Inception City scapes by Brad Sloan

Brad Sloan is an Oregon-based photographer. His work often involves manipulation of images. The resulting images bring forth phenomena that would have otherwise been overlooked. Sometimes a photograph captures something just right, but sometimes when we manipulate images we can study things that a photograph simply could not have done. This is why I like Sloan’s photography, because it is an exploration of a media without commitment to one style or one method of manipulation. I find this non-commitment healthy, because some methods would be successful in certain scenarios but not in others. Whereas, if he would have stuck to one method all the time, he might be limiting his perception.

Arch2o-Inception City scapes  Brad Sloan (2)

Courtesy of Brad Sloan

His series from a three-day trip to New York City is especially captivating. I have personally been to Manhattan a few times, and I definitely see the city differently when I see Sloan’s photographs.

Arch2o-Inception City scapes  Brad Sloan (10)

Courtesy of Brad Sloan

Manipulate an image can highlight certain characteristics. For example, there is a gain in deciding to have all the photographs in black and white. The monochrome allows the viewer to see things like contrast in texture without the distraction of color. Choosing to reflect the image is also worth mentioning. Perhaps it’s the fact that seeing double of the angularity or geometric repetition makes the viewer see it more clearly.

Arch2o-Inception City scapes  Brad Sloan (1)

Courtesy of Brad Sloan

Also, reflecting an image doesn’t always result in the same effect. Sometimes it creates a contrast: you can see a divide down the image between the image and its reflection. At other times, you can barely see where the divide is, which makes you see the homogeneity in the buildings. The reflection creates new shapes as well. A reflected triangle creates a diamond shape. The untouched images themselves are a depiction of the city. The manipulations, then, take those depictions and magnify them.

Arch2o-Inception City scapes  Brad Sloan (11)

Courtesy of Brad Sloan

It is impressive that Sloan’s documentation of one three-day trip is so insightful. Perhaps photography is not the best way to describe this series, renderings would be a more fitting description. There’s something to be said about this method of documentation. Sometimes a drawing or photograph aren’t enough, so a manipulated photograph can be more suitable, and in the process of creating this new image, an artist can make certain discoveries he might not have noticed at the time being. Sometimes, the audience sees things the artist might not have seen, as well.

By Aiysha Alsane

Courtesy of Brad Sloan

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