Mother Nature is perhaps the greatest artist we have ever seen. She has created the most stunning creatures and landscapes I have ever seen, while also creating the ugliest creatures (cockroaches). She can leave a path of destruction all while creating new life. She is full of contradictions, it seems only fitting that the subject matter I use to depict her creations are also full of juxtapositions. My subjects are unsightly, they smell, and they are man-made eyesores against the landscapes they sit; yet they can also be delicate, unique, and stunningly beautiful. I use dumpsters to create art depicting my favorite creations by Mother Nature. Weathered by time and the elements (both natural and unnatural), dumpsters are hidden gems among the urban landscape that is perpetuating the destruction of Mother Nature.
In my series “The Storm” I was inspired by the magnificent thunderstorms that take place in the south. You can literally watch the blue skies transform from blue to gray to black and then back to blue again over the course of hours or sometimes minutes. Before the rain, the roar of the thunder echoes throughout the sky, shaking the earth to its core. Following the thunderous clamour, as if on cue, streaks of lightning paint the sky. The clouds seem to open and a deluge of rain falls from the sky. And then, just as quickly as it began, the storm rolls out, blue skies emerge leaving traces of the storm behind. Mother Nature’s rage and fury gives way to growth and rebirth, forever altering her landscape.
For my series “The Storm”, I focus on the marks on dumpsters resulting in weathering due to exposure to the elements over time. Sometimes I sought out dumpsters right before and after a storm; other times, I used a squirt bottle filled with water and a paintbrush to recreate the effects of rain. I used over ten different dumpsters to create this series - mostly found in Atlanta, but some were found as far as Oregon.
I enjoy the challenge of finding new dumpsters to photograph as well as the challenges that come with photographing my subject matter such as anthills, broken glass, and people. But the most rewarding part of my work is finding beauty in an object that most people pass by on a daily basis yet hardly ever see. Uncovering a hidden gem on these unsightly - all the while, knowing that certain marks, or even the dumpster itself - can disappear overnight, just like Mother Nature’s creations.
I “paint” images first with my camera and then using editing software, I alter color and remove blemishes that distract from the overall composition. Each photographic image is professionally printed on Hahnemühle William Turner 310 gsm paper, genuine mould-made in both look and feel and is highly archival. The image is then mounted on a museum quality, painted wood panel, varnished, and wired for hanging. In addition to signing, dating, and numbering each piece, you will also receive an image of the original dumpster as well as the story behind the dumpster.