Through our lens

Putting photography front and centre

Sunday, July 14, 2019

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In the age of the smartphone, which puts a camera at the fingertips of a large number of people, photography as an art form seems to be diminishing. But that's not going to happen anytime soon if local photographers Cheryl Hylton, Ulrick Lawrence and Dane Hucey have their way.

The trio was among a group of local artists who took their work to the streets at last month's staging of ArtWalk organised by Kingston Creative and held at various locations in downtown Kingston.

The threesome staged a collective exhibition at the events art market under the theme 'Combined Perspectives', where their not only showcased their works of art through black and white and vivid colour images, action shots, moments in time, candid shots and digital art , but also demonstrated their love of photography and the work being down by Kingston Creative to foster and develop the local art scene through the monthly ArtWalk series.

“It's a collection of eclectic art that represents where each of us are on our photographic journey and it's literally a moment in time because we each do a wide range of things, so it was very interesting for each of us stepping back and trying to figure out what to select for this particular exhibition. We didn't make any attempt to distinguish by artist, we literally just hung the pieces based on how we feel they flowed. Certainly as you go around and you see just who does what, you might pick up a common thread. We called it Combined Perspectives and that's exactly what we wanted it to be. We literally just saw this thing where Kingston Creative wanted visual artists to show up and because of the symbiotic relationship with Kingston Creative, we wanted to be here. Certainly what Kingston Creative is doing we are just loving it , especially as we see it grow from month to month,” noted Hylton.

“The opportunity to be part of this is definitely not something we would have walked away from. The interest has been phenomenal. This opportunity to share what we do with the public. This is particularly important given the discussion which is out there as to whether or not photography has value in the age of the smart phone. The interest that has been show in our work proves that it does. Anybody can take a good picture, but when you look at things like the time spent and knowing how to capture the best light to bring out a particular mood or essence,” she continued.

For Lawrence, who is president of the Jamaica Photography Society, working with Kingston Creative is a no-brainer and redounds to the benefit of artists like himself.

“I wouldn't say I have a particular style, if you look at my body of work you will find a rather eclectic mix, so there is not a single style; however, the one style I can say I'm drawn to is light. So dramatic light — whether its soft or hard — is what is at the base of my photography. The drama that comes from light is what excites me. I've been told that I'm a light snob. The Kingston Creative effort is quite beneficial to the local artist community. This is the first time that I've taken part in the event, but we've had other photographers who have displayed previously. It was an easy decision as it works along with our goals, which is to bring photography into the same fold as the other fine arts,” he shared

Hucey, who only returned to Jamaica after living overseas, noted that ArtWalk represents a movement whose time has come.

“Watching Kingston Creative and what they are doing now is exactly what I have been talking about for a long time now. So this is my first time and this is the type of energy that I like. I love this type of creative energy and being able to display my work along with my colleagues and people are coming to see. Having done quite a bit of travelling, the amount of resources that we have here as creatives is just phenomenal and it's time we start putting it out there.”


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