August 15, 2010

J. Harley Photography

Chicago based photographer Jeffery Harley Oudsema knows his stuff... and his models! I recently became aware of this talented artist through shared mutual friend and model, Jenny Shapiro (pictured above!). While visiting Jenny and her beau Andrew at their new beautiful exposed brick apartment, I was introduced to J Harley's work. Both native Kalamazoo-ians from Kalamazoo, Michigan, Jenny purchased an original J Harley piece from Jeffery, her close friend. The piece was a collection of photographs from various locations in Kalamazoo, and the photos were fashioned to spell out the name of the town. What could have easily fallen into the category of a hokey-home-town collage was unquestionably transformed by J. Harley's serious skill and talent. The photographs were not only professionally sound but uniquely artistic- taking a potentially ordinary photo of a train station and making it into a place of peaceful history and after-hours serenity: a place where the normally heavy foot traffic pauses, time stills, and, in that right moment, all is calm in Kalamazoo. Needless to say my interest lead me to the J. Harley website where I was able to view his portfolio and fall more in love with his work. Jenny was also the featured photo for August (what a great choice). Did I mention the 'about me' section notes that J. Harley is a self-taught artist?! Just when I was struggling to find some inspiration- perfect timing. P.S on another note he shoots in both film and digital- an extra plus and special attentiveness to his work and clients. Know anyone who's getting married? This is your guy. (J. Harley pictured above in black and white)

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