Creative Philosophy

Celebration of Pride 2020

In celebration of Pride 2020, I would light to present my first creative project from 2004 “Queen of the Sea ~~ Queen of the Deck”.

Let me clarify, unlike my photography to that point where I would create an image based what was presented to me be it a building, landscapes, fishing village, etc. This project was going to be outside my comfort zone. Besides the normal technical photographic requirements, I had to script the story, create the scene, and acquire the costume. The complete process.

This was a great experience and had a direct influence on the development of my artistic style.

For the group exhibition, all the artwork had to reflect a “mermaid”. As a photographer, do I take a picture of a mermaid? No, I had to think outside the box and create a unique presentation.

After brainstorming with a friend, we developed the idea of the queen of cards and to distinguish the different suits we would use the queen’s scepter topped with a heart, diamond, spade, or club. Since I was transgender, I would be the queen. Yes, it is a self-portrait.   

To ensure that I would capture the right image, I shot a roll of ten images for each suit.  My camera is manual so after setting the focus, I used a cable release to capture the image. Then after each shot, I had to waddle back and forth from my perch to advance the film and to adjust any settings.

In hindsight, I should have video tapped the creation of the images. It was quite a sight!

At the opening reception, I arrived fashionably late. As I remember, I was wearing a red leather mini shirt with matching jacket and knee-high black leather boots. When I entered the gallery, they looked at me and then the artwork. Yes, they now could personally connect with my artwork. My work was a hit of the night and allowed for several engaging and interactive conversations.

I cannot always be with my artwork to create that personal connection. My artistic style has evolved to create a connection with the viewer to engage with them to question what they are looking at whether it is a painting or sketch and even the subject. This creates a connection and at the same time allowing them to form their own interpretation.

Shortly after the exhibition, I was introduced to American photographer, Cindy Sherman. I was particularly drawn to her groundbreaking self-portraits – “Untitled Film Stills”. I continue to follow her work today.

Watch for future posts on my blog where I will personally connect with you to provide insight on my creation process by highlighting specific images.

Happy Pride!

By Dale Reid

Contemporary fine art photographer Dale M Reid took charge of her destiny by making a commitment to herself and her life partner and soulmate.
Reid’s belief in herself has allowed her to chart a new course in life as a full-time professional artist and transgender woman. As Dale transitioned through her new life journey, she developed technical skills, questioned convention, trusted her instincts, and with her passion, was able to craft a distinctive artistic voice. Her artwork ranges from classical to sensual to erotic and engages the viewer to question what they see.

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