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Los Angeles Photographer Lee Chapman "Now and Then: Artist From The Past In The Future"
Support artist's Kickstarter project and bring previously unseen photographic work from 1976 to 1980 to the web and get one of a limited edition collector's print for your support.
By: Lee Chapman
We asked Lee to tell us about his background and what he hopes to gain by using Kickstarter for this latest project. "I have always been fascinated in light, perception, and memory since childhood." He tells us he grew up surrounded by professional photographers in his family, "I always was interested in their cameras and as a kid I was amazed how that "box" could capture and create the image that I saw on the paper." Of course, it would be years until I could understand that concept of light frequencies, optics, and the entire process of photography.
Of course, the mechanics of photography are themselves fascinating but it was not until he experienced his first camera that he understood the most important element of all - creativity!
"Once I saw that what I saw through the viewfinder would translate onto the print it opened up a new world for me. It is one thing looking with the eyes and seeing everything but it is quite another thing to be able to isolate elements or segments of what you see. To capture your own unique visual experience of a place and time. I not only wanted to capture an image of what I was seeing BUT also what I was feeling while I was experiencing the visual through the lens of my camera."
He continues, "When I was with a camera it became an extension of me...it would become my eyes and ultimately my memory. Growing up I remember finding boxes of old photographs that were long forgotten in boxes in an old barn my grandfather owned. They were tintype photos and showed images of a time long past. I was fascinated and a little sad that no one could enjoy these images...that they were memories of people long gone and only existed on these sheets of metal. There were no negatives. These were the original and only image."
Without knowing it, these boxes of old photographs would have a life long lasting effect on him. I think that somehow I wanted to pay tribute to all those forgotten and lost images I had seen in that box in that old barn."
This collection is a series he calls "Now and Then: Artist from the past in the future." What you experience viewing these images is the vision captured through the eyes of the artist at the ages of 18 to 22 and put away...then revisited 35 years later by the artist now at age 55. The images are unique and offer a creative window not only into the artist's mind but into a time long gone.
These images are were all created in 1978 to 1982. Just a 4 year window...not only do they capture a specific period in time but also the creative expression of the artist at a specific age. He created all of these images between the ages of 18 to 22. "That is a very significant period in a young man's life...the transition from childhood to manhood."
He has and had a great appreciation for nature and the harmony and beauty of the natural world. "Very often my subject matter was found during the time I spent in the woods on summer days in the mid-west." "I enjoyed transforming a scene through my lenses and isolating the elements to capture not only an image but a specific yet intangible feeling."
"I am not altering, cropping, or otherwise manipulating these images in anyway. All of the composition was done in the camera by me, prior to pushing the shutter button." These images are a testament to the creative mind of a young artist and his vision.
All work was created by the artist and is now being digitally captured and printed by the artist just as he envisioned it all those years ago but did not have the technology to bring to life - until now! "It's very much like discovering that box of old tintype photos only now it is my work and they are not going to simply be forgotten. I am transforming them into artworks that others can own and enjoy."
Using a state-of-the-
It should be noted that the images are NOT cropped or changed from the image that he captured on the original source media. They are reproduced exactly as he created them and intended them to appear all those years ago using today's technology! "I don't know why I never worked with these series of photographs but now I know why I kept them. I didn't want them to end up forgotten like those tintype photos I found in my grandfather's shed. Moments frozen in time and forgotten. No, I wanted something more."
Lee tells us, "The merging of the old and new, of then and now...of the analog with the digital. Technology that didn't exist then - technology from the past...images that were safely hidden away and just waiting to finally be seen. The wait is over and it is time to revisit these images I created at a very interesting time not only in my creative life but in history."
All works are only being offered in limited numbers of museum archival quality giclee prints. Each will be hand numbered and signed by the artist and are accompanied with a certificate of authenticity.
These extraordinary images have never been seen before and are a window of a world that until now only existed in artists memory. Now you can not only share a view from that window into the past but own one of your very own to enjoy forever.
We highly recommend that you take the time to visit his Kickstarter project page and make a pledge to support this artist and his vision. View this unique project here: https://www.kickstarter.com/