Tag Archives: photographs

Street Photography Dealt Heavy Blow in Arkansas

It is still legal to take a shot of bamboo in Arkansas. Indeed my favorite subjects of machines, animals and flowers are all safe from the new law passed that will put the art of a street photographer in serious potential danger. The new SB-79, or the Personal Rights Protection Act. This law will require a photographer standing on the street in a public place to get a legal binding document from every person they photograph.


In most areas of photography this model release form is nothing new. Indeed, professional photographers will carry this kind of form with them when they go on shoots.   Up till now though it has not been necessary to worry about whether a photographer needs to have such a form filled out by every person photographed in a shot when that person is on a public piece of land.


However, The art of street photography specializes in the photography of the cultural side of people. This photographer specializes in capturing the culture and day-to-day activities of the subjects he captures. They show both the good and bad of every city and the colorful people who live there. So it’s immediately possible to see a potential conflict of interest.


The rules have been pretty clear-cut. When a person goes to the park and runs around with a dog chasing a Frisbee, That person is in a public area. The expectation to a right of privacy is pretty much forfeit. People can take pictures with you in them because you are in public. On a side note, it doesn’t entitle the photographer to act like an irresponsible jerk about his right to take the picture. The rule of “Just because you can doesn’t mean you should.” applies here. If however, a photographer has to climb a privacy fence to grab the shot of you sunbathing in your backyard, well, it’s called a privacy fence for a reason. See? It’s some of the clearest legal mud you can find.


However, this new bill seeks to change that. In order to provide a thicker murkier mud, It basically allows for litigation against the commercial photographer if the person being photographed does not sign a release form giving permission.


So, very soon if you are taking a picture in Arkansas you may want to sell, you have to make sure that no person is in your picture without the release. But it’s not that simple. Remember a person in the law means:


SB 79 Statute : 4-75-1003.

(4)(A-B) “Person” means an individual or entity. A partnership, a corporation, a company, an association, or any other business entity; a not-for-profit corporation or association; an educational or religious institution; a political party; and a community, civic, or other organization;


Again, while most photographers use these release forms to cover themselves from any possible legal issues anyway, one would not think this is too big of a deal. But that is not the fear. The fear behind this law is that it is just not always feasible for a photographer to determine whether a person actually needs to be processed as a model or not. After all as with everything there are always exceptions to the new rules. In this case more than 2 pages of the 9-page bill are exceptions.


Could you imagine running a photography business where you would have to literally have a group of litigation lawyers with you everyday to determine whether taking a particular shot would actually fall under the category of legal or not? With every possible click of the camera shutter having the potential for wiping out your business? Would you risk it?


As is usual, the solving of one problem definitely leads to others. Street photographers might not want to visit Arkansas anymore. It’s too risky. This means no more pictures and thereby no promotion of true Arkansas beauty or the people and their culture. Could this lose valuable tourist dollars? No one knows. But hey, at least now they don’t have to worry about what they look like at Wal-Mart.


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Shocking Photographic Behavior at Angkor Temple Complex

I read photographic art and general art news almost everyday, most of the time the news is a story about a massive sale at a top auction house involving millions of dollars.   The mental image of those grand art auctions is much like our picture this week.  Ornate Column in Lightcarvings, marble columns and the hint of sophistication where the clients satisfy their need for the exquisite.

But every so often I find a true gem. This is one of those news events that you can’t believe. You end up reading the opening statement twice before it really hits home.

Three French tourists in their early twenties have been arrested by Cambodian authorities for taking nude photos of each other inside the country’s famed Angkor temple complex, officials said Friday. – artdaily.com


Seriously? I find myself in one of those odd moments hoping that the cause of their little escapade is a little recreational drug use. I find it hard to imagine that three men in a sober and coherent state of mind would decide to pose nude for photographs at a major cultural temple complex.

Of course recreational drug use would not excuse the outrageous, and let’s face it, idiotic behavior, but it would give a better understanding of why they did such a thing. However, I think it’s the youthful lack of understanding cause and effect that truly bothers me though. That they attempted this stunt is bad enough, but they attempted their little stunt just after a few days a small group of women did the same thing causing a major incident and official protest. Well umm…  Duh?

I’d guess that none of the three defendants are really thinking it was a good idea about now. They are facing  a charge of public exposure that is punishable up to 6 months of prison time and may soon face pornography charges that can result in a fine and a year in prison on top of that.

This is in Cambodia. Their prison system is not exactly a well-funded tourist destination. Crowded conditions and poorly paid prison staff accused of mistreatment and taking bribes create a rather unwholesome environment to live in.   Further, these men can look forward to a year and half of very cheap rice and lousy cheap vegetables served twice a day as their only meals for the length of their stay.

I truly wonder if they understand the issues they are now causing at the French embassy and at home with their relatives. All of this aggravation is a result of breaking the 1st cardinal rule of photography and  its proof why the rule exists. That rule is simply to use common sense.

You want to take nude pictures? Fine. That’s nothing new. But go through the right channels. Understand that the authorities may not let you to take the pictures.  Walk away and be happy you won’t rot in a jail that makes an american supermax prison look like a trip to Disney World.

But there is another side effect of this incident that now tugs at my brain. How long will it be before a normal tourist can take a camera into Angkor without arousing undue suspicion of the authorities?   Will this become a case of 3 bad apples ruining it for the rest of us? Will professional photographers be considered simply guilty by association? It’s something to think about.

What are your thoughts?

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More Information: http://artdaily.com/news/76126/Three-French-tourists-arrested-for-nude-photos-at-Cambodia-s-Angkor-temple[/url]


What Do You See in Turtle Rock?

Ann and I walked through the garden producing the photographs that became the show Walking Through the Zen Garden.  We had just walked along a narrow winding path when Ann pointed at this particular boulder and said, “That looks like a turtle.”  I looked up from fiddling with my camera and said “That isn’t a turtle that’s just a … a… turtle.”  Yeah, that does look like one.”  click.


Thus, the artwork titled Turtle Rock arrived.  But what happened?  Why did I first look at the rock and never thought it looked like a turtle, but then it did?


The answer is form of Pareidolia. No, it’s not some tropical disease.  It’s a weird scientific word that basically means that our brains attempt to make visual or auditory order out of chaos.


I saw a rock and a random texture of pebbles and crags in the rock.  My brain did not enjoy it.   Human brains dislike visual or auditory chaos.  It perceives it as a threat.   So it does something about it.  It creates the illusions you see while looking at a cloud in the sky and begin to see houses, and faces, and expressions.


This stems from the days when we were hunters and gathers and depended on our five senses to survive. You need clear vision and pattern recognition to see your dinner running through the bushes so you can aim your spear.  You also need clear distinct hearing and auditory recognition to recognize the sound of a charging elephant so you can get out-of-the-way.


If your senses trick you and offer nothing but random sights or sounds, your brain will rebel and attempt to see what it thinks it should.   The reverse of this concept is why camouflage works.  Camouflage creates chaotic patterns out of something identifiable and tricks your brain into not see what is actually there by using the opposite visual technique.


When I heard the word “turtle” my brain, not enjoying the chaos and lack of patterns in the rock, made my eyes look for the head of a turtle.  I quickly identified the snout at the top, the eye in the middle, and the nearby rock as part of a turtle shell breaking the ground like water. Art created by the power of illusion through chaos.

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Our Feature Today is Behind Closed Doors

Many people adore gates because of their hidden meaning.  Gates represent both protection and unknown opportunities.  What is more compelling than not knowing what is behind a closed locked door?

After I started the process of determining what pictures to show in the gallery, I noticed that my mind had changed about this image. I discovered that I fell in love with the contrast of the image and the balancing act they do to make an entire quality piece of art.

The most compelling and notable contrast is the colors.  The door face was deep in a shadow due to the sun blazing on the other side of it.  This creates a cool blue tint to the wood and further enhanced the alluring black knots that penetrate the pieces of lumber.   The amazing contrast of lighting and color not only rely on the blue shades of the wood but the powerful warm reds and oranges found in the beams at the top of the door where the sun is revealing itself.

Consider the lines of the gate.  Let your eye follow the natural wood boards as they travel from the bottom of the door to the top.  Now, in the middle of the frame there is a bar that crosses the pattern of the up and down lines.  This contrast is even more real when you discover the bluish-gray cold iron handles that highlight and in fact, compliment the up and down lines found in the wood.

Not forgetting, we also have the lines created at the bottom of the door and the multiple warm sun-kissed beams at the top.  This creates a seductive framing of the door and provides it with the characteristic rectangle pattern that we naturally assume a door to have.

Overall, the effect generates powerful and mysterious questions.  What is behind the gate?  What opportunities lie on that mysterious path?

Can you imagine what it feels like to not know of our next adventure in photographic art?

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Walking Through The Zen Garden


Welcome to the online début for the anticipated show Walking Through The Zen Garden.  

This show will be on display starting Monday, July 22, 2013 thru Sept 16, 2013

This  show contains the various photographic works of Andrew Chianese and his artistic view of nature in action. The pictures in the show share a morning stroll thru and around a zen garden. Special works include daring squirrels, magical turtles, and the serene beauty of reflection ponds.

There is even a little red bug hidden among the various works.   See if you can find it!

As always, Inquires and comments are welcome.  Just ask!  If you are not on our email listing, please sign up so we can continue to bring you the latest happenings here at the gallery.

Sizes and options are available here….

About the Artist….

About the Gallery….

Enjoy the Show!


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