posted by Ian Summers on September 3rd, 2014

. Screenshot 2014-09-09 15.02.10

Dave: 

I have the ideal client in the truest sense and this is a dream project. We shared in the editing process, possibly the most important part of the project. 

When I shoot, I work quickly and intuitively shooting at times without looking at the subject, and looking for something I have not seen before.  Because I am limited to 30 minutes at most per subject, I tend to shoot quite a bit, rather quickly, stopping to ask, listen, connect, and share. 

Sometimes my client will ask me to edit prior to presenting the images to him.  Other times he goes through each frame with me.  He makes the call whether to leave it in, but may concede to my opinion if it is strong enough.  Often he excitedly states, “That’s it! That’s it. That’s Kenwyn!”  Sometimes he considers multiple options and compares. 

He is looking for what he knows of that person during the edit, what he has seen before, his experience of that person.  I am looking for the best image, unexpected, telling, emotional and powerful.  But what I know of these people is limited and intuited at best.  He conceded that he learned more about these people through the experience I conveyed while photographing them.  I found the dialogue during our routine editing sessions to be profound, confirming subtle and intimate details from each of our experiences.  His understanding of photography and portraiture grew rapidly, reminding me of why he heads a very successful company.

When I described what I have understood of the subject, my client often felt I was spot on. He often looks for consensus in the editing, which I cannot always provide.  I weigh this conviction to his decision with my feelings about the images.  At times I strongly disagree and at times I simply nod, totally agreeing. 

He will switch out images, often after they are hanging.  He will go back and re-edit, or ask me to re-edit, as he sees a pattern of expressions that he decides are not revealing or possibly redundant. I believe on any given day we may pick different images. There is no right image.  I know this bothers him, but I cannot consider his occasional question, “Which image is most artistic?” That would lead me towards choosing the best photograph that satisfies my pursuits rather than supporting his collection. After all, the creative process and spontaneity are strong allies of this project. 

Ian: 

This project is dynamic. You will not find someone quite like this man again, He is a man of vision. Could you see this project happening for someone else? 

Dave: 

I don’t know. Don’t know. Don’t know… Certainly not with the same treatment. The Thread of Vision 

Ian: 

There is a thread of vision no matter how you treat the subject. It feels as if it was photographed by the same person. It goes beyond technique. It goes beyond style. 

Dave: 

I think the relationship with the man is the thread.  These subjects all love him. Many relationships go back decades. Since he did the editing with me, his vision as well as my own runs throughout the project. Our blood is everywhere. 

.

What’s your take?

Please share your comments

.

posted by Ian Summers on September 3rd, 2014

.By Ian Summers and Dave Moser

Screenshot 2014-09-09 15.14.48

Ian:

I was fascinated by this project. To my knowledge nothing like this had ever been attempted in the corporate world.  I met Dave’s private client at his office to interview him for an upcoming book of Dave’s photographs.

His walls are covered with interesting paintings. He took me on a tour. He is a passionate and tasteful collector.  There weren’t any photographs.

His personal office was a work in progress. At this time, there were about twenty-four of Dave’s portraits displayed side-by-side opposite his desk. The man beamed. A piece of his heart was featured on his office walls. He told me he loved each subject in a different way.

I wanted to know more about them. What was it that made each person lovable? I asked him to introduce me to each subject. He made the introductions as if the person was actually in the room. He did this spontaneously. I was mesmerized.

Dave was announced by the receptionist and joined the meeting carrying work his client hadn’t seen. The framed prints were wrapped in brown paper. As he unwrapped them, I saw his face. It was as if he was a little boy receiving a birthday present. It was a very childlike response from the man in a suit. I thought, “This man is a multi-faceted maverick.”

Dave and his client began hanging and rearranging pictures to new positions in the collection. With each new juxtaposition, the work, the room, Dave, the client, and I seemed transformed.

We realized that this project expresses what so may people feel about folks who matter in their lives. This body of work is a unique expression of love. We expect it will inspire and become a model for others. This is a tribute to the fine people we touch (and are touched by) in our lives when we begin to pay attention. And that is exactly what it does.

 

Dave:

This project greatly expanded our friendship. We shared profoundly intimate portions of our lives. I found his childlike enthusiasm intoxicating.

.

What’s your take?

Let us read your comments.

.

 

posted by Ian Summers on August 22nd, 2014

.

By Ian Summers & Dave Moser

.

Screenshot 2014-08-22 10.42.11

 

I invited my coach of seven years, Ian Summers to help present this love story to my blogpost readers. This was our take.

Ian:

It has been two years since Dave Moser’s client, who for reasons of privacy wishes to remain anonymous,  invited Dave to create portraits of people he loves – people who matter in his life. The client wanted to be surrounded by the faces of people who mean the most to him.

His vision was to look up from his desktop in the middle of his intense day’s work to make eye contact with some of the most significant people in his life. His family is included. So is his loyal, lifelong automobile mechanic, an award winning novelist, and other dear friends. Dave accepted the challenge to create an expressionistic, emotional, raw, and honest look for the series.

.

Screenshot 2014-08-22 10.42.26

.

The Collaborators

Dave:

I met this man back in 1999 and have photographed for his company on and off throughout our relationship. He is a Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. A couple of years ago, he invited me to lunch and I took the opportunity to show him my portfolio. A friendship grew.

I showed him my recent work and he got excited about the RWA project (Ready, Willing & Able) that I had just completed.  He is an art collector and has purchased scores of paintings that enhance the environment of his company’s headquarters and residences.  He did not really think of photography as an art form until then. His tastes were expanding from decorative landscape to more modern work. I think he was opening up emotionally. That’s why he connected with the RWA project.

He responded to these RWA images:

.

Screenshot 2014-08-22 10.42.44

.

Ready, Willing and Able is the Philadelphia chapter of the national organization The Doe Fund, a privately funded transitional program for recovering addicts, ex-convicts and the formerly homeless.

My client invited me to have a one man show to celebrate his firm’s 25th anniversary. There was an image that was on the wall for that month; the freckled Caucasian man shown above. He really connected with this portrait. A short time later, he commissioned me to photograph him and a man who was working on his residence for over forty years.

.

Screenshot 2014-08-22 10.42.58

 

.

I developed a process/treatment that deconstructs beauty or expected appearances, and invites the viewer to relate to the unique energy subjects offer through expression and gesture.  The extreme detail, not ordinarily seen by human eyes, breaks with expected conventions. This is further emphasized by the abstraction of black and white. I believe others see our energy long before they see the things we have obsessed about in the mirror since adolescents.  When seen in the body of this work, we are invited to accept a new visual language as a way to connect with the subjects. Through this new visual language you see their beauty, their humanity.

The client ordered four 16 x 24 prints that were framed only with glass. At first he had all three of them up.  He took his picture down and placed it behind the door. In January 2012 he sent me this email:

I want 25 portraits of friends and family all hung at the same level and the same size I think it would bless my office an life in a special way. As you know, I already have four shots like this and all of the photographs show their inner light, character and soul. I have come to learn through Dave that photography can be art. His portraits let you inside the person’s heart and soul and affect me. I wanted the real time experience of my friends. I am grateful for your authenticity, your creative genius, intuition and so much more.

At this point, I was unaware of how this project would grow to over one hundred portraints taking me to Scotsdale, Orlando, Atlanta, Louisville, NYC via limo, and two trips to Nantucket on a private jet with my family. This was indeed becoming a dream job.

 

Screenshot 2014-08-22 10.43.30

.

Photographing Myself

Early in the project my client scared and honored me at the same time. He said, “Yes David your going on the wall. I am very grateful to you! You are changing my life.”

Making a self-portrait for this project was certainly a learning experience.

I was honored to be part of the collection and to be considered one of my client’s closest friends – one of the 60. In looking at this image, I see what he he sees in me; his experience of me. I didn’t pull any punches in terms of the detail and treatment. I don’t really see the imperfections in myself. I see the expression in my eyes and the slight gesture of my head. Obviously, I am a photographer and I have a different way of seeing things.