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Entries in photography (16)


PHOTOGRAPHY: Jordan Matter's 'Dancers Among Us' Book Earns Applause

Last fall, stated’s Thomas V. Hartmann interviewed photographer Jordan Matter and got an inside look into his “Dancers Among Us” project, both in words and pictures. As you’ll see in the video above, the project captures professional dancers in extraordinary moments in otherwise ordinary situations.

Three years in the making, Workman Press has just released Dancers Among Us: A Celebration of Joy in the Everyday, a print compilation of Matter’s photos. As Matter shares on his his blog, it’s been getting quite a warm reception, reaching #1 on Reddit, #1 in “Individual Artists” (and #54 overall) on, and picking up coverage from ABC World News, CBS’ The Insider, and others.

Congratulations to Jordan on his success with Dancers Among Us. Be sure to check out our full interview and photoshoot on stated and purchase the book at Amazon and other booksellers.

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Artist Hazel Dooney: 'Discomfort the Viewer, Not Turn Them On' 

interviewed artist Hazel Dooney almost two years ago during a period in her life she describes in a post on her blog:

This is my story of the past three years: I went mad. I went bankrupt. My father died from a particularly aggressive cancer. I went mad again, and not just from grief. I stopped painting. I fell ill. I recovered. I started painting again.

Since we spoke with her she has revealed the story of her youth in a difficult-to-read blog post, admitted herself to a psychiatric hospital for a month of treatment, and regained her health. And despite her struggles, she is one of the top 50 traded artists by value in the Australian and New Zealand markets. What is most notable is that she left the gallery system seven years ago, works hard to market her own work, sacrificed a key tool in marketing her own work by leaving Facebook on principle, and yet remains very much in the public eye.

Check out her TED Talk (below), but perhaps more interesting is this video interview with Australian newspaper, The Age.



ART: Brandalism: Reclaiming the UK Visual Landscape

(Artist - Bill Posters (UK) // Site specific install, Primary School, Manchester. Image via

“Any advertisement in public space that gives you no choice whether you see it or not is yours. It belongs to you. It’s yours to take, rearrange and re-use. Asking for permission is like asking to keep a rock someone just threw at your head.” 

- Paraphrase by Banksy of graphic designer/writer Sean Tejaratchi in Crap Hound no. 6, July 1999. 

This well-known quote neatly sums up the philosophy behind The Brandalism Project, a group of UK artists who have launched what they are calling, “the world’s first international, collaborative subvertising project.”

“We are tired of being shouted at by adverts on every street corner,” Brandalism state on their website, “so we decided to get together with some friends from around the world and start to take them back, one billboard at a time.” 

In the run up to the London Olympics, 25 Brandalism artists assailed over 30 billboards and other advertisements in Manchester, Birmingham, Leeds, Bristol, and London and used them as canvases to create original art. Some Brandalists modify the text or visual elements of a billboard in order to turn its commercial message on its ear, as in “Health Warning” (Levenshulme, Manchester) by artist Shift//Delete; others simply paper over the advertisements or install their work on blank billboards.

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PHOTOGRAPHY: Nurnberg's Old-School Guide to Lighting Portraits


If you’re looking for a book on portrait lighting there are plenty to chose from. But before you load up your Amazon shopping cart with recent releases you may want to consider an oldie-but-goodie: Walter Nurnberg’s Lighting for Portraiture.

First published in 1948, Lighting for Portraiture won’t show you how to master the latest studio gear or perform miracles with your speedlights, but it will give you a solid understanding of basic portrait lighting concepts along with a slew of recipes that are as applicable today as they were back when spot, flood or bare bulb, were the photographer’s only options.

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DESIGN: Inspiration for the Logo-less

(C) 2010 Thomas V Hartmann (Click to view full-size)

I’m wandering off of my patch a bit, I know, but logo design has been on my mind lately. Hardly a day goes by, it seems, when I don’t find myself coveting the clever abstraction on someone’s business card or filled with envy over the cool symbol or mascot they use as their Twitter avatar.

When I made my debut in the Twitterverse, I struggled over what I could use to replace that newbie’s egg. I didn’t have a logo (my business cards were the templated variety from MOO, and I wasn’t crazy about using a photo of myself as my avatar (alas, like many other photographers I am camera-shy). I could have cooked up a simple type treatment of my initials, but I didn’t want people to mistake me for the element Thorium, and another photographer, Tomas Van Houtryve of VII (@TomasVH), was already using a simple, dignified “TVH”.

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