Gallery of Fine Art Photography - Atlanta GA

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Julieanne Kost: Passenger Seat

October 26, 2016

As a highly sought after speaker and Principal Evangelist at Adobe Systems, Julieanne Kost is always on planes, trains and automobiles heading to the next speaking engagement. Kost’s profession is about teaching other photographers how to marry practical tools, such as Lightroom and Photoshop, to their imaginations to produce enhanced images.
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New Hampshire #0431, 2009

New Hampshire #0431, 2009

It is not surprising that her curious mind would find inspiration in the necessary act of traveling and her creative eye would see the world rushing by in a uniquely photographic way.
The series Passenger Seat uses blur to transform relatively ordinary scenes into magic swirls of color that allude to the transformative side of travel – the kind of journey that takes viewers to a different emotional space, not just the next business meeting.
“We drove all day looking for iconic New England landscapes, and between the small towns, I started taking images out the window of the car. At the end of the day, the images that I had made ‘in between’ were the images that resonated with me. I found myself capturing a distinct yet ephemeral moment that was not entirely apparent or observable when the image was made, yet these photographs conveyed the mood, colors, and transient notion of fall better than anything that I had mindfully composed,” Kost said.
Maine #0648, 2009

Maine #0648, 2009

What is most surprising, coming from a postproduction expert, is that these images were created entirely within the camera. Kost did not use software to create this effect.
“The basic premise for capturing these photos was fairly simple. Because all the images were taken while moving forward in some type of vehicle, I slowed down the shutter speed and then panned the camera, trying to stay focused on my subject as the vehicle drove by. As a result, the subject would be in focus, while everything around it would be enveloped in blur,” Kost explained.
The unpredictability of photographs like, New Hampshire, #0431, 2009 or Maine #0648, 2009 reveals colors that zig in energetic swaths of movement like a tennis racquet slicing through the air.
“Although creating movement while the camera’s shutter is open seems straightforward, the variations of motion blur that result are as endless as your choice of motion. I panned the camera with elements in the landscape, with a slow shutter speed the result was that the subject is seen as being motionless while its surroundings are in motion.”
This technique taps nicely into the idea of fall as a transitional season, when nature prepares to sleep through the long winter after one final rush of color and beauty. After her initial trip through New England, Kost began applying this principle to places as diverse as Iceland, Poland, Maine, Vermont, New York, and Virginia, among others.
Kost’s ability to straddle the worlds of technology and art came in part from her parents. Her father was an engineer who studied why systems fail, and her mother was a multi-disciplined artist. Like many people of her generation, Kost learned photography from her dad when he converted their laundry room into a dark room.
“The one thing that I really am grateful for from my parents is that I not only had to master the creative side but also the technical side of whatever it was I wanted to achieve,” Kost said.“I kind of feel like I am Cinderella, I have to know all the technology before I can go to the dance of creativity.”
Passenger Seat transports Kost and the viewer to the season’s most vibrant ball.
To see more of Kost’s work visit her Lumière artist page.
Posted in: a Deeper Look

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