Color Manipulation Amplifies Flowers

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The late photographer Robert Mapplethorpe once said, ‘I’m
looking for the unexpected. I’m looking for things I’ve never seen before,’
which is the exact notion anyone will have when opening ‘Enlightened Blooms:
Solarized Floral Diptych Photographs By Brad Oliphant, published by Glitterati
Incorporated, the photographer’s first published book of photography.  Oliphant, an accomplished former
fashion photographer, decided to switch gears + turn his gaze onto the
classical subject of flowers but to such dramatic effect, the end result is
just breathtaking like his amaryllis below (pic 1).

The genius behind this
photographer’s floral pictures is solarization, his chosen transformative
process.  First, Oliphant chooses
to desaturate the flowers’ colors, rather than intensifying them, which creates
a perfect black-and-white canvas, for closely examining their forms + textures.  At first glance, a lot of his work reminded
me of hand painted photos from the early Nineteenth century.

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Sure, the pervasiveness of
computer software like Photoshop, being used on every type of photograph, from
making someone slimmer to creating the perfect sunset on your less than glamorous
holiday, Oliphant is a photographer that has taken it to a whole new level.  His unique approach to flowers is one
to marvel over, according to Russell Hart, the former Executive Editor of
American Photo magazine, in saying, ‘As I see it, Oliphant’s flower work
displays a true artistic + technical mastery, one that stems from the
picture.  Given the images’
technical perfection, in fact, I’m incredulous that nearly all of them are made
in the field, where so many variables must be controlled.  Light, as important as it is, is only
the most obvious of these-and is controlled, if at all, by waiting with eyes
wide.  It might not even
materialize.’

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As you leaf through the
book containing thirty-seven diptychs, you can’t help but notice how the flowers
just jump off the page.  By
manipulating color, Oliphant manipulates your focus, leading your eye to where
he wants it to go.  A petal’s
curled edge, for instance, becomes the focal point, leading the eye to follow
the whole flower as if it were an illustration created with one single line,
like the parrot tulip below.  Of course, the way the book pairs the same image yet colored
differently, you get to really see Oliphant’s reach + expertise as shown in the
petals of this tulip, ‘start as a deep magenta, then revert to black + white at
their fringes-as if to rein in their urge to turn rococo,’ said Hart.

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‘Enlightened Blooms: Solarized Floral Diptych Photographs By
Brad Oliphant, published by Glitterati Incorporated, demonstrates Oliphant’s
concept about finding + showing beauty that the world simply misses, ‘walking
down a city block fixated on our problems + our work, + all the while there’s
beauty passing by,’ which makes this book a perfect addition to your library +
or a unique Mother’s Day keepsake. 
This title is
available for purchase at http://glitteratiincorporated.com.

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