#ShitToHit: Saturday – "Ten Feet Away" New Photography Works from Steve Whittier @ Super Ordinary Gallery

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The great Steve Whittier, ex-ECD at Factory and now Brooklyn freelance creative, is returning to Denver to show off his photographic works this weekend. "10 Feet Away" New Photography Works by Steve Whittier is on Second Saturday, March 9, 2013 at Super Ordinary Gallery located in the RINO Art District. Here's The 10 Feet Mix to help get you in the mood.

About 10 Feet Away:
It began on the subway on my way to work. I don’t know exactly why I started taking pictures of the people I sat across from every day. Maybe because I fidget and can’t sit still. Maybe because I was feeling a little alone at the time. I don’t know. I’d take their pictures on my cell phone, post them on Facebook and Instagram, and people would comment. That led to buying a camera. I’ve never owned a real camera before. And I still haven’t read the manual and don’t know exactly how to use it. But I set it on my lap and take a picture. Ten feet away there’s a person I’ve never met. We sit there in this small little space and carve out our privacy and live our lives for a while. Alone but not really. Somehow it outgrew my commute. For 10 months I rode the trains. 656 miles through Brooklyn, Manhattan. Queens and The Bronx. Every train from end to end. And these are the people I never met. The Show will consist of 20 images from the book “Ten feet away” all the images consist of two photos put together, just as they appear in the book. This is not to trick anyone into believing it’s one image, but it’s just how we all ride the subway. Next to somebody else.

Artist Statement:
As an advertising art director of 20 plus years, I’m used to conjuring up images in my head and then figuring out a way to fabricate those images and set them up to be photographed. In my personal work, I don’t fabricate anything. I don’t use props and I don’t interact with the people that I shoot. Executionally, I hold a camera waist high, never even looking through the lens. I don’t want anything between my eyes and the moments that I record. I want to hear the conversations and be immersed in the moments. I shoot very quickly and usually not more than ten to fifteen frames at a time. The moments I shoot don’t last very long. These are every day reactions, movements and conversations. When the moment has passed, I walk away. Although my photography is 180 degrees from my professional career in advertising, I’ve found that these opposites complement each other and are fueled by two types of energy. — The fast and furious and the slow and wandering. Design is where I merge these opposites. Because I don’t set up anything that I photograph, and literally shoot from the hip, what comes out of the camera is often times strangely cropped, out of focus or unevenly lit. So I take these genuine slices of urban life, re-crop them, straighten them, and balance the color, contrast and depth. In this way, I’m able to use my life as a designer to share what was perfect when I lived it — if not imperfect in how I captured it.


Beautiful work Steve, really like the perspective.

Great Stuff!

My first real influence was Walker Evans, and one of the most powerful bodies of his work was the series of photographs of people on the subways he did in the 1930's, shot through the buttonhole of his coat.

It's great to see your take on this fertile subject. Congrats, Steve!

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