August 14, 2010

Warren Brown's interview (Harlequin Photography)








" We live in a world of amazing contrasts, in so many ways. So often we place ourselves at odds with the world and forget what a wonderful place it can be. It provides us with the means to produce many artworks of power and beauty, while showcasing what a marvellous place it is. That's what I strive to do. Here's to the adventure !"
Warren Brown










"Hommage to the Self"
Art Model Candace






You'll find Warren Brown, from Australia, at his official site, deviantART, his first feature, all about him here inside.







"Steppin' Out"
Art Model Xanthe X












Warren, I know your passion began early. When and how exactly ? Do you remember your first experience ?

I was given a camera when I was quite young, about 10 years of age. It was a Hanimex 110, and I was constantly nagging my parents with requests to either buy more film or to have films developed.
It was something that I loved, but I remember my first real "appreciation" of a camera came when I took a photograph of an abandoned building at Silverton, a small town near Broken Hill. My parents had the shot enlaged, and my brother, then an avid painter, painted a copy of it, which he subsequently sold. Sadly, neither that photograph or the painting no longer exist.

As I grew and my photography began to evolve, so did my equipment, from viewfinders to SLR's to Digital SLR's and even medium format.








"Coming Out Of The Dark"

"I looked at this and for some reason had the vision of the model emerging from the dark area of the shot. Is she a princess that's just escaped from the dungeon ? Perhaps a cave dweller resting on the rocks ? Or maybe an evil nymph trying to draw you into the cave ?"





Are you a self taught photographer or did you learn in an art school ?

I was largely self taught, well into my teenage years, but in my late teens I went to a Technical College and did a three month Photography course. It began with the basics of cameras and film, and by the time it ended we were confidently developing and printing our own work. While I've expanded my photographic education and experience considerably since then, that early course gave me a love of darkroom work which I sometimes miss in this electronic age.


I know that !... How long could you be far from your camera ? Do you think you could make something else ?

I don't like to be away from one of my cameras for very long.


If I'm away from home for as little as overnight, a camera will go with me, usually after much agonising about which lens to take with it !


As to making something else, I've dabbled in pottery but without any real success. The camera is what I love.










"Awaiting Inspiration"

"Ever have a time when you sit quietly, waiting for inspiration from somewhere to bring that half-formed idea into being ? Yeah... me too !"










Talking about love, who are your favorite photographers ? Your inspirators ?

I'm largely inspired by Australian photographer Peter Adams for his nude work, and was lucky enough to attend one of his workshops many years ago which taught me a lot about the way to approach nude photography. I strongly admire the landscape work of Aussie photographers Steve Parish and Ken Duncan.








"The Colour Of Life"

"A theme I've been working around for a while. As she travels through the barren landscape, she touches the landscape with life and colour..."





Except nude art, is there another genre you enjoy ?

I've always sought to create the perfect landscape shot. I still shoot film for much of my landscape work, including an aging Pentax 6x7 for black and white work. I find the challenge of capturing a fine landscape - in colour or B&W - endlessly fascinating. The quest continues...


Do you plan every details or is there a large part of improvisation ?

I find inspiration for much of my art nude work in my quest to create landscapes.
I often find a particular location that plants the seed of an idea, and usually take some time to make a basic outline of what I want to achieve from any particular shoot.
There's always an element of improvisation to every shoot though. On occasion the models themselves come up with ideas that I incorporate into a shoot.


Spontaneous work can often produce fantastic results, so I never lock myself in to a particular idea.

I have a working outline to start from and can adapt that at need.










"Quiet Expectation"
Art Model Sutha











"Obsolete"
Art Model Xanthe X





You have a large preference for outdoors shots and B&W. Why ?

I've always loved the outdoors. In Australia we're very lucky to have such a wonderful variety of marvellous outdoor locations, and I try to incorporate the human form into these wherever I can, often seeking to show some element of harmony of the human form with the environment.

I prefer to shoot B&W outdoor nudes, as I like to show contrast in my work, and while I still sometimes shoot colour,


I feel that B&W has the ability to deliver more impact and emotion than colour can in many ways.










"Seeking Answers with Nature"










"When Evening Falls"
Art Model Zoe


"When evening falls, and the daylight is fading from within me calls - could it be I am sleeping ? For a moment I stray, then it holds me completely Close to home - I cannot say ; Close to home, feeling so far away." From the song Evening Falls by Enya














"Reflections of Nature"

"What it is to lay at peace and just reflect on nature... something we all need to do more often. I like the idea not only of the reflection of the model in the water, with the idea of being in peace within nature, but the notion of the pale skin of the model contrasting against the darker surrounds."




You're so right... And your country so beautiful ! Some words about your talented models ?

I've been very lucky. In all the years I've been doing this, I could count on one hand the times I've had any sort of problem with a model, and most of those have been minor.

My models come from all walks of life - professional models to housewives to university students and more - and they always seem to give me 100% of their effort.

Many are the times when models have posed for me in freezing water, clouds of mosquitos, rain, hazardous locations and the harsh Australian sun without a word of complaint.






"Catch my Heart"
Art Model Niansa

"Tomorrow sleeps in the same old lonely places Just an empty dream filled with yesterday's faces Can you tell me, where are my memories ? " from the song Catch My Heart by Warlock





Regardless of our medium of expression – be it chalks, pastels, acrylics, filmbase, charcoal, the 1’s and 0’s of digital, clay, or any of the many other mediums through which artists express themselves, it is the model who helps our creative vision to take form. For that, they have my undying gratitude.













"Angels or Demons"
Art Model Xanthe X












"Separation"
Art Model Believe Hope





How do you feel at the end of a shooting ?

Most of the time I feel quite good. If the shoot has been one where everything has flowed and gone well, I feel a sort of empty exhilaration - like I've purged some sort of creative demon.

Sometimes, I'll identify some minor problem or lighting situation that caused a problem, and I'll often agonise over that until I'm certain that I can resolve it should it occur again. There's always something new to learn.


Perfectionist, isn't it ?... What is your own favourite photo ? Could you choose one ?

That's quite a difficult one. I don't think I could narrow it down to just one shot. However, there are two that I look at with a sense of achievement. One of them is "Convergence" and the other is "Threshold of Shadow".

"Convergence" because as soon as I found the location I knew exactly what I wanted to shoot, and to see the shot exactly as I visualised it was magnificent.




"Convergence"







"Threshold of Shadow" because the shot was achieved in the dying light at the end of the day in the mountains, with the mist rolling in and the cold and rain encroaching on a very dedicated model. Basically, it was a work that was done against the odds, and I've always loved it for that.




"Threshold of Shadow"












"Layers of Life"

"During a shoot near a small waterfall, we found these series of rock shelves in the shade. The rock pool at the bottom, the leaf littered rock, the lichenous rock, the model, and the layer of rock that was the overhang. I tried to make the model another "layer" here. Shot on a tripod at 1/30 through a warming filter, softened very slightly in post processing."





I love them too. "Convergence" (featured in your first exhibition here inside) for its geometric approach, "Threshold of Shadow" for its wonderful tones. Very beautiful compositions !

Dear Warren, I'm sure you have some challenges you're dreaming about ?


Next year I hope to combine a personal ambition with some landscape work. I'll be trekking to the top of Mount Kosciuszko - Australia's highest mountain - which has always been a lifelong dream, and you can be sure I'll have a camera with me. I'm also planning a shoot in the Australian Outback, showcasing some of the heart of this great country.


And when and where will be your next exhibition ?

I never really considered an exhibition until quite recently. I hope to have an exhibition of my work in February - March of next year. There's an inner city gallery in Darlinghurst in Sydney that I've been conducting some informal negotiations with, but nothing concrete at this stage.










"Startled Starlet"
Art Model Jezzamyn










Don't forget to keep us informed. Have you published a book ?

I haven't been published to date. It's something else that I've begun to seriously consider of late, but I'm receiving a lot of encouragement to do so - to give my vision to everyone - from a wide variety of people.








"The Embrace"
Art Model Jodie Bellon





What is your best way to promote your work ?

Most of my work seems to be promoted by word of mouth at this stage. After spending almost five years developing and refining my technique, I'm starting to receive solid feedback through my portfolio site on MuseCube and through my presence on deviantART.

My contributions to the Michelle 7 site have also been very well received, with one being "held" as the cover exhibition for several months.

I feel an exhibition would be a good way to further promote my vision.


That's clear. Where can we purchase your prints ?

The best way is to approach me directly. I can be contacted at harlequinphoto@yahoo.com.au.






"Holding Back The Dark"

"Shot entirely with natural light, the tensed look of the models muscles and body, and the pose, suggested the title. The walls, the looming blackness behind.....and the model stands there, shining against the dark."






Any message you’d like to leave our readers ?

We live in a world of amazing contrasts, in so many ways. So often we place ourselves at odds with the world and forget what a wonderful place it can be. It provides us with the means to produce many artworks of power and beauty, while showcasing what a marvellous place it is. That's what I strive to do. Here's to the adventure !


A true message... "What a wonderful world !"



Thanks a lot Warren ! Thanks to play the game with such a kindness.
Come back soon, this site is definitively yours.










"Into The Mists..."

"Who knows what you might find as you push aside the expectations of others,
and take your own journey Into The Mists..."


3 comments:

Warren B. said...

I'm deeply honoured. Thank you indeed.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for an idea, you sparked at thought from a angle I hadn’t given thoguht to yet. Now lets see if I can do something with it.

Anonymous said...

Wow this is a great resource.. I’m enjoying it.. good article