OTHER SHORT ARTICLES AND EVENTS
2015 THE PRINT ATELIER
Guest Curator Selection from Future Imperfect. "As part of the Guest Curator series, The Print Atelier invites a creative, collector or taste-maker to curate an exclusive collection of photographs from the gallery. This month’s new guest curator, the acclaimed Hollywood “Revenge” and “PanAm” actress, and the spokesperson for Art Fair Papier in Canada, Karine Vanasse."
Editor's Pick SeaLife series selected and published as Jim Casper's "Editor's Pick".
Interview with Greg Osaba Short video interview on Cortes Island about the Hibernus series with Hollyhock’s Greg Osoba.
2014 VANCOUVER ART GALLERY ART AUCTION
Work from the series Future Imperfect appears at auction. “Art can move hearts, souls, beliefs and understanding. Art Auction 2014 hopes to move you to help the Vancouver Art Gallery raise $1 million dollars in support of exhibitions and educational programs at the Gallery. Through the tremendous generosity of distinguished artists, private galleries and top collectors across Canada and the world, Art Auction 2014 is presenting more than 70 outstanding works of art. Inside the Gallery after dark, Art Auction 2014 will begin with an exclusive cocktail reception and live auction at 6pm, patrons will then enjoy a lavish three course feast prepared by Vancouver`s fine dining aficionado, David Hawksworth, accompanied by flowing Mission Hill wines. A silent auction will run throughout the night, and the evening will conclude with a treat of chocolates and whiskey. It’s sure to be a night to remember! Art Auction 2014 Honorary Chair Michael O’Brian, Co-Chairs Lisa Turner and Bruce Munro Wright, with Vancouver Art Gallery Director, Kathleen Bartels, hope that you will join us in support of exhibitions and education programs at the Vancouver Art Gallery, at Art Auction 2014.”
2013 APPLIED ARTS MAGAZINE - award winning work published. Commercial work for Telus
2012 APPLIED ARTS MAGAZINE - award winning work published. Commercial work for Petcurean
2012 COMMUNICATION ARTS - award winning work published. Commercial work for Petcurean.
2012 WASHINGTON STATE MAGAZINE - Salish Sea portfolio
2012 PHOTOLIFE - Newsblog Feature, Hibernus Exhibition in Toronto
2012 FADED AND BLURRED - Between The Extremes - career commentary by Nicole Rae
2012 NOW MAGAZINE - Critic's Pick, Upcoming Exhibitions (for Hibernus), Toronto 2012 SHOTS Magazine - Work from SeaLife in the Earth, Air, Fire, Water Issue, Spring Edition #115.
2012 SAD MAG - featured SeaLife centerfold (!), Issue #10, Vanimaux - Food, Fur + Foraging.
2012 MUYBRIDGE'S HORSE (featuring artists who are interested in the ways in which humans interact with and experience animals and nature) - featured photographs from Evidence.
2011 UNLESS YOU WILL Magazine
Featured Photographer with Hibernus portfolio, Issue 19 by Heidi Romano Time is elastic. My head is in the clouds and I have misplaced my reality. Time is a trixter - it passes too slowly, or not fast enough. Other days you hardly notice it. Time is cheeky and unpredictable and pure spontaneity is eternal infinity. Every anniversary reminds me to stop, take a look around, to the back, the now, and what else I'd like to achieve It is our second anniversary and I am very excited to be sharing the issue with Fabio Severo all the way from Rome. In June we decided we wanted to share the work of artists working with alternative methods in photography. While this was a challenging issue to put together we have chosen once again 10 wondrous artists working with old cameras or printing methods. Photographic achievements can not be measured in precise measurements, but the work of these artists is polished, refined, sophisticated and you can find grace at the heart of them all. Without further ado, may we present the work of: Binh Danh, Beth Dow, Curtis Wehrfritz, David Ellingsen, Galina Kurlat, Jesseca Ferguson, Lisa Elmaleh, Oliver Möst, Artur Kowallick, Sylvia Ballhause.
2011 PHOTOZOOM, May issue - Featured Photographer
When did you first become interested in photography? I was about 27 or so and took a few evening classes at the local college and joined a darkroom club. I didn’t consider it as a career until 2 years later.
What was it that caught your eye? The process…the technical and artistic marriage, careful planning, consideration and a beautiful print. What was your first camera? I don’t remember the make or model…but it was pretty bad. What camera(s) do you own currently? Canon 1Ds Mark 3 Canon 5D Linhof 4x5 Hasselblad 501 5x7 Conley for wet plate collodion Speed Graphic 4x5 What equipment do you shoot with? See above + lots of rental gear. What type of photography do you prefer? Exactly what I’m doing…advertising, portraiture and fine art. How does your photography get into the publics eye? Marketing tools include my websites, visual email promos, press releases, phone calls, portfolios couriered out, gallery exhibitions and social media. Can you recall the first photo you took that made you go WOW! Four drag queens in a stairwell just before I finished school….the first time my thoughts appeared on film was a rush. Where is your favourite place to live and work in the world and why? (Now or in the future) I’m pretty happy right now with Vancouver and Cortes Island. I think I’ll be heading more often to Toronto as well. Do you like to talk about yourself or your photos? Yes, I’m very comfortable discussing myself and my work. What does photography mean to you? It means being able to live a dynamic and fascinating life surrounded by creative people, my friends and my family. What has been the biggest single obstacle against growing as a photographer? Not enough hours in the day. Who are your influences? Sarah Moon, Richard Avedon, Annie Leibovitz, Michael Kenna How does your personality change when you look through the camera? I don’t think it does. How technical is your photography? I would say it’s middle of the road in that department…although these days we are all technicians to some degree. Have you ever thought about or actually stopped doing photography? Yes…for about 1 second. How would you describe your attention span? I have endless attention and patience when it comes to photography. Do you ever have photographers block? No block, just an appreciation for the importance of both the busy and slow times in a career. How do you describe your photographic style? How do you feel about missed shots that just can’t be recreated? I do exhaustive pre-production for my commercial work so in that context, it doesn’t happen. Or at least I cannot remember the last time it did… I also do a lot of planning for my fine art work so missed shots do not usually occur, but I am completely at home with the creative process, which includes a great deal of patience. Finish this statement… “I think I am happiest when…” I’m making a beautiful print. Where do you want your photography to go in the future? Really, continuing in the direction I’m going is pretty satisfying…more great assignments from clients and more exhibition opportunities are all in the pipe. How did you get interested in photography? As I was heading towards 30 I became was dissatisfied with the work I was doing. I moved to a new city, did a lot of soul-searching and visited a great career counselor…voila. When was your big break in photography? (Have you got it yet?) I don’t know if it’s happened or not. The assignment for BC Place Stadium was pretty great and the invitation to be one of 30 guest artists from North America at the Lushui International Photography Festival in China was amazing as well. What topic do you enjoy shooting for personal interest? Pretty much the same as my regular work…people and landscapes. Where is your favourite place to shoot? I don’t have one location…although Iona Beach here in Vancouver offers endless possibilities for my photographs. When did you decide to become a photographer? 1999 What are your favourite subjects to photograph? People and landscapes
2010 INSIDE VANCOUVER (Tourism Vancouver online) - "Vancouverite", Interview, March 30
2010 PHOTOSERVE/PDN ONLINE - "BC Place Stadium for Bold Action - 2010 Winter Olympics" Article, Feb 20 issue.
2009 WOODSTOCK TIMES - Hibernus Exhibition, "Organic Imperfections" Review, Dec 17 issue. By Paul Smart ORGANIC IMPERFECTIONS With all the speed of our being swallowed by the current digital age, it's easy to forget much of what's being lost these days. Galerie BMG's current exhibition through January 11, "Hibernus...a winter study" by Canadian photographer, David Ellingsen, utilizes what was once one of the prime materials for certain specialized visual artists...Polaroid film. Stuff's gone now, like the warmth of recordings released on vinyl, or 16mm film screenings with the projector rattling and the dust motes dancing in a stream of near liquid narrative light. Like Brownie snapshots or hand-written letters, for that matter. Remember aerograms? For the current show's series of richly textured and mystery-evoking floral works, Ellingsen has collected natural plants during the final stages of their being and then used an archaic Polaroid 55PN film, as fine-grained, textured and rich with organic imperfections as the collection it's being used to capture, to make it lasting art. Talk about two eras ending, and an artist's use of his tools, his means, to comment on his subject matter, the end. Or vice-versa. The resulting photographs, created in-studio and hand-processed in the darkroom, are solarized during the development process and printed to archival, museum exhibition standards. The results speak to what the artist has referred to as his lifelong ambition to find a way of combining the elements inherent in his boyhood on a communal island north in British Columbia, where he learned to appreciate the juxtaposition of seemingly oddly matched elements, from water and ice and nature versus technology to the rural and urban he now sees coming together in his adopted city. Or these lively new floral works about the natural process of death and decay. The Vancouver-based photographer has augmented a strong career in commercial and editorial work with a burgeoning fine art career that has seen his works appear in numerous solo and group museum and gallery exhibitions, and win awards and prizes from a variety of organizations including the International Photography Awards in Los Angeles, Black & White Magazine in San Francisco, PX3 in Paris and Applied Arts in Toronto.
2009 CHRONOGRAM - "Dying Breed", Hibernus Exhibition Review, December issue. 2009 MATRIX - "Body of Text" Review, November issue.
2009 BROKEN PENCIL - "Body of Text" Review, August issue.
2009 BE MAGAZINE - "Quit or Commit", Interview, July Issue.
2009 AVA LIVING "David Ellingsen: Photography at it's finest", Interview, June Issue. By Ehren Seeland Award-winning commercial and fine art photographer David Ellingsen has had a love of photography that has spanned well over 2 decades. In 1986, David moved from his rural organic farming home on Cortes Island, British Columbia, Canada in order to extend his travel and photography education in Victoria, British Columbia, North and Central America, South East Asia, the United Kingdom, and finally, his current hometown of Vancouver, British Columbia. David’s passion for photography is evident in his large format, hand printed fine art prints, as well as in his clean and contemporary commercial and advertising work that has attracted a growing client list that includes: New York Times Magazine, Men’s Health, People, Marie Claire, Globe & Mail, CNN, CBC Canada, DDB, David Suzuki, John Fluevog, and Mattel, among others. David Ellingsen speaks with Ava Living: Ava Living: You use 4x5 film stock in your commercial and fine art work. I love the rawness and imperfections of the edges of the image with this film that is juxtaposed so beautifully with your rich, pristine images. Can discuss this medium and why you choose to use it when creating your work? David Ellingsen: I have used this film for ages and know it well. I chose this film for my work for it's mix of the perfect and imperfect, as you point out. Additionally, I find the immediacy with this film exciting and that it’s use helps to promote a dialogue in the studio between subject, photographer, and materials as the shoot progresses. Sadly, this is a Polaroid film and is now out of production — my last 50 sheets are waiting for the right project. AL: With digital photography currently being the industry standard for a lot of photography work due to its flexibility and cost, what do you feel are the benefits to working with film over digital? Is it a matter of personal aesthetics or do you feel that the quality is different/better with film? DE: I think it's a matter of personal aesthetics and preferred workflow. I do not feel one is better or worse; just different media with different qualities. Simply one more choice in the long list of decisions when creating a photograph. AL: Your "Hibernus” series of botanical studies are delicate and haunting, partly due to the fact that some of the final prints appear to be solarized. Can you speak about your process for this series? DE: This series was shot in the studio during the course of one day. The negatives are indeed solarized. 17 seconds into the development phase I opened the protective sleeve, applied one flash from a Canon 503 Speedlight held about two centimeters from the film, then closed the sleeve again, and let the development process complete. AL: In your portrait work, you’ve covered everything from ballet dancers to musicians, and have also done some portrait work with personalities such as David Suzuki and John Fluevog. How was it working with personalities compared with a regular commercial assignment or models? DE: The most apparent difference is the time that you have with your subject. Those who are well-known or accomplished in some manner generally have much less time for a photograph, and I feel that the photographer needs to be very sensitive to this to execute a successful session. Hopefully I’m not tempting fate in adding that, without exception, all of my subjects to date have been very accommodating and pleasant to work with. AL: In your smoking series, your opening image on your website is of a woman that is smoking with a pensive look washed across her face. Was this series meant as a social commentary or was it more of a loose theme that you were interested in? DE: This series, Home Free, was a result of the new smoking bylaws recently enacted here in Vancouver. I realized that pretty soon the only place that a smoker is going to be free to pursue their vice without fines or social scorn is in their home. I thought this would make an interesting series — perhaps a result of my time long ago as a smoker and my consequent sympathies that stem from that. AL: In your athletes series, you have all of these fit and amazing individuals excelling at what they do best, and also included in this section is the series of sports accidents where you show the unfortunate (for the models), but comical cause and effect of a sports mishap. Was this done as a personal project or a contract job? Can you discuss your idea behind this series? DE: It was a personal series photographed for a little portfolio attention, which it got. It was a while ago now, but it combined my athletic interest with a healthy dose of self promotion and dark humor. This body of work is probably saying more about me at the time than anything. AL: Your Pacific fine art series show a very tranquil and poetic personal view of the West Coast of Canada; like these images could be still memories of the happiest times in someone’s life. Can you talk a bit about this series? DE: The Pacific series was a meditation on my relationship with the shore and it’s rejuvenating peace and solitude. This series is a product of my upbringing on Cortes Island that is surrounded by the ocean, and is also the result of a strong influence of Mr. Michael Kenna's work (the original master of the long exposure landscape). This was the first fine art series I photographed, and it was a particularly valuable stepping stone in my career in relation to personal vision and it’s execution, as well as a first glimpse into the Fine Art gallery world and it’s associated business. AL: With the current economic climate, photography, which was already a tough business, is even more competitive than it was before. Many photographers often decide to make a big move to places with large photo centers like New York City and Berlin. Can you discuss your choice to remain in British Columbia and work with the market from Vancouver? What were the benefits to staying in Vancouver rather than finding a larger center to live and work out of? DE: The decision to remain in Vancouver was more personal than professional. I did a lot of traveling around the world in my 20’s and when I began my photography career at the age of 30 I was happy to be here, close to family, friends and the West Coast where I was raised. Additionally, I realized that with photography in these times, you can live anywhere you like and still have a successful career. I don't think any commercial or fine art photographer should identify only on a local basis. It is too limiting regarding the opportunities that are available with the world as your audience and client.
2009 BLACK AND WHITE - Hibernus Portfolio, August issue.
2008 MEADE DESIGN GROUP - Interview, "In conversation with David Ellingsen", May 15 by Iván Meade. Sometimes coincidence works in a very mysterious way. A month ago while I was preparing the Tom Ford blog entry I wanted a black and white photography to add some personality to the imaginary space I was creating. Back then I remembered I saw a beautiful photograph at our local Liberty Store. I went online and I visited Liberty's site and I was introduced to David Ellingsen's photography. Then I went to his website and I was even more impressed with the fact that he had even more beautiful images than the ones I recalled. The scope of his work and the quality of the images is truly throughout his site, and his vision is totally innovative and unique. The next day when I posted the Tom Ford entry, I received a very kind email from David Ellingsen thanking me for including his work in my blog. I wanted to take advantage of the opportunity and asked him to do an interview for my blog. Iván Meade - What was the first photograph you ever took, do you still remember the subject? David Ellingsen - I don't remember my first one...I do remember the first class I took at Camosun College and the addictive quality of the almost magical darkroom process which hooked me. The Victoria darkroom collective I joined right after fueled the process further. Iván - When did you first get started in photography? David - Not until I was 30...a bit of a late bloomer career-wise. My older brother is an accomplished artist, and was from a young age, and I realize that I had subconsciously given him the place as the artist in the family (apparently I thought there was only one spot for that). I did not even consider it myself until I was sliding towards 30 and seriously looking for a fulfilling career. Completely self-imposed situation, but better late than never I suppose. Iván - What is it about photography that interests you as an artist? David - The combination of technical mastery with artistic vision constantly excites me. When both come together in a successful image the sense of elation I feel tells me I'm on the right path. Iván - Have you always worked in photography or have you worked in other mediums as well? David - Only photography so far...although print making and painting are probably on the horizon in some capacity. Iván - What has influenced you and your sense of style? David - My upbringing on a rural farm in Desolation Sound and the tight knit large family definitely had it's effect on me. As a result, appreciation of the natural order of things, solitude and honest inter-personal relations are some of the themes I see in both my Fine Art and Commercial work. Other photographers like Richard Avedon, Sarah Moon and Jean-Paul Goude also are strong influences. Iván - Do you have prefer black and white over colour photographs? David - I feel the choice between B&W or colour is specific to the photograph you are making and consequently do not have a preference. Iván - Where do you draw your inspiration from? David - A close observation of life around me. Iván - Who or what would be your dream subject? David - That's a hard one...and constantly changing...too many to list I think. Right now I'm working towards two series involving the themes of death and mankind's relation to the natural world. Iván - I noticed you are involved with the community and social issues, how important is this to you? David - I think growing up in a small tight knit community you realize the importance of helping others in whatever capacity you can, financially or otherwise, for the greater good. I was raised in a family that would bend over backwards to help each other and the community in general...it seems this has stuck with me in some capacity. Iván - I also noticed your portrait of David Suzuki, how "green" is photography these days? David - On the plus side there are far fewer chemicals going down the drain these days. But the digital revolution has produced a huge amount of waste in itself and the constant need for upgrading equipment and software to stay competitive is frustrating to say the least, financially and environmentally. Iván - If you werent involved in photography, what do you think you would be doing? David - I think I'd probably have my own restaurant/café/etc. I worked in that industry for a long time and really enjoy it...especially the co-workers it seems to attract...a crazy bunch. Iván - What art do you have on your walls? David - Paintings by artists I know personally and lots of my own work. Iván - What is your favourite photograph? David - Of my own work the two "Untitled" Series are particularly satisfying...a real step forward for me in my own artistic journey. Of other photographers I'd have to say Richard Avedon's American West series is probably one of my favorites. Also Joel Peter-Witkin has my great respect for his entire body of work. Iván - Your photographs have a very dream-like quality, do you ever draw inspiration from your dreams? David - Never from dreams. My inspiration comes from a specific idea/concept or the evolution of one through the working process.