Beyond Persona

November 12 – 24, 2015
OPENING: November 12, 2015 7pm

Disparate visions from seven Victoria photographers. This exhibition is a result of ten months intense work under the mentorship of Quinton Gordon of Lúz Studios. The photographers set goals to break through the wall of their self-assumed photographic personalities and protective masks, letting their true vision reveal itself through the work by going Beyond Persona.

Lia Crowe

With countless hours in front of a camera during a decade where she worked as an international model Lia spent the next decade transitioning to being behind the camera. With experience on both sides she developed a love for the interaction involved in portrait photography. She appreciates the difference of when expression is real and when it is faked always striving for the real, a genuine moment or interaction as she feels that is the difference between a beautiful picture and one that penetrates beyond the eye. Lia is a portrait photographer, stylist and creative director for a Print magazine in Victoria, BC.
Finding myself often drawn to certain documentary portrait work of other photographers I realize that what penetrates deeply in me is work which is intimately personal, and emotionally connected to the photographer. Starting this project I was motivated to explore and document certain topics that interested me but were outside my own life. I soon realized that although it was hard to come around to, the work was right in front of me, documenting my own families’ experience of life, my own intimate view of them. Though this I have learned that the more personal my project became the more challenge it offered.

Demetri Tsimon

Born 1950. Childhood fascination with my father’s 1948 Leica camera got me interested in photography. He gave me that camera in the early ‘60s; he was a terrible photographer anyway. It is my most prized possession and I still use it occasionally. Since then I am stuck with rangefinder Leicas. I am mostly self taught except for a brief period (1978-1981) when working in a professional photo studio gave me the opportunity to increase my technical skills such as they are.

Neither nature nor people move me. I am not interested in my photography -conceptually, skillfully, beautifully or not- to describe or depict. I try to make photographs about and not of things. I am attracted to light and shadow and confusing perspectives. I prefer using a simple photographic vocabulary and the tonal choreography of black and white. Colour is too literal and I don’t have the ability or inclination to escape from that. Black and white film suits me fine. I don’t seek photographs but I let them find me. I don’t photograph a lot. I heed my father’s advice: don’t waste your film.

Mike Zastre

Memories of buying Kodachrome with paper-route earnings remind Mike Zastre that he has been a photographer for many years. At present he is re-discovering pleasures and perils of traditional film-based
practices. However, Mike isn’t (yet) afraid of digital processes given his day job is teaching Computer Science at UVic.
This project began as my attempt to capture the face and character of several local men whose lives have been given to religious ministry. However, it revealed itself to me as a route along a road not taken.
What might my face have become if that vocation had chosen me?

Robert Lemmon

Robert Lemmon, a retired CA/CPA with forty years of professional experience in public practice and industry, in his life-long pursuit of photography, developed a passion for the art of photography and the telling of stories through a photograph.

I photograph in monochrome as it captures what I see and how I see it. Strength exists in the contrast of light and dark, black and white and all the shades of grey in between, the mood and atmosphere created by the contrasts and shadows. As I became more observant, my photographs became more focused and stronger with a greater emphasis on the interplay of light and dark, on tones and shadows and a combination of simplicity and complexity. The selected works, from the series, Reflection, illustrate this increased observation.

Wes Shelley

Wes Shelley was born in Victoria, BC, in 1984 and attended the Victoria Conservatory of Music as a composer. In 2005, during his time studying at the Conservatory, Wes sought out a kickboxing gym to begin training at. This initial taste of combative sports led to a lifelong obsession, not with the violence of combat, but with the positive personal growth that he experienced in the pursuit of martial arts. In 2014, after a 7 year artistic shift from music to photography, Wes began a book project documenting the careers of three professional fighters from Zuma Martial Arts: Alexi Argyriou, Ryan Janes, and Sarah Kaufman. His work attempts to capture a side of the fight world that very few people are privy to; a side that is full of beauty, comradery, fear, celebration, sacrifice, and defeat. Utilizing black and white film, he presents the work with a rawness and grit that almost agrees with the public perception of fighting, but Wes challenges the viewer to look past the surface aesthetic to find a depth that exists in each captured moment.

Kristin Thomson

In this documentary project I wanted to record the good, the bad, and the magical times of early childhood. Life is moving so fast and children change so quickly, it was important to me to capture this time of unguarded honesty. This is a time when they wear their emotions from head to toe. There is no hiding their boundless joy to their aching heartbreaks. Somewhere along the path to adulthood they construct a veneer to hide their thoughts, learning to choose what they will allow us to see. As well, on a small scale I wanted my own children to see the beauty and wonder of them through their mother’s eyes.

Through the study of both history and photography Kristin found herself drawn to photojournalism and conflict photography in particular. There is an unstaged truth in such imagery where the viewer feels a connection to the subject even decades after they have passed. The documentation of an event down to the single individual has always been meaningful to her. In a broader view now Kristin believes that every life has its own personal history to be recorded, from the life changing moments that we experience to the everyday seemingly ordinary moments that bind us together.

Gerry Harrison

To some being older is a event too far away to really consider and to those much closer to this moment a place really not to be considered. Age has a way of making your eyes wiser and more sensitive to the topic. I love shooting film and am not allowed enough space in this bio to defend myself. I love the unique image as I hope you will. Gerry Harrison

A popular American sitcom was once described as a “show about nothing ” and in someway my project may parallel this. It’s a result of 9 months of endless walking about our city , neighbourhoods and proximity. The only topic was what attracted me either by light, colour or luck. Every image was shot in 35mm using a 21mm lens and Kodak Portra 400 film. Thank you for showing interest in the show and the individual projects