DECEMBER 2018: JOSEPH HARLAN WHITE
The inspiration for my work came from Stan Brakhage’s Mothlight. The concept of presenting found materials from the natural world in an avant-garde manner resonated with me and became something I wanted to pursue creatively to really make my own.
I experimented with a variety of techniques and discovered micrography provided the aesthetic I was looking for. I produced a series of thirty-second videos that I called Case Studies using this method.
Although I enjoyed the work I was producing, I found the final product to be too chaotic for some of the more delicate subjects I wanted to showcase, particularly insects. So I transitioned away from the video format and focused on capturing individual micrographs.
The transition was simple, and I quickly discovered that I loved taking these images of insects. They exist in a world so easily overlooked, so it forced me to slow down, to comb nook and cranny for a potential subject. It forced me to slow down my method of micrography as well, as something as diminutive as a gnat requires a delicate hand to manipulate.
This process reignited a sense of discovery I hadn’t experienced for quite some time. I felt like a kid again, turning over rocks in the garden to watch the pill bugs and crickets scurry about their hidden metropolis. This feeling became the goal of my work. I want to rekindle that same sense of discovery in the viewer and remind them of this beautiful, complex world that is so easily missed.
Joseph Harlan White
Joseph Harlan White is a cinematographer turned photographer with an affinity for the natural world. His work strives to encourage people to slow down and appreciate the details that surround them everyday. His work has been showcased abroad in London, Milan, Berlin, and Athens, as well as at home in Georgia, Florida, New York, and Mississippi. Joseph received his BFA from the Savannah College of Art and Design in 2015. You can find more of his work at josephharlanwhite.com and on Instagram @josephharlanwhite.