This week’s Sunday Showcase is focused on Eric from ehowton photography. Eric is one of the few artisans I know in real life. I’m a long time admirer of his work. When I first met him, his primary interest was in photographing architecture, but he’s expanded his talents to include portraits, staged art shots, and creating special effects with PhotoShop. (Click on the pics to enlarge.)
1. Tell us about your photography.
Simply put, I strive to discover the extraordinary in the ordinary. This can be manifested by something as simple as a perspective shift, or perhaps an unusual focal length for the subject matter. I especially enjoy incorporating otherwise inconsequential minutia as part of the whole via high-dynamic range, or aggrandizing something minor as a focus point.
2. How long have you been doing photography?
I received my first camera when I was seven years old and have been a shutterbug on and off ever since, learning black and white developing in middle school and becoming the sole photographer for the high school newspaper. I wasn’t really serious about the craft until four years ago when I was asked to do a senior portrait set for new friends. I wasn’t equipped correctly for such an undertaking and had to quickly up my game.
3. How did you get started?
It was my grandmother who gave me my first camera, an Eastman Kodak instamatic. My first picture was of a rusting boxcar adjacent a set of abandoned tracks. I liked how forlorn it looked near the paved road.
Alas, it is not. Sometimes I wish it were, but I can imagine getting burned out by the grueling effort doing it day in and day out. Like most things which are successful, the majority of the work goes on behind the scenes. Often finding the extraordinary requires a measure of physical exertion, time, or travel; while a successful shoot is always a boon, motivation behind the next great shot can be a fickle mistress given the juxtaposition between effort and outcome.
5. Do others participate in your artisan photography business?
Absolutely! My daughter is part packmule for on-location shoots and part apprentice as she often handles entire shoots on her own when I am unavailable. And without my fiancée, I would not have succeeded as a portrait photographer as “unusual focal lengths” rarely translates into flattering glamor. She is my foundation, and the one whose inspiration for posing and backdrops I have learned to trust.
6. What inspires you?
Excellent question! I’ve not really thought about it. I suppose the discarded, the odd, the out-of-place, the anachronistic. While a highly waxed car is very pretty, it is not nearly as interesting to photograph as a world-worn patina on a vehicle someplace you wouldn’t expect it.
7. What do you love most in regard to your photography?
A good cloud day. It can make all the difference!
Taken with a fish-eye lens
8. What is your biggest challenge?
Lighting is almost always a challenge. I prefer natural lighting and a good lens, and seemingly always struggle with flash – the number of, location of, and light modifiers on flash – especially when shooting on a schedule or in changing lighting conditions.
Eric got to photograph Bernie at a town hall meeting
9. Do you have a favorite quote?
Calvin Coolidge: “Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not: nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not: the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent.”
10. Do you have a website (or social media sites) where people can connect with you?
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