La petite fleur sauvage au ton écarlate qui vient encore parfois égayer nos champs de blé à l'aube de l’été symbolise la fécondité et l’espérance. Elle s'illustre dans l'une des plus célèbres comptines de France, s'affiche à la boutonnière des Britanniques le jour du Souvenir. Elle a inspiré artistes et poètes (Claude Monet, Mouloudji...). La jeune photographe française Alyson Colin lui consacre 10 de ses plus jolies photos de l’été. Découvrez-les sur son site. Un instant de pur plaisir à ne pas manquer!
Trouvé is an American magazine with a French name.
The intriguing title certainly gives the magazine this distinctive appeal sought by a typical modern indie publication. A foreign word often brings an extra dimension to a concept. Trouvé means "found". Amanda Marko, the editor and publisher of Trouvé, says that the magazine is aimed at "celebrating the creative lifestyle and those who live it. There are stories and beautiful pictures in everyone's life; they just need to be found and told." In the French language, "trouvé" defines the quiet joy of discovering unexpected things in unexpected places, illustrating perfectly the purpose of the magazine. Languages enrich each other, creativity has no boundaries.
The look and feel of the magazine will welcome you at first sight: coated paper, very elegant cover, huge half-toned photographs, plenty of white space to let the texts breathe and exude the strength of the thoughts they contain. Texts and photographs are working in harmony. There are quotes like pauses in music, thoughts and reflections, and recipes and techniques shared like little secrets.
Trouvé is true to his intention. The creatives individuals you will met through the pages are, for the most part, humble -almost shy- people, expressing themselves quietly. They are are happy people having chosen their lives or followed the paths opened to them. They could be you. All stories are inspired and beautifully written. The interviews are conducted with an equal respect for the creation and the creators, gently letting the readers desire to go further.
Each volume evolved around a different theme. It's no surprise that the first issue was about Beginnings. "Because a beginning is the challenging place, the dreaming place, the anything-is-possible place", Beth Ables writes in the Introduction."...Like a seed sprouting, like a day dawning, beginning is about letting something go ad cutting ties and taking the leap. It cracks open, hunches over, reaches out of the dark earth and up into the light. Into the what-will-be".
The second volume was built around Creating with intention. "We all create for a reason. No matter the cause or event that sparks that interest or draws out that passion, there is purpose and intention behind the process and the art itself..." Amanda Marko writes in her editorial. The stories told in this volume let us go deeply into the arcane of creation.
The latest volume is about Balance, the holy grail of modern times, this form of happiness we all pursue. Balance in life, balance in space, balance within the creative thinking and process. The balance found by the artists and makers featured here is multifaceted. There is no easy path but attainable one, different for each person. Balance demands patience and persistence, and humility to admit imperfection.
Immerse yourself in the latest issue of Trouvé this summer. It is probably the most achieved, the one that would give you pleasure, enrichment and a renewed energy to pursue your fulfillment of a life truly your own.
Creativity is not the finding of a thing, but the making of something out of it after it is found.
— James Russel Lowell
It's such a magic moment when lit-up windows reveal glimpses of hidden lives! They write into my imagination the first lines of a story. I would fill up my dreams with more... till morning.
Fine Art Photographer Kelly Dunn knows how to be in the right place at the right time when Nature creates itself, bursting into full glory. Through his lens, secret stories are revealed to our own delight, sparking our imagination even more. His quest for these magic moments led him to the Painted Trees of Hawaii. Mighty, beautiful, and endangered.
Kelly, could you describe your path to becoming a photographer?
When I was young I remember my parents had an old "Brownie" camera. It was old and didn't work but I took it apart, marveled at the purpose of the lens and the film inside the box. I thought about how much a camera was like our eyes and our brain. We see something with our eyes and then it is stored in our brain much the same way a camera operates. Years later I bought a Polaroid camera. I had a lot of fun with that camera. To see the film develop before my eyes was pure magic. I still have a few of those photos and I'm surprised they didn't fade into black.
My first professional camera was a 35 mm Fujica. My brother brought it home from one of his Asian tours of duty during his time in the Navy. The thing I liked about film was the special look of the black & white photos. They have a depth and quality that you don't get with color photos. I have many great memories of that camera and I thank my brother Joel for giving me this great gift. I have no idea where this camera could be today...
Over the years I had become enamored with video production. I worked my way up the ranks and eventually began producing my own television shows on cable television in 2009. I still use many of the ideas from those experiences in my photo sessions today.
In 2007 I began to do website development work. It was then not uncommon to “borrow” photos from other websites and use them in your own. Fortunately, as the Internet matured, the practice of borrowing online images was becoming a legal liability. One day a client, a doctor, scheduled a meeting at his office. The doctor asked me if I would be interested in creating a new website for his spa business. Before I could say anything he made it clear that I had to obtain full permission from the model for each and every image on the website. He was upset that he had been sued for copyright infringement for illegal use of images on his web pages. The prior website company had copied images of spa models from other websites and used them on the doctor’s website. I assured him that I would never use any images that I didn't take and would have a model release for each image. He was satisfied and we signed a contract. I walked out the door feeling great. What I didn't tell the doctor was that I didn't own a camera... As I drove to the local camera store to buy a camera -I bought a digital Sony Mavica- I was thinking how hard it could be to shoot models. The next week a spa model showed up at my offices and thus began my foray into professional photography!
Over the months and years my shots were looking better and more refined. By 2010 I was doing photography full-time.
Nature is at the heart of your inspiration. Does growing up and living in Michigan has influenced your way to approach Nature?
After my divorce I had lots of free time. I'm not one to sit around so I would drive around the state of Michigan. As I drove through the back roads, marveling at all these beautiful trees and flowers, I began to feel reconnected to Nature. I had a computer company and it required many hours sitting at a desk. Soon all the great memories that we had as a family going on vacations and state parks came back to my mind. Bloomer State Park holds some of the best memories of when I was young. I remember walking along the Clinton River and enjoying all the trees in full bloom. My computer business growing, I lost contact with the outside world. I opened old photo albums that showed all the different places our family had visited over the years. In each image I could see how happy we were just to be young and sitting in a field of grass. It was almost too simple to believe but those feelings have a way of fading with the passage of time. When I pick up my camera I want to capture the essence of those youthful times.
Michigan is a peninsula. It means the State is surrounded on three sides by fresh water. The Great Lakes are huge and like no others on the planet. You could spend one lifetime just visiting all the places along the shores of Michigan. It is a unique experience as each city, park and the people who live there are different.
Holland, Michigan is much like visiting Holland in Europe. The yearly Tulip Festival is an amazing event. Beginning in May millions of tulips begin to bloom within the city and the surrounding hills. It's an explosion of color that one can never forget. The tulips surround the huge Dutch windmills that seem to touch the sky.
On the eastern side of Michigan, in the Lexington and Port Sanilac area, you can walk on the white boulder pier of Lexington for a long way out into Lake Michigan. At the end of the pier you get a wonderful look of the beaches lined with huge maple trees.
It's just a different vibration to my senses. Many of my friends who visit Michigan are surprised how large and how green the State it is. The four seasons here are much like a diamond with four sides. Each season is a different side of the diamond and yet you are in the same place. Each season brings with it a uniqueness that only nature can provide.
To get people to see the world with new eyes is what trigger the inspiration, to see the shot before you take the shot is the real magic. After seeing the shot in my mind its a matter of getting the camera to capture what I see. Michigan will always have a special place in my heart and my photography.
Does your background as a musician and songwriter play a role in your work as a photographer?
Yes! I have always loved playing my guitar, song writing, poetry and prose writing. I played for many years in professional bands.
When I am outside, I see nature as a song. Each group of trees, the spattering of flowers in the field to me are like musicians in an orchestra, each playing their own part of the song. I find peace in the dance between music and nature. It makes sense to me.
I feel there must be an emotional connection for anything in the world to work. During the past the few years I've noticed a much bigger viewer reaction when I began adding a title and short prose or poem to my prints. Words have always come to me easily and I look forward to writing a new caption to each of my new prints. When a print is selected to be released the first thing I do is sit down and recall the feelings I had at the moment I took the shot. I get lost in the image and I feel the words jump out of me from within and I begin to write. My past song writing process dovetails nicely into my photography career. The years I spent as a song writer have helped me have a command of the language of Love, find beauty in everyday living and bring it to life with words. I believe we each bring different talents to the big table of life. I seem to have an ability to bring an emotional connection to the viewer and the reader of my words. Although I never achieved the success I had hoped as a song writer, the discipline has now come into play with my photography. The words swirling around in my mind I apply to my photography help create the emotional connection people are seeking.
Was there an "Aha" moment when you knew you wanted to focus on fine arts photography?
That would be "Purple Forest" in 2009. This shot was truly my first "moment in time" experience. When people saw this print they began to call and write to me asking many questions. People would tell me the story they see in the image as if they were playing out the scenes in their minds. At that moment i felt that, through a single image, I could spark these thoughts and emotions in the viewer. It was a wonderful experience that will stay with me forever.
The Purple Forest print taught me also to become even more focused while looking at the world around me. The story on how I got the shot was funny, well it's funnier today! I was out on the frozen lake in Northern Michigan. I was looking for something to shoot that day when I noticed the trees along the shoreline. The sun was just setting in the West to my right side. I knew right away that this was the shot. As soon as I began to shoot the ice began to break under my feet. Suddenly, I fell through the ice into the cold water below. The ice up to my knees, I panicked and threw my camera onto the snow bank as I didn't want to lose the photos. The ice kept breaking as I made my way back to the shore. By the time I got to the shoreline I was freezing. I made it home and everything worked out alright. So really there were two "Aha" moments that day, one was the Purple Forest shot and the other, a lesson: never go walking alone on a frozen lake!
Have you had any mentor or people who have influenced you along the way?
My parents are at the top of my list! They have always been big supporters of whatever I wanted to do. Without their support over the years I don't see how anything could have happened. They have stood behind all my ventures throughout my life. I'm sure they questioned some of my decisions but at the end of the day they were always there to lend their support. It means the world to me that they are still here to see some of my successes after many years.
Of course many key people have come and gone throughout my life. Norma Goldman was my mentor during my college days studying to become an attorney. Norma was a professor at Wayne State University, a scholar, author of universally reputed Latin books. She told me that Law was not for me, that my talents were elsewhere. I struggled with that for a while because I genuinely wanted to be an attorney. Over time she gently guided me away. She exposed me to worlds that I had no idea existed. She kept telling me that I was a Renaissance man. Norma and her husband Bernard would invite me to their home. Both of them would tell me in a matter-of-fact voice that I was going to do well in the Arts.
Timothy G. Cocciolone, the owner of the Angier Creative Arts Centre in Angier, North Carolina. We were neighbors growing up in Madison Heights, Michigan. I would call him whenever I was ready to upgrade my equipment and ask him a thousand questions. And he would patiently answer each question in detail. I still call on him from time to time to ask questions about cameras and other related topics.
William Roger Cummings of Palm Beach, Florida has been a great mentor for business advice and friendship. He has taught me how to be a great negotiator and how to seal the deal. A few years ago he introduced himself at one of my "Meet n Greet" shows at Starbucks Coffee in West Palm Beach, Florida. His confidence, honesty and his business successes are contagious.
Over in Hawaii I am very thankful to Mark Hanna for his generous time and support of my art. He invited me into the world of art galleries. He ordered seventy-two of my prints to be displayed on Alll Drive in Kailua-Kona. He spent time with me sharing his business experience regarding art and art collectors. He taught me about lighting, mounting and how to showcase prints to get the maximum exposure for the viewer.
The National Geographic Traveler contest put you under the global spotlight. How did you live the experience?
Truly an unexpected moment! I don't usually go out of my way to photograph animals and birds. This was a great time in my life as the Snow Owl image truly did go viral around the world. I took great pleasure at listening and reading the posts about the Snow Owl image. The biggest surprise for me came from Hawaii. When I showed the Snow Owl print to the local people there was an immediate and enthusiastic reaction. I discovered that the Hawaiians see the owl as a spiritual symbol and full of wisdom.
The Snow Owl shot is a lesson in persistence. It's an important lesson on just getting out in the world and shooting. To make a plan, arrive at the destination and just be in the moment. I was in Portsmouth, New Hampshire on the coast of the Atlantic Ocean. The temperature was around 45 degrees below zero and the wind was blowing hard. My plan for this particular morning was to capture a winter sunrise. The weather just wasn't participating in my plans and the sun never appeared. The sky looked like the color of mushroom soup. I figured this was a lost morning, so I packed up my gear and began walking to my car. As I was walking along the shoreline of the Atlantic Ocean I looked up and right in front of me was this snow owl sitting on a branch of an old tree. I thought since I'm here I may as well set up my equipment and capture a few shots. The snow owl looked tired and didn't make any effort to fly away. He would slowly open his eyes and look down at me, then go back to sleep. I was surprised at the size of the owl.
Actually I had forgotten about the snow owl shots until months later. I had received an email from photographer Peter Lik, asking photographers to submit their nature and animal images to the 2014 National Geographic Photo Contest. Peter Lik mentioned that he had entered three images into the contest. Usually, I am not a fan of contests, but since Peter had entered his work I decided to submit one of my images to the National Geographic Photo Contest. If it had not been for Peter's email, I may have forgotten the snow owl. I went through my portfolio of images that looked like a National Geographic type image. I found the snow owl shot and knew right away this image would fit in with the other photo entries I had seen on their website. My initial thoughts were that I would garner more online traffic to my website. Within a week of submitting the photo it was obvious to me that this was becoming a very special moment. People from around the world were voting for the Snow Owl. Although I didn't win the grand prize I did get the most online votes. I am sure that the Snow Owl will be one of my signature prints for the rest of my life...
Talking Nature and Art... You define yourself has a Fine Art Photographer. What does it mean to you?
A great question! The word "Fine Art Photography" has come a long way since the 1900s but in many ways it is still the same. Many people misunderstand the term "Fine Art Photographer" or "Fine Art Photography". Today people believe it is just a fancy title in the hope it will help sell more prints. Fine Art Photography stands apart from newspaper photos, portrait photos and scientific images. It's really two concepts. The first is that the goal of the fine art photographer is to create an aesthetically pleasing experience for the viewer, to show the world in a stylized or conceptual way. I believe my approach to photography is much the same way. I visualize the shot first and the camera is the tool I use to capture it. The second concept and the other origin of the term is how the photography prints are actually displayed. Originally, a series of small photographs were pinned to sheets of plywood at exhibits, shows and galleries. This is how the term " Fine Art Photography" was born. This is what distinguished fine art photography from other categories such as photojournalism and scientific pictures.
When I prepare to do an exhibit I keep in mind the original idea of fine art photography. Today I display my prints using a combination of magnets and foam core. Back in November I had a show at the Emagine Theatre in Royal Oak, Michigan, and I was in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii in December of 2014 for a two-day exhibit at the Marriott. Many people asked me why I didn't have the prints framed or permanently mounted to a board. It was a great opportunity to tell the story of the simple beginnings of Fine Art Photography. My exhibits are giving a nod to the early days of fine art photography but with a twist using modern materials. Today, the photos are usually much larger in size and unlike in the 1900s, photographs are printed on paper, canvas, metal...
When and how did you fall in love with the Painted Trees of Hawaii?
I was shocked the first time I saw a Painted Tree. These trees are like no other trees I've ever seen. I've been going to Hawaii for many years as I own property on the Big Island. Over the years while visiting the islands of Hawaii I made sure to seek these trees out and spend time with them. I'm still puzzled at the reason why the bark on the trees has such a unique look. I cannot believe how large and colorful they are compared to other trees. The banyan trees are very large but they don't have the depth of color of the painted trees.
The close-up shots of my prints feel very much like modern art. I am often asked: “Did you paint the trees”? Or “Who painted these trees?”
It took me a year to research the history of the trees and how they made their way to the islands. I created a map with all the known locations of the painted trees. I spent the entire month of December 2014 photographing the trees around the Big Island. It was during this last visit that I noticed that many of the trees I had seen on my previous visits had been cut down and not replaced. I asked the locals why the trees were disappearing. Many people I met would tell me that they felt the trees were a nuisance. They didn’t like cleaning up the bark that sheds and falls onto the grass below.
By the end of this trip, my passion for these trees had grown even more. I felt that there needed to be more awareness about the painted trees and their future.
You are moving to Hawaii in a few weeks. Do the Painted Trees have something to do with it?
Yes! I feel so passionate about this that I am relocating my offices from Michigan to Hawaii. I’m leaving on June 30th and from there the mission will begin. I’m packed and ready to go!
I have many projects in the works, all focused on these exotic trees. I have created a non-profit organization, "Painted Trees of Hawaii". The organization became official on March 2nd, 2015. As of April 2nd we became a tax-exempt foundation which means all charitable donations are tax deductible. This is such a huge adventure! I'm moving to Kailua-Kona, Hawaii to open an office and begin work on this project. Once I am settled in we will have a news conference and will reveal more details at that time.
This is a huge leap of faith but it’s truly my calling to help educate, promote and secure the future of the Painted Trees of Hawaii!
Thank you Kelly for taking the time to meet with us today. Good luck and see you soon in Hawaii!
I am honored to be here today!
Note: A selection of Kelly Dunn’s work on the Painted Trees of Hawaii - sixteen prints in total - will be displayed during the months of June, July and August 2015, in the main section of the Oxford Public Library, Oxford, Michigan.