THOMAS WELLS PHOTOGRAPHY
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Biography


  TW

I got my first camera when I was about 10, but I really didn't get serious about photography until I was in high school.  Over the past 45 odd years I have taken tens of thousands of  photos.  Most of these were taken in and around the rolling hills and forests of central Connecticut, which I have always called home.  I enjoy the natural world and spend time hiking, kayaking and sailing.  I also have a passion for travel, which I seem to do far too seldom.   It seems natural to bring a camera along and try to capture that which inspires and find a way to convey that inspiration to others in the form of a printed photograph.  I have never had any formal training in photography or the arts.  I learned what I know about art and composition by looking at pictures and deciding why some work, and why others donít.  Subjects that interest me are the natural, light, water, the old, and the ancient, rather than the glitz of modern society.

For me, photography is mostly about exploration and discovery.   I love to wander, especially in unfamiliar places, not knowing what lies over the next ridge.  Though sometimes there is much planning to be in a certain place at the right time, much of the process is happenstance and improvisation, not previsualization. Very often, the most significant discoveries are made during the journey rather than at the destination.  Planning creates opportunity.  What happens then is a mixture of luck, observation and realization of whatís before me, that there is something of significance and worth recording.  That's when the work begins.

There is discovery in familiar places too.  It never ceases to amaze me that no matter how many times I visit the same places near home, there are things to be discovered, overlooked in past visits.   Natures ceaseless change presents a new landscape with every visit.  Some changes are noted from year to year, day to day, sometimes second to second.  A visit in the afternoon is different than a visit in the morning.

Photographer Gallan Rowell spoke of unexpected convergence, when several elements come together in an unexpected way, resulting in a new whole that is greater than the sum of its parts.  It may be finding a particular angle for a shot that creates a juxtaposition of several elements of a scene in the frame, or exploiting a particular angle or quality of  light, that results in a composition that presents a meaning greater than just the components of the image.  At other times, an image can be very fleeting, just a few seconds as clouds move across a landscape, momentarily highlighting a subject to provide focus and propel it from the ordinary to the extraordinary.  Composition can also be a subtractive process, by finding a perspective that removes unnecessary elements that distract a viewer's focus, reducing a subject to its essence.  At other times, a little mystery can draw the viewer in to explore an image.  Something hinted at, but not obvious or shown.  Something beyond the door, around the corner, or obscured in the mist.

 

Thomas Wells © 2015
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