SHORELINE MEDITATIONS: DAN TREE
OPENING RECEPTION : JULY 28, 6-8 PM | ON VIEW : JULY 28 - SEPTEMBER 9
It usually starts at the edge of my vision. I notice a burst of color from somewhere unexpected. The character of the light shining through rain on my windshield. An old Mylar balloon caught in a tree branch, forgotten and faded from red to dull pink. A brightly painted chair sitting on the porch of a long-abandoned house. I give these moments my full attention and try to capture the beauty I find in scenes that most people would overlook.
When people learn you’re a photographer, they often ask what you photograph.
My answer is typically “everything.” Portraits and landscapes. Macro photos of spring bursting from the ground. Skeletal trees in winter. The final leaves fallen to the ground. Eventually, my photographs of “everything” begin gaining a life of their own. A group of images shines brighter than the others and begin to coalesce into a series. Sometimes the birth of a series is more intentional. Shoreline Meditations is a collection of abstractions I discovered on the shore of the Great Salt Lake, captured on film and printed in the darkroom. I have been exploring the Great Salt Lake for a decade. For a long time, I took photographs looking out towards the water. When my son was three, I began taking him with me to the lake, and while watching over him, I began to see an entire world at my feet.
The lakeside negative that caught my eye first was a simple composition: three stones and a branch half buried in the salt-crusted shoreline. The arrangement is humble. Zen. I knew it was something special. I started going out to the shore with intent, camera in hand, to see if I could find more of these moments. I have
now been discovering them for five years. The process of seeking and finding has become a quiet refuge, a place to be alone with my thoughts. Some days I go out and don’t capture a single image; it’s usually when I’m trying too hard. I am most likely to find images of calm in a turbulent world when I allow them to find me. For me, this series has become even more compelling, timely, and significant as the shore of the Great Salt Lake recedes ever further. I am excited to share my vision with the world.