November Member of the Month: David Brandy
Every month, we profile a different Scarborough Arts member. If you’re a member and would like to be profiled, send an email to news AT scarborougharts DOT com for more information.
I am a new member, having joined in May 2014. But I’ve been quite familiar with Scarborough Arts and the Bluffs Gallery for a very long time, having been a resident of Birch Cliff and Cliffside since 1987.
What kind of art do you practice, and how long have you been practicing it?
I am a fine art photographer. I have loved taking pictures ever since I was ten years old and the proud owner of a Kodak Instamatic camera. But it wasn’t until two years ago that I decided to seriously and passionately begin to use the camera as a tool to create fine art.
Tell us about one of the pieces we’re featuring today.
The crazy thing about this image, “Embraced”, is that it wasn’t taken with my digital SLR camera. It was taken with my iPhone 5s camera. I was out with a friend for a Sunday walk along the beaches below the Bluffs, when I almost stepped on this leaf. Thankfully, my eye caught sight of it and when I inspected further, I discovered this amazing diorama of sand and tiny pebbles caught inside a water droplet left behind on top of this leaf. I couldn’t believe my eyes. It was like a photographer’s dream come true – a gift from nature just lying there on the beach. I was yearning for my DSLR camera, but knew I would have to make due with the iPhone’s lens. And this was the result. It’s one of four different shots I managed to get of this unique discovery.
Where is your favourite place in Scarborough to go for inspiration?
Undoubtedly, my favourite place in Scarborough is anywhere along the top of the Bluffs and the beaches below. I’m an Aquarian and I need to be near water for not only inspiration, but my peace of mind and soul. I guess that’s why I moved here in 1987 and why I haven’t been more than a few blocks away from the lake’s edge ever since.
What is the best piece of artistic advice you’ve ever gotten?
From a purely technical point of view, the best advice ever told to me was from a good friend who, upon learning I had just bought an SLR camera, told me the best way to learn how to operate the camera is to always keep the camera in “manual” mode. From an inspirational or artistic standpoint, the best advice for me, the words that I live by as an artist, came from a quote I read attributed to the great photojournalist Dorothea Lang, who said, “The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera.” Lang’s words define my passion for photography, for it’s my intention through every picture I take, to help people to notice the familiar in everyday life in a disquieting way – a way that expands their vision and helps change the way they both see and feel the world around them.
To see more of David’s work, take a look at his online portfolio here, or drop by one of his upcoming shows, as listed below!
- Included as part of a salon show throughout December, along with a number of artists at Yellow House Gallery (921 Kingston Road, Toronto, Ontario).
- Featured as part of a solo show running throughout February 2015 at Figg Street Co. (40 Front Street South, Thorold, Ontario).