My photography addresses the profound environmental issues we face today. At its core are two questions: How much harm we, as human beings, have done to other life forms? And What we can do to right these wrongs?
Rather than take the usual documentary approach to this kind of subject matter, I construct miniature still lifes using toy animals and other props. In most of the images the animals are depicted in their own environment but attracted to a man-made object or circumstance, perhaps in their search for food – a turtle to a dangerous plastic shopping bag, a seal to a deadly fish net, or a duck to oil-fouled water. The results of these encounters will be harmful or fatal.
By creating these images in the studio with miniatures, my hope is to give them a narrative aspect and an element of surprise for viewers expecting real scenes of environmental degradation. I prefer to conceptualize the threats they depict, and in doing so bring greater attention to the daily effects of man-made objects and substances, especially once discarded, on every living being. We thoughtlessly throw these things away, yet many remain for years in our refuse stream, posing a persistent threat. There is a lesson here: What we create does serve us a purpose, but we should understand its deep impact on the mortality of other animals with which we share our planet.