Photographers

Post image for Alan McGee’s photographs examine landscape as metaphor

“Beauty and Terror: Landscape as Metaphor” by photographer Alan McGee of Portola Valley is the featured exhibit at Portola Art Gallery (75 Arbor Road) in March. A reception for the artist will be held on Saturday, March 18, from 1:00 – 4:00 pm.

The show features photographs from 35 years of Alan’s explorations on the beaches of the San Mateo coast. He was initially drawn to this stretch of coastline near Pescadero because of the beauty of the landscape, with its eroded sandstone formations.

It was on these beaches, with his 8×10 view camera, that Alan encountered first-hand the photograph as metaphor: “While trudging along the beach with my camera and tripod balanced on my shoulder, I came upon an interesting jellyfish, about eight inches in diameter, lying on the beach. The jellyfish was accompanied by a flow pattern of black sand that contrasted nicely with the beige colored sand of the beach. I set up my view camera and aimed it at my subject.

“I then put my head under the dark cloth, adjusted the tilt of the back of my camera and the focusing knob, bringing the upside down image into focus. Much to my surprise, the camera’s version of the image created a curious creature, enrobed in black, which seemed to be winking at me as it was rising up out of the inverted background. This experience literally took my breath away.”

Over time, explains Alan: “The area beneath my dark cloth became a magical place where I could contemplate the image on the ground glass free of distraction. This became a process of meditation with open eyes, an entree into my unconscious realm. I began to experience the transformation of the natural world into figures of fantasy, many of which were indeed terrifying.”

Beauty and Terror is also the title of Alan’s newest book, published in December 2016. This book is part of Alan’s efforts as a recent octogenarian to create a photographic legacy. His first book, published in 2014, is entitled Rodin Revisited, and is placed at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Musee Rodin in Paris, and the Cantor Art Museum at Stanford University. He plans to publish three more books and place them in libraries and museums that will make his work accessible beyond his lifespan.

“Reflections” (11×14″, photograph, 1980) is one of the featured artworks in Alan McGee’s March exhibit, “Beauty and Terror: Landscape as Metaphor,” at the Portola Art Gallery; photo of Alan McGee by Frances Freyberg (c) 2014

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Learn all about hummingbirds at a March 14 program at Menlo Park Library

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When wildlife photographer Joan Sparks visits the Menlo Park Library (800 Alma St.) on March 14 at 7:00 pm, audience members will get an up-close look at the tiniest bird on the planet. The  program will include photography, along with accompanying music and commentary, providing identification and description of several different species of hummingbirds that can […]

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Barry Fleisher’s hospital construction photo is honored

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We got an update from Menlo Park-based photographer Barry Fleisher: “I’ve been photographing the construction progress of the new Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford for almost three years. As part of that body of work, I submitted photographs to the 2016 annual construction photography contest sponsored by Engineering News-Record (ENR), a construction trade periodical. “This […]

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Painterly-looking, golden leaves provide a spark of holiday tranquility

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InMenlo contributing photographer Robb Most took a stroll around his west Menlo Park neighborhood yesterday, following Thursday’s storm, which pretty much stripped the remaining leaves off of trees. We liked, in particular, the gold leaves near a gate along with the same leaves mixed with pale rose (can’t quite describe the color!) ones sharing space atop […]

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Nine favorite photos from street photographer Scott Loftesness

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InMenlo co-founder Scott Loftesness is an avid street photographer, who has traveled both near (San Francisco) and far (Cuba and France) to hone his craft in workshops. Here he has picked his nine favorite Instagram photos taken during 2016. You can follow Scott on Instagram here. If you’re a local photographer who uses Instagram, send […]

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Photographer Robert Buelteman is First Friday speaker on October 7

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Woodside Arts & Culture Committee hosts a First Friday event each month at the Town Hall in Woodside. The events are free and include light refreshments at 6:45 followed by a program from 7:00 to 8:00 pm. This Friday, October 7, local photographer Robert Buelteman will be talking about photographing Peninsula scenes over the past four […]

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Photographer Merrie Asimow takes her cameras on an African adventure

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Menlo Park-based photographer Merrie Asimow may be most-known for her horse photography, but a 10-day trip last August to Kenya and Tanzania yielded some equally wonderful wildlife photos. She’s a self-described “Nikon person,” and brought two bodies along on the trip — a D750 and D500, along with two lenses, a 24-70 mm and an 80-400 […]

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Peninsula Photographic Arts Guild hosts “Envisioning Cuba” exhibit

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Menlo Park-based photographer Barry Fleisher is one of 10 photographers whose works will be shown at a Peninsula Photographic Arts Guild exhibit from September 17 to November 9. An artists’ reception will be held on Saturday, September 17 from 1:00 to 4:00 pm. The exhibit is at Avenue 25 Gallery, 32 West 25th Avenue, San […]

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Capturing the sights at the Menlo Charity Horse Show

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The Menlo Charity Horse Show, which benefits Vista Center for the Blind, continues today through Sunday at the Menlo Circus Club in Atherton; the schedule of events is available online. Daily passes are $10; children 10 and under and seniors over 65 are free. We stopped in on Tuesday, the first day of the show, […]

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Photographer Ron Herman talks about the changing face of Cuba on July 20

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On July 20, the Menlo Park Main Library invites people to get a feel for the changing face of Cuba, during a special lecture and slide show by Foothill College photography professor and seasoned Cuba traveler Ron Herman. The island nation of Cuba, with its Spanish colonial architecture and cobblestone streets filled with classic American cars, has appeared […]

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Newsroom By the Bay students visit Pace Art + Technology:TeamLab in Menlo Park

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Menlo-Atherton High School teacher Betsy Sergeant Snow led a photography class this summer as part of Newsroom By the Bay. “This is the first year they’ve included a photography strand, so I taught four classes a day and was available in the afternoons to consult on workflow, captioning, and support,” Betsy explained. “The campers are divided […]

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