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The Process of Abstraction

Lately I have been working with photographs, focussing on the idea of abstraction. I pull out the elements of the representational image that interest me such as colour, line and counterpoint and digitally manipulate these qualities to create an entirely new image. The photograph can be of a simple flower or a building that holds some architectural interest for me or even a sewer grate that has a interesting hue of rust on a rainy day.

Here is an example of the process at work...

The final abstract began with a photograph of a striking stained glass window at the Eldridge Street Synagogue, a national landmark on the Lower East Side in New York City. The synagogue was fully restored in 2010 after many decades of neglect and a monumental new stained-glass window was installed by artist Kiki Smith and architect Deborah Gans. The colour and play of light and depth in the image struck me as key focal points which I tried to capture in the final abstracted image which I call "Homage to Eldridge". You can see the gradual evolution of the image into the final product.

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