Open Studios 2012: The Visitors

Open Studios 2012 at The Image Flow

Open Studios was a big success. More than 150 people dropped by The Image Flow’s new studio and gallery space in Mill Valley over the weekend to see photographs by Barbara Hazen, Stuart Schwartz and myself.

I set up a light and photographed as many of the visitors as I could against the still-unfinished studio wall. I love the mixture of people and their expressions. Everyone has a “oh, you’re taking my picture” face and you can see many of those here. Click on any of the thumbnails below to launch the gallery.

Here’s the work I showed — all new images. Enjoy.

photocrati gallery

On the Job: A Painter

Greg Martin, Marin County painter and Marin Magazine cover contest winner

I had the opportunity this year to again photograph the winner of Marin Magazine’s annual cover contest. The winner, chosen from among more than 400 entries, was painter Greg Martin.

I photographed Greg in his studio, a basement space in his San Anselmo home. The studio is small, not more than than 10 x 20, and Greg is a big guy, what some would call a strapping lad. I squeezed a small strobe and umbrella against one wall, and let the light ricochet around the studio’s white walls and ceiling, producing a nice, soft look.

Greg’s artwork, which walks the line between whimsical and ethereal — a fun place to be — provided the backdrop. Later, I noticed he wore the same deep red Pelton’s Triumph T-shirt that he has in his bio photo for his website.

Greg was the main attraction at the magazine’s Open Studios’ party celebrating the finalists for the cover. Here are  some snapshots of him and some of the others. He has a show up at Gallery Bergelli in Larkspur (the opening is tonight.)

I enjoy photographing artists, especially painters because their studios and their painting supplies fascinate me (although Greg’s was a bit too clean for my taste). Here’s my post from a year ago about photographing the 2011 cover contest winner and a collection of other artist portraits.

Visit your local Marin artist this weekend (May 12-13) during Marin Open Studios. I’m showing my newest work at The Image Flow, 401 Miller Ave., in Mill Valley, from 11-6.

On the Job: Artists in Residence

Jeff Beauchamp

A while back I had the opportunity to photograph a few Marin County painters in their studios and write a short piece for Marin Magazine about the curiosity the artist’s studio holds for most of us who earn our keep in more prosaic ways. This allure is one reason for the success of open-studio events, which allow the general public to wander, glass of chilled Chardonnay in hand, amid the wondrous clutter of these creative spaces.

“We flock to them like curious visitors to a carnival sideshow,” I said. “Oh, see how they live! There are their paints! What whimsical furniture! … the voyeur who lives in all of us?—?the one who surreptitiously peeks into the closets of friends (and don’t we all?)?—?is thrilled by the backstage pass into this normally cloistered corner of the art world. Perhaps the paint-spattered floors will reveal the key to innovation? Maybe the pungent varnishes will awaken dormant inspiration? Could that rack of half-finished canvases spur completion of our own inchoate dreams?”

A bit much? Perhaps. But nosy I am and in search of inspiration as well, so I never pass by the open door of someone else’s studio — especially if I have camera in hand.

Fairfax painter Jeff Beauchamp (above) works out of bland, beige office building whose monochromatic exterior belies the explosions of color on canvas he produces. Jeff won the magazine’s annual cover contest and I photographed him in his studio with his vintage Fender Telecaster, which occupies his hands when his brushes are idle.

The gallery below includes some recent artist portraits, all painters except for  Mill Valley musician Austin de Lone at his keyboard. His story is here. The artists in the order shown are:

Elizabeth Gorek; Georgette Osserman; Kay Carlson; Eric Zener; Sue Averell; Austin de Lone; Jeff Beauchamp.

photocrati gallery