Dunescapes

Project Images

Gallery Overview

Individual Images


Image 1


Image 2


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Image 6


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Image 8

Project Description

Dunescapes is a photography project that unfolded over several years as I explored vast sand dunes and the ever-changing intimate spaces within them. As the project reached (or nears) completion, it has become a study in perception of light, shadow, and space. Perhaps I’m a bit dark, but I have come to see it, more philosophically, as saying something about details of life and mortality, both presence and nothingness, expressed in black and white images to promote a reflection on the infinite and finite in space and time.

Self Critique

What I like about this project: I love the variety in the forms the sand dunes take and also the combinations of detail and negative space. I like the ways some dunes feel like a wave, others like a human body, and still others like a descent into nothingness.

What I think could be improved: I’m wondering if some of the images are too weak to be included. I also have a few variations on a couple of the images (the wave image has darker versions). I struggled throughout to keep the aspect ratio variations to a minimum. I do like having both 4x6 and 1x3, but one image in particular looks best to me at 16:9. I don’t know if that’s a deal breaker.

Creative Direction

When I was most actively working on this body of work, I wanted to hone my skills with abstraction (not as abstract as I have become) and explore black and white more intentionally, not just as a back up plan for blue sky days.

As it evolved over a few years, it began to speak to me in a different way, not so much as a technical challenge but as a reflection on space and time (both the infinite and finite) and therefore, to some extent, about the path of life itself, and our own inevitable mortality.

Specific Feedback

I’m especially seeking feedback on the following:

  1. Aesthetic: Does the overall project have visual appeal? Is it aesthetically engaging?
  2. Conceptual/Emotional: What is the emotional response you feel when looking at the images as a group? Does it resemble the description I provided above?
  3. Does any particular image need to be removed to improve the coherence of the series (or the last two swapped in order)?
  4. Does the combination of two aspect ratios work for you?
  5. I’ll share a couple of alternates–do you prefer any of those?

Intent of the project

Additional Details: It’s been on my website for a while, but now I’ve been asked to share my work in the Teacher and Learning Center where I work, a community college in Vancouver WA. The “Gallery” wall at the TLC is lavender, and so this turns out to be about the only project I have that could arguably look okay on a lavender wall. As I’m an English teacher sharing this in a fairly informal environment, I’m not terribly opposed to the wall color. My last “show” was at a pub in Prineville OR where my work was accompanied in their hallway by a construction paper garland of jack o’ lanterns.

Alternate Images

Please provide feedback on whether any of these images would fit more cohesively in the project.


Alternate Image 1


Alternate Image 2


Alternate Image 3

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