Maine-born photographer Caleb Charland explores the world of physics and mathematics in his extraordinary photography. Growing up in a rural household, where he spent a lot of time helping his father, he learned to appreciate the power and tools that materials hold.
Charland even earned appreciation with his early work: when he got his BFA in photography in 2004, he received departmental honors from the Massachusetts College of Art. In 2010, he earned an MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago as a Trustees Fellow in 2010. Sometimes it takes him weeks or even months to set up a photo, but the time and dedication he injects into his work is distinctly apparent in the final result: mind-blowing images to show the world.
In an interview Charland did with diyphotography.net, he says: ‘Simpler is better. Photos can take anywhere from 5 mins to a week or more to set up. Or in some cases they may take months to develop, waiting for the right time of year or requiring several field tests to get them right. Again I often learn a lot about a picture just by doing it. So I’ll prepare an instrument or an apparatus for a picture then just go for it. If I’m lucky it works out the first time, but often the initial test tells me how the idea will actually look or be rendered.’
Charland knows he’s putting a lot of effort in things that could be produced in a more time-effective manner using Photoshop but ‘(he) enjoys the analog process; there is something (about) working within limits.’(mymodernmet.com) In an age of not only Photoshop, but also Instagram and other smart phone apps, photographers such as Charland should be commended. Twitter and Facebook might illustrate otherwise, but not everyone is a photographer.
I don’t use Photoshop for the creation of the image, only slight color and tone adjustments to make a nice print. (Charland, in an interview with mymodernmet.com)
Charland’s work is very honest. He makes us look to everyday household objects in a different and unexpected way. One photo of him, makes us appreciate multiple disciplines: art, science and photography.