“The content of my images is inspired by the interchange between human activity and the natural world, where each cyclically affects the other.” - the artist
Having a camera with me throughout the day, whether my DSLR or my smart phone, tends to make me vividly aware of my surroundings in ways I am ordinarily not. On my daily rounds, I am drawn to the things we usually take for granted or overlook: shadows, glare, detritus, reflections, scarred surfaces, the view out the window. The content of my images is inspired by the interchange between human activity and the natural world, where each cyclically affects the other. On some days, I end up with a series of photos of similar content. On others, I simply have a narrative of the campus of my travels.
There is little forethought to my process, though I find robust subjects and themes that run through my work. I try to compose each shot as I take it, and manipulate the image later. The origins of the images included in this submission are as assorted as one might imagine. Elevator walls, cracks in linoleum, rivulets of ice, dirty windows, rusted porch furniture, and dew-covered playground equipment are among the motley sources that I find on my daily parade.
Focusing on the brain's often-deceitful role in how we perceive things, I regularly over-saturate color and distort various elements of my original images in order to draw attention to and dramatize the textures, topographies, contours, and hues of my subjects. I take the privilege of altering that that has already been altered, thus participating more directly in the cycle of nature/human exchange. The painterly result is more heightened and enigmatic than the “reality” implied in the original photographs.
My career is as varied and random as my subject matter. I spent nearly five decades in acting and sound design for theater and film; playing, writing and recording music; creating music videos; recording soundtracks for radio, television, films, theater pieces, dance projects, and museum installations. I have spent the subsequent 15 years working with children, often involving them in the art forms mentioned. Photography is the way I now create art.
As may be inferred from my work, my tastes are eclectic. I am stimulated by the work of a variety of artists from different eras, areas, art forms, and genres. Inspired by these vibrant creators and their art, I hope that my own vision equally heartens others — to stop and look along the way; to more closely regard the beauty of our surroundings and our involvement in them; and to contemplate our own place in a kaleidoscopic, microscopic universe.
About the artist:
Brian Hallas is a photographer, filmmaker, sound designer, songwriter, and educator. He has been involved with the theater since the third grade, and as a sound designer and performer, he’s been an associate of National Medal of the Arts recipient Ping Chong since 1983. Brian began to adopt photography as a serious medium for exploration and expression upon becoming a schoolteacher, where economy of effort to achieve maximum effect is one of the keys to survival. The daily rituals of taking, processing and posting his photographs are an oasis of creativity in a very troubled era. As one of the multitudes of perks afforded by a life in the Arts, Brian has especially been fortunate to have dined contentedly in many parts of the world where he otherwise would never have dined.
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