BREAKING DOWN THE BORDERS

My latest series of work queries the border area surrounding works on paper and how the border can be used creatively to dynamically affect the feeling of the image itself and its relationship to its immediate environment.


DAVID HOPTMAN

Historically the Border areas of Photographic prints and other works on paper were designed to safely handle the art work without having to touch the image itself as well as acting as a type of buffer should the print fall on its edge etc. My latest series of work queries the border area surrounding works on paper and how the border can be used creatively to dynamically affect the feeling of the image itself and its relationship to its immediate environment.

I initiated this series of imagery by transforming the stark white borders of my photographic prints using pastels, watercolors, burning, tearing, collage etc. I begin to realize through my experimentation how significantly the encompassing borders could be used to alter the feeling and dynamic of the photographic image itself.

Window-Shoppers-Mixed Media Platinum Palladium Photo-print
Window-Shoppers-Mixed Media Platinum Palladium Photo-print

One day it dawned on me to use one photograph to frame another and eliminate the border completely. I started to search out buildings or other constructs which had square, round or rectangular openings such as windows, doors etc. I began inserting other photographs into those empty apertures using Photoshop. Each attempt along the way helped to give me a greater insight as to how imagery creates a dialogue with what in the immediate environment surrounds it as well as the dialogue that exists within and between adjacent images.

Santa Fe Railyard_Adobe Structure as frame.
Santa Fe Railyard_Adobe Structure as frame.

After framing images within empty spaces of other images, I began to experiment with combining multiple photographs from similar but different environments into a single image by dropping one photo within another creating a repetitive framing sequence and a unique photographic look. As I began placing one photo within the other varying the sizes, I started to invert every other photo 180 degrees creating a more abstracted rhythm and dynamic feeling. I then applied the above workflow to photographs that were taken directly from the same environment, each photo containing a piece of the whole, then composited into a single photographic image.

FRAMING WITH FRAMING
Tree Framed_Dynamic invert

The final photograph is a compilation from various parts of the original scene that morphs into a cohesive image with borders and frames incorporated into the entirety of the composition. Sometimes the whole can be greater than the sum of its part. The evolutionary process of this series will most likely continue, no end in sight for now.

Framed Santa Fe Fine Art Museum
Framed Santa Fe Fine Art Museum

 


Author: dhstudio@mac.com

I am and have been a professional photographer for more than 30 years and have been teaching almost that long. I am currently teaching photography at The Santa Fe University of Art and Design. I also teach workshops in Santa Fe NM and in Tuscany Italy. Originally I am from Detroit and attended college at The College for Creative Studies Art and Design.

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