Week 8-Collaborate with an artist

It is funny how ideas develop. With this idea I was thinking I might collaborate with a painter, of fabric artist and shoot someone in front of their art to create a dynamic portrait. I put a message out on FB and although I got plenty of likes I didn’t get any offers of interest.

Not sure what to do I quickly realized I was actually in the middle of collaborating with an artist already. I had been asked by local jeweler to shoot her jewelry.

She had a very specific look in mind. Her purpose for the images is to enter them in Fine Art Gallery showings so it wasn’t the usual necklace laying on a piece of wood or a rock she wanted something much more sophisticated than that. 

Wanting to take on the challenging and liking the idea of trading for the work, (the jewelry whore I am) I quickly started researching ways to photograph the jewelry to get the look she wanted. 

I had just completed a food shoot with fabulous Food photographer Kelsey Hansen

http://www.khansenphotography.com/  in which we shot 26 different food set ups in two days. I was fairly confident I could pull off 9 individual jewelry shots.

Ah.. yeah but… they are shinny and move a lot… and earring really don’t want to stay parallel… a bit more effort and patience was needed-more the patience than anything.


As I was shooting and playing with the light I was intrigued  by the shadows and shapes the jewelry made. One of my favorite artist is Alexander Calder in particular his mobiles. 


I love the simplicity of them but at the same time I recognize how complex the engineering is that goes beyond the aesthetics of the pieces. I enjoy working with wire as a medium but it is a bit cheeky- and has a mind of its own often. You think if you bend it a certain way it should go but that is not always the case.  

I found this to be true with Rachel jewelry. One of the words she used to describe her work was kinetic, she wanted to focus on how the piece changes when it is worn.  Trying to photograph that energy in a studio setting was much more difficult than I expected. 

I had a great time photographing the work (except for the earrings <smile>) and learned a lot. When I was done I just wanted to play with the pieces and see what abstract images I could create. This are the images I have shoot for Creative 52.


I have broken one of my rules for Creative 52 which was to have a person in every photo. (it only took 8 weeks). I plan on doing an artist portrait of Rachel in her studio if she agrees to accompany the work and fit my self imposed rules.

I really enjoyed this challenge and will continue to look for other ways to collaborate with other artist. Personally, I think I can do Creative 52 every year, as I can see it will be different every time.