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If you are unable to visit our gallery and would like to purchase photographs from this preview or others in the gallery, please contact the gallery and call 585-271-2540.


Peter Marr's and Partners' Picks of the Show

Off the Beaten Path

November 3 to November 29, 2015

 Peter Marr and Gallery Partners have chosen their "Picks of the Show"
and present a commentary on their choices.

click here to return to the details of the exhibit


All images copyright by the individual photographers

Peter Marr's Picks

Reflections in Red by Phyllis Thompson

Reflections in Red
by Phyllis Thompson

 This stellar image is a gorgeous celebration of nature at its autumnal finest. I hope that the photographic purists who have a chance to view this brilliant and creative print, will agree with me that dividing the image into separate halves, greatly enhances its impressive impact. All through the winter, the evergreens that anchor this lake shoreline have had their chance to dominate the scene with their distinctive shapes and bright green foliage. Spring and summer allows the deciduous trees to compete and make their presence felt, but it is in the late autumn, that they burst forth in a blaze of color as in this image. Their inspiring display of flaming red and yellow hues is just spectacular, made all the more so by being framed by the deep green evergreens, which enhances their bold display even more. The dramatic lighting further boosts the brilliance of the color palette, and intensifies every detail in this woodland landscape.

What makes this print so memorable, is that all of the trees have grown up at the edge of a small lake, separated by a small line of rocks at the water’s edge. What is so spectacular, is that the artist has captured the image at a time when the lake surface is at its most tranquil, creating virtually a mirror-image of the trees in the water. The result is an idyllic and serene autumnal masterpiece. Amazingly, the reflective image is slightly softer in sharpness, but the colors take on an increased saturation and added brilliance to the color display. There is also an added benefit, in that the bright background of the top of the frame is more subdued in the reflection, further helping the overall image. What is interesting, and may be overlooked by some viewers, is that the line of rocks at the water’s edge are in places reprised by some rocks visible on the water’s surface. These rocks take on the appearance of fish swimming close to the surface, who occasionally come up to enjoy the autumnal air, and of course to view this exceptional color display, as every viewer I am sure will.

Forest Bloom by Gary Thompson

Forest Bloom

by Gary Thompson

Nature never ceases to amaze us in putting on a spectacular display throughout the year, none more awe-inspiring than this amazing forest scene so creatively captured by the author. The artist is a master observer and interpreter of scenic beauty, and in Forest Bloom, he has revealed to us the sheer perfection of nature’s design, and given us a wonderful print that is a subject for contemplation and a source of inspiration.

Nature is for reverence, and here, where beauty and life are expressed eloquently, there is a sacredness that the environment is still alive. The soft lighting is inspiring and magical, accentuating every detail, and revealing the exquisite hues of the azaleas. The sublime pink and white varieties of these beautiful plants lights up the foreground with a captivating display of design and color. The trees, standing true and upright, represent a sense of splendor as well as strength, and they are positioned in the frame admirably, both to shelter the azalea shrubs from the sun’s direct rays, and to leave a gap for the viewer to admire the background scene. The latter is delightfully revealed as a stately large willow tree, in full spring foliage, and being softer in focus it creates a dynamic presence. Beyond the willow tree, the background fades delightfully to a mist-filled expanse. In such august surroundings, I would be remiss if I did not point out an imposing red Japanese maple in the right center of the print. It will never grow as large as the other trees, but its colorful leaves will be clearly visible into late fall, and it will help to continue beautifying this area when the azaleas lose their flowers, although thankfully they will retain their wonderful form and shiny green leaves.

I hope that everyone who has the opportunity to visit this photographic image gallery will spend time to admire and enjoy this stellar print.

Lichen Patterns by Phyllis Thompson


Lichen Patterns
By Phyllis Thompson

Phyllis and Gary have an interest and passion for their subject matter, and they see their subjects in a special way as something transcending the ordinary. Lichen Patterns, is a superb example of the forces of nature in relation to the land, and beautifully illustrates nature’s life progression. The lovely soft lighting creates a mood and atmosphere that is compelling, yet all the while there is a reality and feeling that things are continuously changing. There is visual continuity in which the light throughout the scene blends inspiringly, and where all of the elements work harmoniously together. The impressive color palette is visibly enhanced by the diffuse lighting, covering a wide spectrum of hues from the darker tones of the rocks and trees, all the way to the delightful light shades of the lichens, to the autumnal yellows and reds of the foliage. There is a compelling combination of the curves and contours of the large boulders that play against the strong verticals of the large trees.

One is very aware of nature’s controlling presence here, which is both nurturing and hostile. Life here is all about survival and renewal, from the saplings striving to grow into large trees and replace those here when they eventually die and fall to the ground. Even the leaves of the deciduous trees want to eventually turn into the most gorgeous autumnal hues, before they too must sadly say goodbye to their hosts and fall to the ground below. Thankfully, the dead trees and leaves eventually compost into living matter that will greatly help the renewal of this lovely woodland area. I would be remiss if I did not comment on the massive boulder and group of rocks. They too will one day break down, but their timeline for disintegration is considerably longer than that for the leaves and the trees. What is so inspiring with these rocks is that as they age, they are sources of forest growth, in this case with the lichens that grow and thrive on their surface.  These exquisite living formations form enchanting patterns, and their colorful exteriors add a welcome glow and ambiance to this great image, so wonderfully seen and captured by the artist.
Autumn at Moss Glen Falls by Gary Thompson

Autumn at Moss Glen Falls
by Gary Thompson

This memorable and peerless image has majesty, serenity and beauty that is simply awesome All of the important elements in this print work harmoniously together, creating a strong visual statement. The framing of the waterfall by the two trees at the right is creative and masterly. These trees are not pictorial giants, nor are the twisted branches things of beauty, but nature has deliberately planted them so that they complement the entire scene, framing, but not overpowering the falls. I love the color harmony that permeates throughout the entire print.

The lovely soft lighting brings out the golden hues of the leaves to perfection, together with the light browns and pale reds. These delicate colors are further enhanced as they are offset against deep greens, the brown shades displayed by the trees, and the darker hues of the rocks in the pool basin. The diffuse illumination inspiringly reveals every feature of the massive rock cliff, including structural formations, a variety of colors, and a grandeur that is awe-inspiring. All of this impressive detail is visible because the waterfall is in a more quiescent mood regarding water flow. The latter emerges from a distant glen, descending majestically in a series of cascades, whose silky strands allow the viewer to observe the full beauty of the rock formations. The artist has cleverly and intuitively used a shutter speed that highlights the motion and softness of the water to create both a visionary effect, that also reveals the remarkable details and presence of the rocks themselves. This is an inspiring and creative image for every viewer to enjoy and contemplate on.

Gallery Partners' Picks
The Clear Mountain Stream by Robert Carr

The Clear Mountain Stream

by Robert Carr

The title of Robert’s image not only describes the location where the image was taken and the absolute clarity of the water in the stream, but it also characterizes Robert’s ability to technically achieve a very clear and sharp image. This image is well balanced with the stream and rocks in the foreground leading our eye to the group of pines that eventually lead us to the wonderful blue skies that are detailed with light clouds. Additionally the color scheme is perfect with the orangey browns in the foreground leading to the green pines and eventually to the blue sky. Finally, the orientation as a vertical image is exactly right for this scene with the tall pines stretching out the frame. This is a well-composed image, which was taken with careful technical expertise. Good work!



Ford Street Bridge by Luann Pero


Ford Street Bridge
by Luann Pero

On the surface, it’s an image of a bridge that many of us know, either from crossing it by car or by walking -- perhaps stopping to take a picture of the distant Rochester skyline. But this image is so much more. It’s dusk, a hint of day still clinging to the clouds. The streetlights reveal the riveted, iron arches that stand as one side of the corridor ahead. The narrow reflections on the iron railing border the faintly illuminated walkway on the other side. From our vantage point, the walkway begins in the dark at our feet, and becomes more visible as it stretches out under the streetlights, inviting us ahead. The glow from the lights seems to have physical substance reaching out, asking to be touched. 

All of these elements find their place in the excellent composition. There is movement in the arches and the vertical triangular structures reaching up to support them. The rivets on the arches, dark against the reflected light, balance the white lights against the dark background on the right. Both the geometry in the image and the light bring us across the bridge. The artist has used light and all of the elements of the scene to create a mood of mystery, the opening scene in a story we might create for ourselves. The image in black and white augments the mood, and lets the imagination move from the present to the past and back.  An excellent image!

Bird in the Bush by Angela Possemato


Bird in the Bush
by Angela Possemato

Angela is an excellent photographer of landscapes and nature, especially of birds. She has a few favorite sites where she photographs all sorts of flora and fauna. This photo of a blue-gray gnatcatcher on an early spring day, is artfully framed and mounted. Angela uses an element of texture in the background for a feeling of timelessness. The light is just to the left and in back of Angela slightly brushing the plumage and creating detail in the tree branches nearest to the bluebird thereby focusing the eye to a power position of the subject, one third in from the left and one third up from the bottom. The wide aperture setting that allows the background to go out of focus also attracts the attention of the viewer to the blue-gray gnatcatcher. The buds on the branches clearly signal early spring and the bird is likely looking for food or materials with which to begin a nest. The diagonal branches on the right of the photo and the new growth assist in drawing the eye back to the bird. 

This is an excellently planned and executed photo displaying the serenity of spring and the optimism of new life following the harsh winter. In selecting this photo for inclusion in this exhibit, Angela is reminding us that even though we are heading for the cold and frost of winter, spring is never far behind.
Untitled by Hank Shaw


by Hank Shaw 

This photograph, as well as Hank’s other photograph on display, uses simple digital images and from them creates beautiful impressionistic art. Post-processed manipulation of photographs runs the gamut from very minor corrections to the extreme. Too often, less accomplished photographers tend to over manipulate their photographs, “amping” up the color too much, over sharpening, composting images in a way where “the viewer can see the wires”.

Hank has not fallen  into this trap, but instead uses creative extreme post-processing techniques in a very artistic way , allowing  for the subject to still retain its simplicity while providing  a photograph that leaves the world of traditional photography and moves the viewer into another dimension of beauty. This is somewhat analogous to paintings which run the gamut from “realism” to totally abstract representation of an identified subject.

Hank continues a trend of several other talented photographers who have exhibited in Image City Photography Gallery, who start with one or more digital images and produce a photograph that goes beyond the way the subject or subjects initially appeared in the camera viewfinder. The composition is so elegantly simple, showing three leaves of a houseplant against a window and drape. The colors are muted and lend to the beauty of this photograph.

Photographic educators have often stated that showing something simple from everyday life or even exotic locations, which may be often photographed by many, in a way that has not been done before is a major accomplishment. Hank has evolved a style presenting strong and beautiful images that follow in this direction. 

Image City Photography Gallery  ♦   722 University Avenue  ♦    Rochester, NY 14607 ♦ 585.271.2540
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