insights on art, culture, lifestyle, spirituality, travel, music, society and much much more from a jet-setter currently on "furlough"…

Archive for the month “February, 2008”


I used to think alternative exhibition space was a rarity in this town we call Washington DC; that is, until I made a pit stop at Caramel Boutique (16th and U Street) one chilly, Friday evening to attend the opening of 40×26.667. At this chic clothing store, I found an eclectic mix of photos ranging from the wild and rough terrain landscape of central Spain to the abstract, minimalist architecture of New York City, photos that were peeking out around racks of stylish, avant-garde party dresses and accessories. Local photographers Mark Parascandola (repped by the Nevin Kelly Gallery) and Stirling Elmendorf collaborated in this stunning photographic exhibition, which opened on 25 January, and is bound to leave lasting impression on those who view it.

After making my rounds and chatting with Mark about his photographic interests, I quickly realized that the eye is indeed the entrance to a photographer’s creative soul. The challenge for every photographer is to find subjects and shoot in locations that are compelling not only for them, but for you, the viewer. In order to complete this task successfully, one needs to question the following: what has been done before? what can I do better or different from the rest? … and ultimately, what subjects will force me to take a risk and please the viewers around me?

This day in age, with digital photography being the absolute norm (and a bunch of “wannabes” out there who think they make beautiful pictures), photographers need to constantly be aware of what is going on around them. They must have their camera + equipment by their side 24/7 in order to be at the right place at the right time to document interesting aspects of the subject that is commonly overlooked by the tourist taking a random snapshot of a famous monument in Europe. Good technique is not impossible to learn; it is simply a matter of practice and loads of patience. One must be able to see beauty in the mundane, and recreate it: exceedingly well. Thus is the life story of Mark and Stirling, who have traveled all over the globe to produce these amazing photographs.

I, of course, categorize myself in the “wannabe” section and did my own photographic capturing of the opening, which can be found here. Hope you enjoy them!
40×26.667 is on view from now until Leap Year Day, 29 February 2008. Stop by and see it if you haven’t done so already.


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