Enless List of Photographers that Inspire: Handy Andy Pandy

The Man behind the lens

The Man behind the lens

*yes, I can spell endless.  no, I cannot change it now because the link would be broken FOREVERRRRRR.  I can also spell forever.

Handy Andy Pandy- a photographer guaranteed to take you on a wild adventure. *Disclaimer-I can only guarantee the adventure to be while you look at his work and cannot vouch for a direct invitation from him to take you on an actual-in-person adventure, however, I am fairly confident he would say yes if you invite yourself.

As is becoming the case these days with the [fa]fine art photography Facebook group multiplying like creative infused-hormone breeding mice, I found HAP posting his insane 365 project on the walls of the group.

Handy Andy Pandy collage

Handy Andy Pandy page 2

His work is pure genius.  I can’t even begin to imagine what would happen if I had a moment to crawl inside his ginger-haired mind and look around.  He has more ideas than Montana has snow flakes.

Handy Andy Pandy Thirst Handy Andy Pandy Portraits

Handy Andy Pandy Photography way of life macro lens

From his vivid colors to his stellar use of Photoshop, he is a creator of the utmost sort.  I always thought the British made a good choice shipping those convicts over to Australia  and time and time again, it is proven that they sent the most hilarious and creative felons to procreate and produce future a nation of artistic masterminds.  Most of my favorite artists hail from Oz and Handy Andy Pandy is no exception.

Handy Andy Pandy Newspapers Handy Andy Pandy into another dimension inspired by aaron nace

Aside from being a brilliant artist, he is also a top notch writer.  If you are someone who enjoys wallowing in your own depression, I do not recommend reading his blog or interviews, because you will be catapulted out of your misery within minutes.

But even more exciting is the fact that he has just announced that he will be writing for F Stop Lounge with a weekly column. He is by far one of my favorite writers out there.  I am glued to his posts waiting for his next hysterical interview and highly recommend that you do the same.

Handy Andy Pandy f stop lounge two Handy Andy Pandy F Stop Lounge

Gabe and I are always drawn to other artists who thrive on sharing and collaborating, which is probably why I am so enamored with this crazy man and his work.

In his own words, yes, you’re hearing them here first:  “Reach out to other photographers, say hi, send an email to people whose work you admire. Connect. You’ll find almost everybody is just as friendly as you are, even the ones whose work is so amazing it intimidates you.”

as well as…..

“Andy doesn’t bite and LOVES to meet new people, so say hi!” so visit him on Facebook and tell him Two Creative Birds sent you to say hi! (visit us and say hi while you’re at it.)

Handy Andy Pandy I love lamp

Handy Andy Pandy’s Blog

Handy Andy Pandy’s Portfolio

Handy Andy Pandy’s Google +

Handy Andy Pandy’s Flickr

Who Inspires You? We want to feature artists that you love too!

If you have a photographer that blows you away, send us an email at photographersthatinspire@gmail.com.

Include:

1. Name and links to find the artist.

2. Links you would like us to promote about you so that we can give you credit for finding the artist.

3. Any information you want us to include about why you are inspired by this artist.  (You don’t have to include this, but it may mean a lot to that photographer to know why you thought of them!

The spirit of this project is about being inspired by others and sharing that with the world. So please don’t nominate yourself!  You can always have someone else nominate you if you think you should be on our Photographers that Inspire list! 

Photographers

You can view the original list of  31 Days of Photographers that Inspire! And keep up with our endless list by visiting our Photographers that Inspire table of contents. 

Follow Bonnie and Gabe Two Creative Birds on Facebook or our portrait website at www.twocreativebirds.com and our conceptual photography site at www.bonniealrifai.com. You can see how we do what we do and why we do it on our Framed Episode! 

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How to write an artist statement

The Elephant In The Room BeU Opening Day Image
Artist Statement Writing Exercise
By Gabriel Al-Rifai
The Elephant In The Room BeU Opening Day Image

If your Artists Statement stands between getting in or not getting into a gallery show, but you stand behind your artwork, then use your favorite portfolio piece to guide you.

Think of your Artists Statement as the one piece in your portfolio that you covet the most. You may or may not be openly proud of it. You may have even hated it at certain points during the shoot or while you were editing it, but there’s no doubt that you are proud of it.
Use the Rule of Three.
Begin by choosing one of the following 2 constructions:
A. In 3 well constructed sentences OR,
      (use if you’re not big on long chattery conversations)
B. In 3 eloquently descriptive paragraphs
      (use if you love to talk)
Then, answer each of the following three questions about your favorite image in the construction format you chose above:
1. Why did you make the peice? If you feel like your reason isn’t very poetic, then think of when and why you were attracted to taking your pictures into photoshop. This is your inspiration.
2. What did you originally hope to gain from experimenting with photography and post processing and how has that affected you as a person. i.e. is it therapeutic. Is it a sense of identity. Is it a way to be yourself or be by yourself. This is your motivation.
3. What technical, emotional, and aesthetic attributes do you want people to notice about your favorite piece. What do you want them to feel? This might be your objective or simply the response your art consistently evokes.
Now go back and remove the content that points to your image as the topic and replace it with content that describes you as an artist.
Use this as the framework for your Artist Statement and then do some research and compare. I hope this helps.
-Gabriel Al-Rifai
Like us on Facebook! to keep up with the birds.
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Endless List of Photographers that Inspire: Killy Photography

self

How important is it to understand light when you’re a photographer? According to today’s photographer that inspires, Killy Photography, VERY.

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The ol’ “I’m a natural light” photographer debate.  Not that natural light means you don’t know what you’re doing, but when I was “natural light”…..I didn’t know what on earth I was doing.  The further I got into learning photography, the more light became essential.  Now, even when it’s natural, I’m damn sure trying to control it to my advantage.  Anyone else cringe to look back at your old photos from ye olden days of noviceness?

Probably not Killy.  That’s the first thing I noticed about this portrait guru.  He digs light.  He digs it, he gets it, he uses it, he makes it work for him and it’s unbelievably evident in all of his portraits.  Whether it’s natural light, studio light, iPhone light….Killy is clearly paying attention to his light and if you really take the time to study where he lets it fall, it’s incredibly inspiring.  I know I will be making sure to pay even more attention to what I’m doing…even on my just for fun of the fam shots.

When you look at these images, look deeper than the surface.  Really notice where the light hits his subjects vs. where the shadows are allowed to be.  Notice how he finds light sources in unexpected places. light light 3 light 6

light 4 light7 light5 light2 light 10 light 9 light 8

The other thing that really drew me in to Killy’s work is the expressions he pulls from the soul of his subjects.  I’m sharing more images than normal on this post because I really want you to see the range and diversity of depth that he goes into with each image.  From the light to the expressions, he is giving us an insight to what every single person he immortalizes with this camera is thinking in that moment.  He’s not just giving us a lovely shot to look at.  He’s freezing time in a way that captures these people’s essence.  I don’t have to hear them speak to feel their voice.  I don’t have to know their back story to feel where they are going or where they have been. The expressions he catches aren’t accidental and to understand the art and science that go into such intense photographic storytelling is something we should all strive to learn.

expression Halo House Gala 2013 expression 4 expression 5 expression 6 expression 7 expression 8 expression 10 expression 11 expression 12 expression2

Inspired himself by Richard Avedon who I highly suggest clickin’ the link to see, Killy has started a project to shoot on white backgrounds.  He’s two subjects in…with only 98 to go..and I know I’m going to be following to find out who’s next.

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There’s just something about Killy that reminds me to keep shooting what I want to shoot….not what I have to and to slow down and truly pay attention to every important element and detail.

Killy.  He’s a thinking man’s photographer.

PLEASE for the love of photography go LIKE his Facebook page.  Clearly the man needs to bump that dinky little number up.

The real goods can be found on his website, blog and Flickr. Filled with loads of info on what he uses to light scenes…..you don’t wanna miss that!

Who Inspires You? We want to feature artists that you love too!

If you have a photographer that blows you away, send us an email at photographersthatinspire@gmail.com.

Include:

1. Name and links to find the artist.

2. Links you would like us to promote about you so that we can give you credit for finding the artist.

3. Any information you want us to include about why you are inspired by this artist.  (You don’t have to include this, but it may mean a lot to that photographer to know why you thought of them!

The spirit of this project is about being inspired by others and sharing that with the world. So please don’t nominate yourself!  You can always have someone else nominate you if you think you should be on our Photographers that Inspire list! 

Photographers

You can view the original list of  31 Days of Photographers that Inspire! And keep up with our endless list by visiting our Photographers that Inspire table of contents. 

Follow Bonnie and Gabe Two Creative Birds on Facebook or our portrait website at www.twocreativebirds.com and our conceptual photography site at www.bonniealrifai.com.

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Endless List of Photographers That Inspire: Pecos Hank

17.Dodge-City-Orange-Mammatus

In no particular order: Photographer, Musician, Storm Chaser, Snake Wrangler, Visionary.

This article could be titled, “Endless Inspiration from a Photographer,” but Bonnie says that it will mess with our analytics. As working artists, one of the most enjoyable fruits of our labor is discovering people’s stories. Especially when an acquaintance, whom I knew as the frontman for The Southern Backtones, turns out to also be an established storm chasing, adrenaline gobbling, mucho talented photographer. Fine artist? Hell ya! I’d like to think that Hank Schyma, who’s photography alias is, Pecos Hank, has been living the artist  life since before he was alive. Well, since before I was alive anyways (I think he’s has a few years on me). But given that, it took nearly 30 years for me to gather up the courage and discontinue a career with a suit and tie requirement. And by courage I mean laid-off. As well as my fountain-of-inspiration & wife, Bonnie Al-Rifai, who’s invitation to consider teaming up to make a living as photographers, allowed me to dream while not sleeping. Now that I’m wide awake and facilitated by a build up of unmanaged creativity as well as battery acid-like caffeine), I look forward to meeting photographers with interesting back stories. It’s ironic to get re-acquainted with Hank whom I originally connected with through the Houston music scene, and then to find out that he’s a black-belt natural & un-natural disaster photogrpaher is freagin awesome.

43.HankSchyma-KS-magic-Hour-1
15.HankSchyma-Tail-end-charlieSM

9.-Storm-Hole 35.HankSchyma-funnelswirl.SM_ 17.Dodge-City-Orange-MammatusBonnie & I went to his art show a couple of weeks ago and just like his photography, the “art show” titled, Night Circus”, was really an art explosion of epic proportions. We’re talking, three floors, a stage, and a heavy duty, cable supported, trapeze-like rope, of enchanting oddities that I legally cannot describe further. Ok, everything was perfectly legal, but I’ll just say that you had to have been there . . . . . Mermaids!. . . . that’s the last thing I’ll say.Trip15-Wild-Horses4

Storm-Pony 12.Trans-Pecos-Rat-Snake 1.Western-Diamondback-Rattlesnake stinkbug0186

Check out www.PecosHank.com. In addition to finding truly inspiring photography you’ll also find his refreshingly hilarious BLOG as well as show dates for one of my favorite Houston bands, SouthernBacktones, and other cool stuff.

Who Inspires You? We want to feature artists that you love too!

If you have a photographer that blows you away, send us an email at photographersthatinspire@gmail.com.

Include:

1. Name and links to find the artist.

2. Links you would like us to promote about you so that we can give you credit for finding the artist.

3. Any information you want us to include about why you are inspired by this artist.  (You don’t have to include this, but it may mean a lot to that photographer to know why you thought of them!

The spirit of this project is about being inspired by others and sharing that with the world. So please don’t nominate yourself!  You can always have someone else nominate you if you think you should be on our Photographers that Inspire list! 

Photographers

You can view the original list of  31 Days of Photographers that Inspire! And keep up with our endless list by visiting our Photographers that Inspire table of contents. 

Follow Bonnie and Gabe Two Creative Birds on Facebook or our portrait website at www.twocreativebirds.com and our conceptual photography site at www.bonniealrifai.com.

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Endless List of Photographers That Inspire: Kristin Villano

Unrooted

Dreamer,  Storyteller, Artist

With these being the three words that Denver Portrait/Fine Art Photographer Kristin Villano uses to describe herself it’s no wonder I was immediately drawn to her work.  I connect with those three words completely myself and I’ve recently been thinking a lot about what words to use to describe my work and have been challenging other photographers to find the words that they relate to most.

Kristin is DEFINITELY a storyteller.  I will never forget the first time I saw this image.

UnrootedI still get goosebumps getting lost in this masterpiece.  Everything about it speaks to me.  I love when an image can not only tell its own story, but is so intriguing that it makes my mind wander to my own stories.

I am in love with her poses, the unique, almost painful angles that beam peace and tranquility from their core.

Like Kristin, I often look to books, stories, songs and poems that I love to become inspired for my work. This image of hers was inspired by a novel written by Charles De Lint   called “Dreams Underfoot.”

Pieces

What strikes me so much is how even with an expression of hopelessness from her models, her lighting and color are filled with hope and imaginative dreaming.

Forgotten

I have loved watching Kristin’s work evolve as she becomes more in tune with her artistic style.  She is another brilliant artist that I discovered in my  [fa] Fine Art Photography Facebook group where I highly recommend other artists who want to connect, learn and grow in a supportive environment join.  We have monthly contests with some pretty incredible prizes from Zenfolio and Imagenomic.

The Lost Queen The Dream Beyond the storm

Show Kristin some love and support of the beautiful work that she creates by visiting her Blog and Facebook page.

Besides being in love with her work and her spirit, you can find out more about her process and how she thinks as an artist by reading this fantastic interview by Rocio Martinez Gonzalez for the Spotlight For Inspiration weekly feature.  

Who Inspires You? We want to feature artists that you love too!

If you have a photographer that blows you away, send us an email at photographersthatinspire@gmail.com.

Include:

1. Name and links to find the artist.

2. Links you would like us to promote about you so that we can give you credit for finding the artist.

3. Any information you want us to include about why you are inspired by this artist.  (You don’t have to include this, but it may mean a lot to that photographer to know why you thought of them!

The spirit of this project is about being inspired by others and sharing that with the world. So please don’t nominate yourself!  You can always have someone else nominate you if you think you should be on our Photographers that Inspire list! 

Photographers

You can view the original list of  31 Days of Photographers that Inspire! And keep up with our endless list by visiting our Photographers that Inspire table of contents. 

Follow Bonnie and Gabe Two Creative Birds on Facebook or our portrait website at www.twocreativebirds.com and our conceptual photography site at www.bonniealrifai.com.

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I am accomplished because I have a husband who isn’t hindered by what we don’t know how to do- a lesson I could have let fear keep me from learning, but didn’t.

Obsession-Finishedweb

“….But I don’t know how.”

Words that could define me, should define me, kind of do define me……but never stop me.  I think I spent the majority of my life letting them decide my future.  I didn’t play soccer as a kid because I didn’t know how.  I didn’t take up guitar because I didn’t know how.  Can’t speak Spanish….yup, didn’t know how.

Obsession-Finishedweb

The first time that I have ever truly given into my fears of not having a clue what I’m doing and attacking them head on was when I tried out for roller derby without really knowing how to skate…or even truly what roller derby was.  That experience in my life was where I discovered that I had a lot more power over what I can and can’t accomplish than I ever realized.

But it was meeting my husband, Gabe, that really made me put myself into situations where I had absolutely no clue what I was doing and then spend all of my time learning how to do it….and then discovering I was surprisingly good at a lot more things than I ever gave myself credit for.

Gabe has a room full of instruments, a workshop full of tools and a computer full of software.  None of which he has ever “officially learned” how to use, but all of which he has taught himself to create masterpieces with.  I’ve never heard him say, “but I don’t know how.”  I don’t think those words are in his vocabulary. If he doesn’t know how, he dives in learning from whatever sources he can find.

gabe trumpetgabe trumpet 2

When he started learning video, it was like the flood gates of magic had opened for him.  He has an insane ability to see things from an artistic angle and you should probably run away if you see him staring at you for too long…chances are, he’s got a brilliant idea about to emerge and you’ll end up featured in your own full length movie before you know it. But a year ago, he didn’t have the first idea how to begin a video.  His devotion to learning, improving and proving to himself that he can do absolutely anything he wants to do is infectious.

He is the reason I spent 15 years as a photographer without having much clue about what I was doing and the past 4 years learning and refining at every opportunity.  He’s the reason I’m about to start learning to play the trumpet.

I found out through him that if I never tried……I would never know how.

I’m so grateful to him for learning the way he learns and putting together this beautiful episode for The Framed Network that not only covers how we plan an execute our shoots, but also features the most important thing we believe in as photographers…..other photographers. Nothing gives me the desire to create and learn things I never would have learned before as much as learning from and working with other creative people.

Like us on Facebook here:  Bonnie and Gabe on Facebook. Or find more of our work at www.twocreativebirds.com and our fine art site at www.bonniealrifai.com. 

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Endless List of Photographers that Inspire: Tamara Knight Photography

Skazki_na_noch_Mary_Poppins-10

Gabe and I first fell in love with Tamara Knight’s work when we saw her piano series.  Gabe purchased her image because being obsessed with having shot our piano on the beach as well, he was blown away by Tamara’s portraits.

TamaraKnightPhotography_piano_part1-112_upd

Then recently Tamara began posting images from her Bedtime Stories series that she has collaborated with Ma Belle Mademoiselle to create masterpieces that tell our favorite bedtimes stories.   As if Tamara’s work didn’t inspire me enough, I instantly fell in love with the fashionista hats created by Ma Belle Mademoiselle.  You can find her on Etsy here.

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Story telling is what I live for and when I find an artist who does it with as much class and creativity as Tamara, I am instantly inspired to get out and create.

Skazki_na_noch_SnowQueen-301 Skazki_na_noch_SnowQueen-231 Skazki_na_noch_SnowQueen-16_white Skazki_na_noch_Nutcracker-24 Skazki_na_noch_Nutcracker-31 Skazki_na_noch_Nutcracker-35_upd

You can see more from their incredible collaboration in this video!

Gabe and I always try to tell our clients stories with our images and it is clear that Tamara takes that to an even more incredible level.  She creates beautiful stories for her clients that are above and beyond a typical photo shoot.  These are TRULY the sort of memories every child can cherish forever.

Sophia_Motya_piano-20 Sophia_Motya_piano-8 LP_Spread10

Be sure to visit Tamara’s Facebook page to show her some love and appreciation for the beautiful work she is creating!

You can follow her blog here. 

And fall in love with Ma Belle Mademoiselle on her Facebook page and Etsy store.

Who Inspires You? We want to feature artists that you love too!

If you have a photographer that blows you away, send us an email at photographersthatinspire@gmail.com.

Include:

1. Name and links to find the artist.

2. Links you would like us to promote about you so that we can give you credit for finding the artist.

3. Any information you want us to include about why you are inspired by this artist.  (You don’t have to include this, but it may mean a lot to that photographer to know why you thought of them!

The spirit of this project is about being inspired by others and sharing that with the world. So please don’t nominate yourself!  You can always have someone else nominate you if you think you should be on our Photographers that Inspire list! 

Photographers

You can view the original list of  31 Days of Photographers that Inspire! And keep up with our endless list by visiting our Photographers that Inspire table of contents. 

Follow Bonnie and Gabe Two Creative Birds on Facebook or our portrait website at www.twocreativebirds.com and our conceptual photography site at www.bonniealrifai.com.

Posted in Endless list of photographers that inspire
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