Yep.....I'm Graduating

As some of you may know by now I have been going to The Art Institute of Colorado pursuing a degree in photography. I don't usually talk about my student career. I always just want to be known as an artist and who cares if that means I am in school or learning on my own.  I chose to go to formal school for a number of reasons. Access to equipment, learning multiple types of photography and being able to collaborate with a lot of creative people to name a few. It has been a pivotal time in my life.  Being able to focus on and hone a craft that I truly love. 
 

Today I will be submitting my final portfolio for review. Three years worth of work all boiled down into 60 photographs. All of the late nights staring at computer screens. Early mornings scouting locations and countless hours printing work. Every bit of effort over the last few years realized. As I began sorting and assembling my final portfolio for review it gave me a chance to look back at my progress over my time as a student. The one thing I noticed is that I have always had an eye for what I like but maybe not the technical know how to pull it off. So here is a quick little stroll through my early work. Some of these predate school. 

This photograph was a real turning point for me and one of the reasons I decided to return to school. 

This photograph was a real turning point for me and one of the reasons I decided to return to school. 

At the time I made this image I really liked it. Now all I can do is pick it apart. But I do like seeing the origins of my vision in this image. 

At the time I made this image I really liked it. Now all I can do is pick it apart. But I do like seeing the origins of my vision in this image. 

When I made this photograph I was sitting on the shores of Lake Dillon waiting for this exposure to finish, I believe it was a few minutes. Someone on the other side of the lake turned on their trucks headlights. At the time I was well..... a little mad. Until I got home looked at the image away from the irritation of the moment and realized it kind of sucked without it. 

When I made this photograph I was sitting on the shores of Lake Dillon waiting for this exposure to finish, I believe it was a few minutes. Someone on the other side of the lake turned on their trucks headlights. At the time I was well..... a little mad. Until I got home looked at the image away from the irritation of the moment and realized it kind of sucked without it. 

This was the first photograph I made about 30 minutes after I opened a box from B&H containing my first ND filter. A variable filter between 2-8 stops. 

This was the first photograph I made about 30 minutes after I opened a box from B&H containing my first ND filter. A variable filter between 2-8 stops. 

This photograph was in my first show in New York. The Art from the Heart show. July of 2012. 

This photograph was in my first show in New York. The Art from the Heart show. July of 2012. 

Rocky Mountain National Park, Bear lake. 

Rocky Mountain National Park, Bear lake. 

By the time I made this photograph I was still early in my student career but clearly my technique was improving. This was really the first long exposure that I was truly happy with. 

By the time I made this photograph I was still early in my student career but clearly my technique was improving. This was really the first long exposure that I was truly happy with. 

I was a little stunned how much of my new work I saw in my old work. I wasn't thinking about vision or creating a style. Just making the photographs I wanted to make. Alright enough talk. Here are some of the highlights of my final portfolio. A sort of best of. 

High Plains 16

Anderson 1

Ocean Beach 1 

Deadwood 1

Alaska 5

Resistance 11

Infrastructure 1

Winter 16

Paper 4

Architecture 1

Slide 6

Jim Blane, The Blane Project. 

Bill Brunger, The Blane Project

Over the past few years I have been able to photograph on the shores of San Diego, the mountains of Alaska and Colorado; Wide open plains of eastern Colorado and the homes of several WWII vets. I leave school feeling equally comfortable on location, in the studio and yes even the dreaded dark room. It has been a great ride. 

So now what? Now I get focused. My submissions to magazines, contests, galleries etc.. has been completely lack luster. I have really been trying to concentrate on squeezing every drop of experience out of school that I can. From now on I will be focused. More submissions. Getting involved in my local art community. Searching for gallery representation and working with art consultants, are top on my list. Along with furthering The Blane Project and seeking to publish the completed work sometime in the near future. 

I want to take just a minute and thank everyone who helped me along the way through school. My wife and kids for putting up with me (especially the last few weeks getting ready for graduation). My professors who put up with my extra questions and constant emails, Tom, Cynthia, Skott. Not to mention the countless friends and supporters I have met on social media and navigating the art world. I really can't begin to say how much your support has meant to me, all of you. Congrats to my fellow classmates graduating. It is a truly talented group of artist. 

 

Cheers

Adam Williams