It was family, not photography, that led Jamie Kripke to board a riverboat in Basel, Switzerland, for a week-long cruise down the Rhine, but once the plans were made, he knew he wanted to take photographic advantage of the unique opportunity.
Lions, tigers, and bears — in the studio? That’s just another day behind the camera for Austin photographer Randal Ford and the subject of his first book, The Animal Kingdom: A Collection of Portraits (Rizzoli).
Alonzo King LINES Ballet is celebrating its 35th anniversary this year with a special exhibition of photography by RJ Muna at San Francisco International Airport.
Ohio roots, a love of bicycles and a fear of flying lead Jamie Kripke on a photographic journey.
Margaret Lampert’s recent personal project is inspired by her childhood on a dairy farm just north of Boston. This past year, she started exploring her dairy farm roots, traveling to several farms in Vermont and upstate New York.
Jamie Kripke’s latest personal project came about somewhat by happenstance: he was doing some photography research for a friend when he discovered the unique story of the Chicago Park District’s fieldhouses.
Renowned food and still life photographer Annabelle Breakey has a passion for perfume. Her most recent personal project takes three of her favorite fragrances and presents them against elaborate and whimsical backdrops inspired by the fragrances themselves.
Inspired by the “profound truth” that “the artist’s best career move is death,” Jamie Kripke decided to stage his own funeral.
It’s not surprising to find Shaun Fenn hanging around down by the water, but his latest personal project, Crew, shot at the Newport Aquatic Center, hits particularly close to home.
Shaun Fenn likes to keep a running list of personal projects to work on when the chance arises. Inspired by the images one might have from childhood of the lumber industry, Shaun traveled to the dense forests of northern Maine and along the California-Oregon border for his latest project titled simply, Lumber.
“In my free time, I like to try and tackle subjects that I’m personally curious about. In this particular story, I loved the juxtaposition of the gritty, industrial subject approached with a refined aesthetic,” Shaun says.
Shaun began the project inspired by classic images of lumberjacks settling the West, clearing old growth redwoods with saws and axes, but when he got into the project he discovered that as technology has changed a lot of industries, the lumber industry is no exception.
“Instead of all those people going out and cutting these trees down, there’s a single person in a single operator that processes trees like a cook processes onions, just flies through these trees like you can’t believe. Picks them up like toothpicks and strips them in one stroke. One guy in a truck all night long, 24 hours per day,” says Shaun.
In addition, the vocation has run into the global effort to preserve some of the more valuable “old growth” trees. The mills are being retrofitted to process smaller lumber because the larger trees are rare and thus protected.
“Our incredible forests are a treasure, but also a necessary resource which is a foundation for economic growth. The new lumber industry has a very production-centric process confined by a great deal of government regulation.” Shaun says.
The images, in color and black and white, show the gritty side of the job—trucks slogging through the mud, machines processing wood, the breath of a single operator hanging in the night sky lit by a spotlight—as well as intimate portraits of the few men left who run the show and a close-up of a freshly cut tree stump, the rings telling the story of the tree’s brief life.
“Like an editorial approach, I shot what was there in front of me and enjoyed the process. The incredible smell of a freshly cut tree is timeless and enduring. And I found the amount of dedication and pride amongst the men and women who provide the lumber that we use throughout our daily lives, similarly inspirational.” reflects Shaun.
He says a secondary goal of the project was to show that you don’t need to go to some exotic place to make beautiful and interesting photographs. “This is right here in the U.S. It’s not in Ukraine or China. I set out to create inspiring images around vocations and emotions right here at home. The personal challenge of creating interesting imagery around the “everyday” is super healthy for me.”
The project was shot in 2015. Early in 2016 he sent out a large mailer with a couple dozen images that best showcase the beauty he found in the lumber project.
“Personal projects help me to grow. They allow me to get into a subject intimately and tell a story. A very good exercise for the soul.” says Shaun.
For the next week, I’m doing an Instagram takeover featuring samples of my waitress project. Go to the New Republic Magazine’s page to see the series.
I asked Jamie Kripke to share some thoughts on his photo essay “Building Ello,” a behind the scenes look at the creative minds at Mode Set.
After four years of dreaming of the desert, Matthew Turley bought a ticket and headed to the airport.
“Wyoming Color” is a recent series of personal work shot by Jamie Kripke while driving (7 + hours) to and from an assignment for Field & Stream in Sheridan, Wyoming.
One of the greatest perks of my job is that my wall of “family photos” looks something like an art gallery. Having such majorly talented photographers shoot my children over the years has been such a priceless gift.
Matthew Turley recently spent over two months in Europe shooting stock and personal work.