know what it’s about?” She said, “Sure, well, I can see the car…” I took this as her Yes. I said, “It’s about the progression of the relationship between a man and a woman through five stages or as I call them; The Illusions; Longing, Violence, Safety, Love and Freedom.”

"Ohhh….” she said nodding. She asked me where it was taken.

To me, this is the least interesting component, the work isn’t about the location or the landscape. I explained I lived in Phoenix, AZ and most of the images in the series were made at South Mountain Park, but so what? I feel this information is irrelevant. But, I get it.

I know that lots of people won’t or can’t find my work compelling or understandable. And I also know that I ambushed her into this conversation. And I totally understand that many people want/need something concrete to hang on to when they look at any art, they want it to make sense in the way that their world makes sense. She was trying to make sense of my work in the only way she knows how, I didn’t fault her for that.

After she walked away, I did laugh - at my own hubris. My desire to connect with people over my art is how I want to communicate with the world, I also get it that this doesn’t make sense to everyone. I felt inspired by the show, seeing other photographers pursue their unique visions and executing it through photography, just like I am.

Framed size 24” x 15”, $750, please inquire.

Los Angeles Center of Photography Creative Portrait Exhibit December 15, 2018 - February 1, 2019 Gallery images here. And Virtual Gallery here.

Making the Nightlight Diorama by Catherine Slye

One of the biggest challenges of the Nightlight series was making the diorama. I wanted to create an experience for viewers of this series that emphasized the voyeuristic aspects of this series - the act of peering through a peephole to see a hidden space. And the making of it! So much fun. Each piece was prototyped and sketched and made, then remade to get it exactly how I felt it should be.

I started in June and completed it in November. I took hundreds of time lapse photos while I was working on it, kept a notebook of my drawings, ideas and plans and talked to many people about electricity, wiring, dollhouses, model making and acrylic box construction.

It is a 1:12 scale model of image #6894, the first Nightlight photo when I knew I was on the right track, it’s also the only image that was made in my own home, it feels incredibly personal to me.

The series started in January and completed in October, I stayed at 40 places and took more than 1400 images, from which I selected the final series images, view the series here.

Memory 2x by Catherine Slye

It's fascinating to see where the creative path leads - I started with a grand idea of capturing raw emotion triggered by specific words on cards. I had this vision of juxtaposing two people together, seated and facing me, I would give each a different card, some with the same word on it, some with differing words. And attempt to capture their emotional reaction to the word. 

But this is what this series turned into. Conversations with friends, some whom I haven't seen in years. Conversations about our past or shared memories or simply whatever they wanted to talk about. Twelve friends who were graciously willing to be photographed, many I know felt anxious and awkward - on the spot and unsure what I was looking for. Really, all I wanted, was exactly what I got. I wanted them to simply be themselves, as they are, as I know them to be. That person they are with me. It was truly a delightful project.

I remembered to capture a BTS shot with my iPhone 10 out of 12 times. What a bummer that I don't have all 12  *sigh*. BTS shots below, and the entire series is up on the site, I selected three images each per person, I was trying to show a range of emotion/expression. Memory 2x

For months I've been anticipating printing this work and showing it locally in a 3-person group show. But through no fault of my own, the show has been canceled. At this time I do not have plans to show it, it will live here on my site until further notice.

Moving onward to other projects, thank you to everyone who participated and all the auxiliary folks who supported this project in all ways. <3 Much love. Thank you.

Equipment; Sony a9 + Minolta Celtic MD 28mm + Raqual adapter, USB C to 2.0 Micro B 5 Pin cable connecting to Asus laptop running Capture One for Sony. 

If you have questions about this project or my equipment, please feel to contact me and ask. 

Joyland Toyland by Catherine Slye

I love small things, even better if they are vintage small things. Plus vibrant color and the tiniest of details. This series is all those things - I can't tell you how much fun it is - the treasure hunting to find just the right toy, the shoots with tiny Lume Cube lights and Roscolux filters in my tiny photo studio. Tiny! 

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Most of my other series' are serious, perhaps even a little somber. I wanted to work on something bright and fun, and joyful. And make those images be available for purchase quickly and inexpensively. 

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I selected BayPhoto as my on demand printer, they offer "Dream Prints" in Deep Matte - by far the best inkjet print I've seen and touched. After two rounds of test prints, I feel I have it dialed in and am now waiting on final sized prints to arrive this week.

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I'm starting with 8" x 10" prints, five different images of the dog and two of the elephant, I'll have them up for sale on my site soon, around $50 and up, depending on chosen shipping method and image size - 12" x 12" and 12" x 18" will be available too. More toys coming as soon as I can find them! Whee!

How I Got The Shot Guide: Women's Edition by Catherine Slye

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I’m thrilled to be included in the How I Got the Shot: Women’s Edition! This guide features 30 incredible female photographers and yours truly with a behind-the-scenes look at how I got the shot. Download now for FREE at www.TetherTools.com/Guide#InternationalWomensDay

Featured is my Lunar Landscapes series, from 01.31.18 at Carefree Ranch - North Scottsdale at the property of Martha and David Bills, you can see more of their beautiful residence - a Will Bruder designed home, at https://byrneresidence.com/. Lunar Landscapes continues, each month - it's a deceptively simple series - it's proven to be more complicated than I had anticipated, which is awesome, right?! I always did need to learn the hard way. ;)