At times you just don’t have enough information in one picture. Canadian photographer / painter Jonathan Dy must have thought so as he found out new ways to incorporate information into his photographs in form of multi-flash and reflection pictures. Of course, both techniques aren’t new but the way Jonathan has perfected them is impressive, to say the least!
Jonathan: I was born in Windsor, ON where I went to school for painting. In 2005 I moved to Vancouver, BC and taught myself how to use a camera.
The ‘eye on the ground’ series was my first photographic obsession in 2008. The process taught me how to use a digital camera as if it were film by not doing any post-manipulation. Instead quality was heavily dependent on weather – the freshness of the water, wind, amount of sun/cloud, and time of day all played a hand in color and clarity.
About a year later I transitioned from chasing puddles made by rain to constructing D.I.Y. reflections out of plastic, water, and food coloring. And making puddles in actual paintings is the most recent addition to my batch of manual/portable techniques.
At the end of 2010 attention shifted from day to night when I attempted to capture a friend having a conversation with herself. I wanted to see the internal dialogue that people have when making decisions or reflecting.
Unfortunately, my digital camera lacks the ability to take multiple exposures, so the next best option was to shoot in the dark and bring the subject out with several flashes while changing positions.
This series has given me the opportunity to work with some of my favorite musicians, and fellow artists in Vancouver. Performers with a strong sense of space were among the easiest and most enjoyable to work with. An exceptional case was a six piece Vancouver band, “Brasstronaut” eating each others heads at my dinner table – we got it in under one minute and two tries.
Over a year into this series and it still feels like I’m just getting started.. There’s a story from almost every shoot – and the portraits themselves turned into narratives.
Although my aim with the shots in the dark and reflections is to do as much as possible in-camera – I’m also drawn to the absence of color and have been using photoshop to turn photos black and white.