PHOTOGRAPHER FOCUS · Tiernan Og
I think that Tiernan Og considers nature -for which he declares himself truly passionate-, the axis of his photographic work. But he plays here with his own rules. From almost the first moment, you can realize that Tiernan does not idealize nature in his photography. In it, you can enjoy strikingly beautiful views and scenes which are, however, visually and conceptually closer to the viewer. In these snapshots you’ll not find an artificial representation of the landscape, its motives, the light or the composition … that may turn nature into an ideal, overprocessed, almost exotic scenery. On the contrary, who carefully observes these images, will have always the feeling that, in its beautiful serenity, they have a realistic air, something that makes us perceive them as familiar, however much, from the first moment, we become aware that this representation requires the ability to see and select that part of natural reality that shall become a great photograph.
Either way, it is clear that in Tiernan’s work we can evidence a special and intimate connection with nature in general, and with those beautiful landscapes of Southern Wisconsin in particular. Tiernan tells me that in such obvious passion for the wild lies his idea that nature is a place of spiritual regeneration. It is easy to understand how the gentle wooded hills, those lonely shores of rivers and lakes, the recondite forests …. can be places where we can recover the balances lost in our day to day and the tranquil life of past times. And the truth is that, after wandering around his archives, perhaps you will agree with the idea that in Tiernan’s work, that connection with nature becomes also a connection with the past, which seems to imply an attempt conscious or unconscious of recovering the pristine landscapes and the purest version of a nature from which man is still absent. With very few exceptions, you will not discover in these images the presence or the trace of man. These are scenes that depict a landscape non-transformed by his hand -not humanized if you will- as if, after all, one wished to relive by them the experiences of the explorer or the pioneer that open pass through forests and rivers for the very first time. And though, maybe, Tiernan will not entirely agree with it -I’ll take the risk!-, I believe some of that -…the call of the Wild- can be inferred of the lines you will read in the header of his main blog: ‘Come with me to explore the trails, woods, rivers and lakes of Southern Wisconsin and beyond …’
Tiernan’s taste for landscapes encompasses both spacious scenes of wide horizons such as photography of recondite sites, of those places where, if anything, it becomes even clearer the feeling that we are discovering this remote place that nobody trod before us. These are snapshots that make poignantly clear Tiernan’s talent to manage the lighting, to capture the subtle interplay of light and shades also characteristic of beautiful sunsets, or the luxuriance of distant forests. In these images, his eye focuses sensitively in the way in which light reveals colors and textures, shapes and visual rhythms; as if somehow, he would want to make us participants in the idea that there is something precious and unique behind everything, in every reality, however small or insignificant it may be. That idea -the search of the beauty in the reverse side of the trivial- is not new, but I do think that so is the manner in which Tiernan takes it to another level to secure it with its opposite: the purpose of turning what is closer or daily, into something that apparently it is not, or it doesn’t seem to us through the lens of the camera. In Tiernan’s own words: ‘...to seek the strange in the familiar or to make the familiar strange’. Anyway, whatever the place or purpose, everything catches his attention when he looks through the viewfinder of his camera: from subjects of macrophotographic detail in whose capture he refines with accuracy the focusing and composition, to the greatest scenarios photographed with large focal lengths and a superb depth of field.
Tiernan is thus, a sensitive landscape photographer and although it can not be denied that this is his primary interest, is certainly not the only one. You will discover in his side blog, tiernanogmuse, the manner in which he cultivates other genres: digital art, abstract, urban, portraits, and experimental. It is extremely interesting to watch calmly this photography, somehow freer, in which Tiernan separates himself of stylistic ties and that invisible boundaries that weigh on landscape photography, since in this area he explores with great talent and creativity light, movement, visual rhythm and patterns in nature, the limits between figurative and abstract photography, and so on …
Tiernan uses a mirrorless Canon EOS M, a lightweight and versatile camera that can mount the most varied lenses. His work is therefore entirely digital, although he declares himself undeniably influenced by the method and the eigenmodes of analog photography, especially when working in black and white. And you realize that this influence is certainly powerful when he tells you ‘…I had a dark room in my younger days …’.
Thanks so much to you and all the sites that promote original photography in tumblr, including AMomentovBeauty,
Biutifulpics, Lensblr, Luxlit, Telescopical, TheeBrokenPath, TheOriginalPlant…and so many more.
And of course thanks to all original photographers who both create and follow other creators on tumblr. My only regret is not being able to heart all your excellent work. Cheers! t