“Afterlife, I think I saw what happens next
It was just a glimpse of you
Like looking through a window
Or a shallow sea
Could you see me?
And after all this time
It's like nothing else we used to know…”
Afterlife - Win Butler, Arcade Fire
Have you ever tried to look down through (nominally) clear water and only been able to see a few inches beneath the surface because of the reflected light? Or have you ever been frustrated by reflections when trying to look through glass? You want to get a glimpse of the inside of a shop or restaurant and can’t quite see what you’re looking for because it’s too bright outside.
We spend a lot of time looking through glass. We use our smartphones and computers to communicate with others, to read and learn, to shop, to (vicariously?) live our lives. And while we can experience great and beautiful things this way, there’s also something missing. Experiences like this are by nature incomplete, and not quite real. We miss human contact, and small, simple things such as hearing someone's voice in a room and looking someone in the eyes. We may see a photo of a beautiful, cliffside ocean view, but miss the whole experience of standing by the ocean smelling the sea, hearing the shush of waves moving in and out, and feeling the wind and sunshine on our faces.
And that, in a nutshell is what my digital work is about. It’s why I create it the way I do, and choose the print medium that I choose. It’s about our incomplete experience of a certain, but limited beauty behind glass. It’s about trying to add back a layer of missing experience to the images I create, and attempting to remind myself and everyone who experiences my work to get out and live the fullness of the lives we’ve been given.