Commentaries provoked by the following essay — especially the lengthy and thoughtful responses by the renowned photoeditor, John G. Morris. — have moved me to make some changes in the original version, which are mainly related to the paragraph in which I discuss Joe Rosenthal’s image of the Iwo Jima flag raising. I am grateful to all who have taken the time and effort to critique my work, and I salute the medium of Internet, which permits us to interact, and thus clarify our arguments. Some initial remarks may serve to anticipate future misunderstandings.
In photographer Kevin Horan’s series Chattel, he poses a question: what would it look like if his ungulate neighbors came into the studio and asked to have their portraits made? The Langley, Washington-based artist captured hoofed animals (also known as ungulates) that are on and around Whidbey Island. He depicts an up-close and personal view of the creatures that are part of farmland and nursery rhymes.Horan’s subjects are set against a dark background, and his limited color palette washes the animals in warm gray tones. It gives the images a timeless feel and also highlights incredible details. Mounds of thick, textured fur and imposing antlers look unexpectedly stately, and when alone, their unique personalities shine. Horan presents these creatures in ways that we don’t normally see, and he’s removed them from places like a petting zoo to instead make them the focal point of gorgeous fine art images.Kevin Horan: Website via [Dark Silence in Suburbia]