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MARCUS DEVOE

 

Photography, as a way of art so to speak, has been a passion for me for more than two thirds of my life and I have engaged in it both commercially and personally over this course of time. Ultimately, a photographer is a printmaker, simply because his or her final expression is in the form of a print. This is a fundamental truth and underscores the recognition of photography as a fine art medium. As the tools of photography evolve and expand toward different methods of image production it seems critical that the focus of those truly committed to photography as art, must remain on the print. Without the artist's expression in a print, photography becomes simply an exercise in composition and/or electronic manipulation. My work is produced using traditional silver process photographic methods and digitally using archival inkjet technology. I print my own work. I can tell you from experience, it takes many years to become even a good photographic printmaker and it takes a great commitment of various types of resources to undertake at a serious level. Perhaps this has been the reason why so many "photographers" only have camera equipment. Recording an image is only the first step in the technically complex, artistically creative process called photography and it must be understood that the initial camera work is at best only half as important as the making of the print.

Toward that effort I believe, is something that carries as much importance and that is the artist's fundamental understanding of all the tools involved in his/her craft. It is this complete understanding that frees the artist to be creative, to experiment and then consider the results. Then if something unanticipated should occur (which oftentimes happens), that knowledge enables the artist to incorporate into or reject the outcome from their work. Those who do not understand their tools very well, fumble in their creative process, unable to discern mistakes from what was supposed to happen and then, usually find it impossible to duplicate those wonderful mistakes that could take their work to a new level.

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