Coming Into Focus

PhotographerEllen Jantzen
Prize1st Place in Special
Entry Description

A new environment can bring both delight and a fear of the unknown. In this series I am exploring the realm of one’s environmental surroundings, how it is absorbed into one’s psyche and how this changes through relocations. In these days of refuges relocating from their homelands to distant places, my move from the Midwest to the West may seem trivial, but there are still feelings of dislocation and assimilation that take place. I approach this new work as both a window through which I observe my new surrounds (recording what I see) and a mirror where I bring my sensibilities to bear, reflecting my inner state of being. I use layering and blending modes to merge the observed environment with my internal intuition. I’m striving to visually capture the essence of my new environment while at the same time learning to understand.

About Photographer

As an artist who uses photography as an art form, I am interested in states of reality. How is reality experienced; how is it revealed? As I become more aware of the many scientific theories about multi-universes, space/time conundrums and the like, I find reality difficult to define and a challenge to depict. I am drawn to this challenge by striving to make visual that which may not have a visual component. I am always interested in looking beyond the surface in the hopes of revealing something deeper and unexpected. Photographs were once considered "truthful", but we now know there has been photo tampering going on since its inception. Because photos are "believed" there is a great deal of room to play within photography's reality to create a personal fiction (a visual poetry) that is more open to interpretation. This is the very reason I was drawn to photography ten years ago as a creative medium. Photography, especially digitally aided photo collage/montage, is a potent medium through which I am able to communicate the ways I see and understand the world.