Photography is my search for pieces of art found by standing in just the right place at the right time.
I want my photographs to communicate clearly and elegantly. So I seek those photographs that seem to say so much more than the view of things a few steps to the right or the one ten minutes earlier or the one that included more or less. I find beauty in the arrangement of things and what the arrangements reveal. The things being photographed may or may not be beautiful, but the colours, lines and forms are beautiful.
My photographs are deliberate, precise and concise. If it's in the frame it's there by intent. For me, intent means selecting an arrangement of objects rather than imposing my will upon them. The squiggle in the clouds echoes the squiggle in the mud because thats the way things look sometimes. I can't shape the clouds or the mud to look that way. But I can choose to align myself and wait for the arrangement of squiggles that appeals to me most and pass up the ones that don't. I favour highly structured, geometric arrangements. Sometimes - when the subject suits it - the photographs can be quite minimal.
I work in projects formed around places. I photograph these place many times over a period of months or years. By visiting and re-visiting many times I learn to see places in new ways and different conditions arise. I think of each outing as putting myself in the path of opportunity. I try to be patient while actively seeing how the world around me is arranged. I photograph the arrangements that seem interesting. Later, I carefully select the ones that are most interesting.
I avoid photographing the popular or familiar views of places. I'd rather put the emphasis on how I see them and what this says about me and the place.
I'm grateful that I've had the opportunity to exhibit my photographs at galleries and thankful to the people who have purchased prints over the years. I appreciate all the people who've taken the time to view one of my photographs at some place or another on the internet and I'm humbled when they choose to share some kind words with me. As a form of communication a photograph is only complete when there is someone to receive it!
Printing photographs for an exhibition or choosing photographs to publish on a website is an integral part of the creative process. Selecting the photographs that matter most is more difficult than taking the photographs in the first place.
A brief description of each of the Portfolios.
I moved to Vancouver, B.C. in the summer of 2012. So, I had a new place to make photographs! The project title is a reference to Douglas Coupland's book City of Glass. I'm more likely to make photographs in the back alleys and under the bridges. A cities' character shows in those places too.
I have a long connection with Edmonton and eventually took to photographing it. I've always though of it as a winter city. The winters are long, cold and dark. The summers are glorious, with long days to make the most of them. Despite the title, there are photographs from all seasons because even when it's not winter it feels like the city is shaped by winter.
Through 2005 and 2006 I mostly made photographs of rural Alberta - especially its roads and horizons. I've always loved the big skies and wide open spaces of the prairies. At the same time, as I traversed the grid of roads that subdivide the southern half of the province I found myself marvelling at how completely it has been transformed by human habitation.
These photographs come from three shallow lakes in the Edmonton area: Cooking Lake, Bittern Lake and Beaverhill Lake. I visited them in all seasons and sometimes arrived to find surprising conditions. Through the summer of 2004 I watched the massive expanse of Beaverhill Lake disappear and become colonized by grass. Bittern Lake was also dry in the fall of that year, though an early snow melted and covered it like a giant skating rink when it froze again. My longest and deepest relationship is with Cooking Lake. I've been fortunate to experience it in many different moods. It could probably have a portfolio of its own and perhaps deserves one.
I've always loved the ocean and living in Vancouver has finally given me an opportunity to photograph it. The first time I visited the tidal flats at Iona Beach (on the mouth of the Fraser River) I was struck by the similarities to the prairie waters I had photographed. The milder climate of the west coast means there is no freezing and thawing but instead there is the ebb and flow of the tide.
Photographing mountains has been a long term and ongoing endeavour. In reviewing my mountain images I was somewhat surprised to discover that they were mostly about water in the mountains.
Photographs taken in Elk Island National Park. Perhaps I should have called it arrangements of wintering aspens.
- Horizons, Lando Gallery, December 1 - 22, 2006
- Prairie Waters, Lando Gallery, September 16 - October 8, 2005
- Art Works Gallery, Vancouver, BC, November, 2013
- Photo-Eye 30th Anniversary Exhibition, Santa Fe, New Mexico, December, 2009
- Green Foundation of South Korea Exhibition 2006 (Theme: Water), Seoul, South Korea, May-July, 2006
- These Parts Through Their Eyes, Lando Gallery, February 17 to March 4, 2006
- SkyScapes: Interpretations of the Alberta Sky, The Edmonton Art Gallery and Alberta Foundation for the Arts Travelling Exhibition, September 2005 to September 2007
- Focused 2005, Photographic Center Northwest, Seattle Washington, juried group exhibition, July 15- August 30 2005
I maintain an active presence on Google+ at google.com/+EricFredine and on Tumblr at ericfredine.tumblr.com. On both of these accounts I post shorter items, works in progress and other ephemera. The blog is for longer, more introspective pieces and to post new work after it has been more carefully considered.
I also maintain a LinkedIn profile at http://www.linkedin.com/in/efredine focused on my alter-ego as a technical leader of software projects.