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James Houston
James Houston

James Houston

Country: Australia

James Houston's background as a sculptor helped shape and influence his graphic photographic style. Australian born, Houston celebrates beauty and the human form, creating sensual iconic portraits and international campaigns for L'Oreal Paris, GAP, Donna Karan, Hugo Boss and Givenchy. New York based Houston balances his career with passion projects that make a difference in the community. Five award winning international books have been published on his work. Houston's book MOVE (PowerHouse Books), was created to benefit various HIV/AIDS charities and raised close to US$500,000 from sales and launch events. The book project, titled MOVE FOR AIDS was launched in 2006 with the support of Elton John, Hugh Jackman, Baz Luhrmann and Sarah Murdoch. While working on MOVE FOR AIDS, Houston was shocked to learn about American attitudes towards adolescent sexuality and the impact it has on U.S. teens. This discovery inspired Houston to raise over 1 million dollars to fund his first feature documentary titled, LET’S TALK ABOUT SEX (www.letstalkaboutsexthefilm.com). The Award winning film takes a revealing look at how American attitudes towards adolescent sexuality affect today’s teenagers. The film aired nationally on the TLC network in April, 2011 with the goal of helping parents and communities understand the importance of honest and open communication. For his latest photographic project, Natural Beauty, Houston turns his eye to nature for inspiration with the goal to raise awareness for the environment and funds for environmental non profit Global Green USA. In collaboration with MILK, Houston shot a series of striking portraits of some of the world’s leading models and celebrities. These captivating photographs, bring together two of Houston’s great passions – the human form and the natural world. Natural Beauty launched at MILK Gallery NYC April 2013. Houston also directed a web series on the 'making of' Natural Beauty as well as several film installations for the exhibition.

Source: www.houstonphoto.com

 

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More Great Photographers To Discover

Mo Verlaan
Netherlands
1963
"After graduating from the Rietvelt Art Academy in Amsterdam, I started out in experimental theatre, creating sets on location as well as performing. In 1993, I founded De Drie Gezusters with my sisters catering to (inter)national film crews on location from a converted truck. Eight years ago, my love for photography made me enter the Photo Academy. The book and series titled Resonance was part of my graduation in 2016. In these photographs my fascination with light and luminance finds its expression. The Memory of Time is a study about the plasticity of time and light, to see time and light as something elastic. For me there is a strong correlation between the impermanence of light and the fluidity of time." "In The Memory of Time I explore abstract spaces. What interests me most, are architectural structures where light can fleet in and out, creating a new space. To me light is both a tangible and evanescent medium, if not a language. By fading, molding and carving the light in my photographs, I transform reality and move into an imaginative and intuitive realm. The process involves composing layered images that nearly look like drawings, scraping off the innate realism that is part of photography, thus creating a more sensorial and subliminal world." Winner Single Image 9th Julia Margaret Cameron Award 2016, Category Architecture. Works from the series Resonance received several Honorable Mentions: Tokyo International Foto Awards 2016 (2x), The Monochrome Awards 2016 (4x), The Monovision Photography Awards 2017 (6x), IPA 2017 (2x), IPA 2018 One Shot Harmony (1x). The series Resonance was exhibited at The Indian Photography Festival 2016. The book Resonance was exhibited at: Scan Photobooks (Spain), The Griffin Museum (USA), RPSP (UK), Tripp Gallery (UK), Unveil'd (UK). Publication in the NEW2017, 100 Best Emerging Dutch Photographers of the year 2017.
Olivia Milani
Switzerland
1984
Artist and photographer Olivia Milani has been captivated by images and the power of visual language since she can remember. Olivia studied photography at Central Saint Martins in London, graduating with a Postgraduate degree in Photography. Through her curious, inquisitive and lyrical looking, she creates subtle, open narratives that usually develop into long term projects. Travel is an important source of inspiration for her work. As much as representing outer places or destinations, her dreamlike images conjure inner landscapes suggestive of internal states and the fluidity of emotions. Partly constructed, partly simply observed or gathered as they happen in the moment, her images are often situations encountered by chance which she then invests with symbolism, mythological and literary references. Her work has been exhibited internationally and she has enjoyed collaborations with many gifted artists. Growing up in the context of a multicultural background in the Italian speaking region of Switzerland, she lives and works in London, England and feels at home in the world. Olivia sees photography as a tool for outer and inner exploration and discovery. Approaching her work with serious playfulness, she likes to let its meaning unfold. Eastern Winds Eastern Winds is about a journey of tracing my roots and reconnecting the fragmented aspects of my family past. It all started when I opened an old suitcase filled with photographs and letters - the remnants of my grandmother Lydia's life in Russia. The photographs were mainly portraits from 19th and 20th century Russia. Their soulful and enigmatic quality captured me immediately and led me on a voyage, first inner and imaginary, and eventually outer - like following a river back to it's source, I decided to travel to Russia. Starting in Moscow, I crossed the country by land, from West to East, travelling along the Trans-Siberian railway route all the way to Siberia, that to me felt like the far northern edges of the world. As I was travelling through the immense vastness of the endless Russian plains, I was imagining the lives and destinies of my ancestors. A great stillness stretched around me and it felt as if the limitlessness of these landscapes was re-shaping my inner geography, linking me back to the continuum of my ancestral connections. My grandmother Lydia was born in Moscow to a Russian mother and Swiss father. All I know is that during the time of the political turmoil of the Russian Revolution her family got torn apart and she had to flee Russia over night. She was 20 and travelled to Switzerland on a cargo train with one sister. She never saw her family and homeland again. These images are a way of weaving back together the broken threads of my family history - a tapestry composed of lost and found family photographs, untold stories and memories half vanished through time. An act of remembrance and a way of reappropriating my family history and transnational heritage. Blending the pictures I took during the journey with the photographs of my ancestors is an attempt of linking past and present together, one family member to another, one generation to another. Reconnecting to the ancestors returns us to the river of life that flows from the past into the present moment to nourish us.
Zhang Jingna
China
1988
Zhang Jingna born May 4, 1988 in Beijing, China is a photographer known widely on DeviantART as zemotion.Born in the suburbs of Beijing to a sporting family, Jingna moved to Singapore at the age of eight, where she attended Haig Girls' School. At the age of fourteen, nine months after picking up air rifle, Jingna broke a national record, and subsequently joined the national air rifle team. She was active in the team for six years, notable achievements include breaking a record in the 10m Air Rifle event at the Commonwealth Shooting Championships 2005 in Melbourne, and a bronze in the same event at the Commonwealth Games in 2006, awarding her the title of Sports Girl of the Year for 2006 by the Singapore National Olympic Council. She left the Raffles Girls' School at sixteen to pursue a degree in fashion design in Lasalle College of the Arts. At eighteen, Jingna picked up a camera. Probably due to her keen interest and achievements in photography, she left Lasalle in October 2007, and the rifle team in January 2008, to pursue photography full time. Jingna's clientele includes companies such as Mercedes Benz, Canon, Pond's, Ogilvy & Mather Advertising and Wacom. She also produced fashion editorials for magazines such as Harper's Bazaar, Elle and Flare. In September 2008, Jingna held her first solo exhibition, "Something Beautiful", at The Arts House in Singapore. In April 2010, 50 of her works were showcased along Orchard Road during Singapore's fashion festival - Fashion Seasons @ Orchard. The showcase was Singapore’s first large scale street exhibition featuring fashion photography. The street exhibition was followed immediately by her second gallery show, "Angel Dreams", at Japan Creative Centre, Singapore, supported by the Embassy of Japan. The show was noted for her photographs of Japanese musician Sugizo (Luna Sea, X Japan). She's influenced by people such as Peter Lindbergh, John William Waterhouse, Yoshitaka Amano and Zdzislaw Beksinski. Jingna also cites her friend Kuang Hong, a fellow artist whom she had managed since the age of fifteen, in numerous interviews, as one of the influences and foundations of her artistic development. She manages a professional Starcraft 2 team called Infinity Seven. Source: Wikipedia Jingna Zhang is a Forbes Asia 30 Under 30 Honoree. She is a fashion and fine art photographer and director living in New York City and Tokyo. A former world-class air rifle shooter on Singapore's national team, Jingna picked up photography at 18 and soon developed a keen eye for painterly and romantic imageries. By 20, Jingna had worked with Mercedes Benz and Ogilvy & Mather, Harper’s Bazaar Singapore, and held her first solo exhibition at Singapore’s Arts House and published her first photobook. In the years since, Jingna's works have appeared on multiple editions of VOGUE, ELLE, and Harper's BAZAAR. Her fine art works have exhibited in New York, Hong Kong, Lisbon, and Singapore. Jingna was named on Forbes 30 Under 30 Asia list 2018, Photographer of the Year at ELLE Awards Singapore 2011, and a recipient of the 7th Julia Margaret Cameron Award for Women Photographers. She is an alumna of Stanford Ignite, and the founder of a competitive StarCraft II team. In her free time, Jingna enjoys Gundam, cooking, and Hacker News. Jingna's current projects include an Asian-themed fantasy series, a course on artistic portrait photography, and the Motherland Chronicles artbook. Source: www.zhangjingna.com
Frieke Janssens
Belgium
1980
Frieke janssens was born in bruges, belgium, in 1980. after starting with evening classes in photography at an age of 15, she skipped the pilot or police on a horse option. photography was her future. while studying photography at sint-lukas brussels she was mainly interested in lifestyle, sociology and stereotypes, because she felt like she was living in two worlds. now she's a brussels-based photographer. After graduating in 2002, frieke immediately started working as a photographer, where she tries to tell a story that’s fascinating and mostly avoids the clichés, or use them very consciously. she's inspired by different things from paintings, comics or even a real estate website, and works with an eye for detail, humour and surrealism. her pictures are how she imagines subjects in her head. It is often shown in the details: the clothes, the furniture and so on. a picture has succeeded, when you can look at it for a while. it can not only just be beautiful neither only interesting. it needs both. This has brought her not only gold, silver and bronze medals in creative competitions, but also commissions from successful agencies that include ddb, duval guillaume, famous, leo burnett, tbwa, saatchi & saatchi, ogilvy & mather, mortierbrigade for customers like brussels airlines, ing, mtv networks, volkswagen, red cross, senseo, signal and many more.AWARDS: 2008 shortlist cannes, 2007 gold & bronze new york festival, 2006 silver & bronze eurobest, 2005 gold new york festival, 2005 shortlist cannes Source: www.bransch.net
Man Ray
United States
1890 | † 1976
Born in Philadelphia, Emmanuel Radnitsky grew up in New Jersey and became a commercial artist in New York in the 1910s. He began to sign his name Man Ray in 1912, although his family did not change its surname to Ray until the 1920s. He initially taught himself photography in order to reproduce his own works of art, which included paintings and mixed media. In 1921 he moved to Paris and set up a photography studio to support himself. There he began to make photograms, which he called "Rayographs." In the 1920s, he also began making moving pictures. Man Ray's four completed films--Return to Reason, Emak Bakia, Starfish, and Mystery of the Chateau--were all highly creative, non-narrative explorations of the possibilities of the medium. Shortly before World War II, Man Ray returned to the United States and settled in Los Angeles from 1940 until 1951. He was disappointed that he was recognized only for his photography in America and not for the filmmaking, painting, sculpture, and other media in which he worked. In 1951 Man Ray returned to Paris. He concentrated primarily on painting until his death in 1976. Man Ray (born Emmanuel Radnitzky, August 27, 1890 – November 18, 1976) was an American modernist artist who spent most of his career in Paris, France. He was a significant contributor to the Dada and Surrealist movements, although his ties to each were informal. He produced major works in a variety of media but considered himself a painter above all. He was best known in the art world for his avant-garde photography, and he was a renowned fashion and portrait photographer. Ray is also noted for his work with photograms, which he called "rayographs" in reference to himself. Source: Wikipedia “I have finally freed myself from the sticky medium of paint, and am working directly with light itself.” So enthused Man Ray in 1922, shortly after his first experiments with camera-less photography. He remains well known for these images, commonly called photograms but which he dubbed "rayographs" in a punning combination of his own name and the word “photograph.” Man Ray’s artistic beginnings came some years earlier, in the Dada movement. Shaped by the trauma of World War I and the emergence of a modern media culture—epitomized by advancements in communication technologies like radio and cinema—Dada artists shared a profound disillusionment with traditional modes of art making and often turned instead to experimentations with chance and spontaneity. In The Rope Dancer Accompanies Herself with Her Shadows, Man Ray based the large, color-block composition on the random arrangement of scraps of colored paper scattered on the floor. The painting evinces a number of interests that the artist would carry into his photographic work: negative space and shadows; the partial surrender of compositional decisions to accident; and, in its precise, hard-edged application of unmodulated color, the removal of traces of the artist’s hand. In 1922, six months after he arrived in Paris from New York, Man Ray made his first rayographs. To make them, he placed objects, materials, and sometimes parts of his own or a model's body onto a sheet of photosensitized paper and exposed them to light, creating negative images. This process was not new—camera-less photographic images had been produced since the 1830s—and his experimentation with it roughly coincided with similar trials by Lázló Moholy-Nagy. But in his photograms, Man Ray embraced the possibilities for irrational combinations and chance arrangements of objects, emphasizing the abstraction of images made in this way. He published a selection of these rayographs—including one centered around a comb, another containing a spiral of cut paper, and a third with an architect’s French curve template on its side—in a portfolio titled Champs délicieux in December 1922, with an introduction written by the Dada leader Tristan Tzara. In 1923, with his film Le Retour à la raison (Return to Reason), he extended the rayograph technique to moving images. Around the same time, Man Ray’s experiments with photography carried him to the center of the emergent Surrealist movement in Paris. Led by André Breton, Surrealism sought to reveal the uncanny coursing beneath familiar appearances in daily life. Man Ray proved well suited to this in works like Anatomies, in which, through framing and angled light, he transformed a woman’s neck into an unfamiliar, phallic form. He contributed photographs to the three major Surrealist journals throughout the 1920s and 1930s, and also constructed Surrealist objects like Gift, in which he altered a domestic tool (an iron) into an instrument of potential violence, and Indestructible Object (or Object to Be Destroyed), a metronome with a photograph of an eye affixed to its swinging arm, which was destroyed and remade several times. Source: The Museum of Modern Art
Diane Fenster
United States
1948
I view myself as an alchemist, using alternative process, toy camera and digital tools to delve into fundamental human conditions and issues. My work is literary and emotional, full of symbolism and multiple layers of meaning with a style that marries photography with evocative and fragmented imagery. I am currently exploring several antiquarian processes including lumen printing and photo-encaustic. My work (exhibited since 1990) first received notice during the era of early experimentations with digital imaging and has appeared in numerous publications. I have been a guest lecturer at many and various seminars and conferences. My work has been internationally exhibited and is part of museum, corporate and private collections. A Long History Of Dark Sleep: Anxiety and insomnia self-portraits during the pandemic of COVID-19 In this time of Covid-19, I sleep alone but fear is my lover. We embrace fretfully and stare at the ceiling. At this late hour, there is no one to call, all the lines are dead and the buses have stopped running. This is my chance to record anxiety, to photograph the noir that surrounds me and find some truth and perhaps beauty in the dead of night. The camera comes to bed with me and a flashlight is my light-source. I have never liked being photographed. A series based on self-portraits could not have happened until this moment in time. Coming face to face with potential death carried on the breeze by an invisible agent has the power to propel me to self-examination in spite of distress. My aim is fretful, the focus unsteady. It's all about chance, isn't it, what the lens captures, who gets the virus.
Sol Hill
United States
1971
Sol Hill was born in Albuquerque, NM in 1971, to artist parents who founded the first contemporary art gallery in Santa Fe. His early memories were of being with his parents in their respective studios and of being in their gallery in Santa Fe. As a child the mysterious objects and paintings that pervaded the gallery intrigued him. Contemporary art works were prevalent both in the gallery and at home. Looking at those artworks felt like observing some secret alchemical language that Hill wished to learn. Growing up, Hill lived all across the United States, and in Jamaica and Germany. He majored in International Affairs and German at Lewis & Clark College in Portland, OR and at Maximilian Ludwig Universität in Munich, Germany. He also studied printmaking in college and then became deeply involved with photography while in Germany. He later returned to Santa Fe and founded Zen Stone Furnishings with his wife, a paper artist from Brazil. Together they designed and manufactured hand crafted home furnishings from stone, twigs, copper and handmade paper. After an intense medical crisis, Hill decided to dedicate himself to fine art. He went on to study photography at the Brooks Institute in Santa Barbara, where he received an MFA in 2010. Hill travels regularly and often to Brazil to visit his wife’s family. Travel has powerfully affected his vision as an artist. Although Hill uses some of the latest digital photographic equipment and embraces digital photography, he finds that he is drawn to the kind of liberation found in embracing the mysterious and unfamiliar rather than that which is crisply defined and well known.About Token Feminine:The mannequin is a token feminine used to impart cultural conventions of the idealized female image In this body of work I examine mannequins in storefront windows as symbols of consumer culture. I see them as emblems upon which the desire and fantasy of sex and fashion are draped and from which complex valuations of body image are ingested. The mannequin is a token feminine presence used to impart cultural conventions of the idealized female image. I dissipate these literal mannequin pictures by interrupting the expected information and accepting the digital noise, which are undesirable artifacts produced by false exposure, inherent to the process of capturing digital images. This allows me to explore the nature of the boundary between the reverie of the token feminine and the reality of the commercial icon.About Urban Noise:I seek stillness within the modern day information overload through the act of unconventional street photography. Urban Noise combines an exploration of the aesthetic and conceptual value of digital noise in photography with a contemplative study of the contemporary urban environment. Digital noise is a reviled artifact inherent to digital imaging. I challenge the notion that this artifact is inherently worthless by using it to render photographs into contemporary visual tropes. It is my tool to address the digital nature of the contemporary world. Digital noise is false exposure produced by energies other than light, namely heat, electrical current and “cosmic noise.” Cosmic noise is the term for invisible wavelength energies comprised in part of man-made signals from our built and technological environment mixed with the electro magnetic energy produced by human bodies. The resulting noise from these interfering energies transforms my photographs. The contemporary urban environment is flooded with so much extraneous information that we necessarily turn most of it into background noise to survive. There is so much conflicting information competing for our attention that I am intrigued by how we sort out what is worthy of our attention, from meaningless background noise. I seek my own stillness within the overwhelming cacophony of modern day information overload through the act of unconventional street photography.
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