Today we’d like to introduce you to Dennis Rainville.
Dennis, we’d love to hear your story and how you got to where you are today both personally and as an artist.
In the early days when I was considering a career I was torn between my love of photography and the arts, and my aptitude for math and the sciences. So, I eventually decided on the math and sciences route and started working in the High Tech and Computer industry utilizing my background and education in Electrical Engineering. I still kept my passion alive for photography while shooting film on a relatively cheap SLR.
One day I was reading an article about the new direction and turn that the Photography Industry was taking with the creation of a Digital Camera, or DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex). I shortly purchased one of my first DSLRs that rekindled my passion for photography. Not only could I instantly see what my Camera had captured, but there was this new program called Photoshop where I could actually process and adjust the pictures I had just captured. It was marriage made in heaven between the Art and Technology worlds
My passion and drive to take photographs was now fueled by my ability to create the types of Fine Art Photographs that I had envisioned. These types of photographs could not be capture in a single frame. One of my heroes in the Photography World was Ansel Adams. In one of his quotes he stated that “you don’t take a photograph, you make it” This just fueled my drive and ambition for the Digital Photography world which led to the types of Fine Art Photographs that I enjoy creating today.
We’d love to hear more about your art. What do you do you do and why and what do you hope others will take away from your work?
Well to start, I would say that I started my journey basically as a Landscape Photographer. But with my DSLR, and some of the processing programs that were becoming available, it allowed me to create scenes that were equivalent to what I physically saw, but my camera couldn’t capture in a single frame. Digital photograph also allowed me to “create” works of Fine Art, that again were not born from a single frame.
From landscape photography I quickly ventured in HDR (High Dynamic Range) to give me that ability to capture a scene that I saw with my eyes but could not capture in a single frame on my camera. The tonal range was too wide for my equipment. I then expanded into focus stacking of florals, where I would sometimes take 40 shots of a flower and combine all 40 together to give me a macro shot that was in focus from tip to back of the flower. I also created panoramic shots that allowed me to combine multiple horizontal scenes that could also be printed on rolled paper. I then started working on series of Black and White processed pictures, like my series that I created from shots in Beacon Hill and other Boston neighborhoods. From there I also stared working with Long Exposures, Textures, and an endless number ability that were offered me in the Digital Photography World.
I love the ability to create fine art in the digital darkroom. When I can take a shot that was ok, and then turn it into what I consider fine art, I felt like I have accomplished what I had set out to do. When I would finish working on a particular digital piece, I would call my wife over to offer her opinion on the piece. She would look at some particular pieces and state “it’s very nice, but it isn’t wall worthy”. So, “wall worthy” has become a standard term in our household defining the quality of my art. If it isn’t good enough to hang on your wall, it isn’t truly a fine art piece.
Have things improved for artists? What should cities do to empower artists?
I think with the advent of Digital Photography (at least for photographers) it has opened unlimited possibilities for the artist to create works of Fine Art from their digital captures. The digital darkroom offers the artist an endless number of ways to be creative.
With the introduction and release of digital cameras and the software tools that support them, I would say the environment has offered the photographer better and easier ways to express the creativity. We no longer just take a picture and have what we have. We now have a digital piece of canvas which we can expand, modify and be very creative with. As I stated earlier, the possibilities can be expanded as far as your creative thoughts can take them.
Cities like Boston can expose children and students at a young age to the possibilities of being creative with their digital photography. After all they have already started the front end of the creative process as they capture scenes today on the smart phones.
Do you have any events or exhibitions coming up? Where would one go to see more of your work? How can people support you and your artwork?
I think that the base spot to see my work is on my website, www.drfineart.com. Websites today offer people from the four corners of our globe to visit your site and inspect (and hopefully enjoy) your work. I also post on a weekly basis on two Facebook pages, Instagram (www.instagram.com/drfineart), and on some sites like 500px (more of an international viewer base). I also do periodic shows, and I do some instructional presentations at places like Bedford Center of the Art Photo Group, NHPPA New Hampshire Professional Photographers Association), Quail Ridge Camera Club, and the Camden Lakes Camera Club.