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About Scanned Gesture

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About Scanned Gesture

In fine art a gesture is an expressive mark derived from an impulse and captured with media, such as ink on paper. The computer complicates that process by making the artist think instead of respond to impulses, so making a satisfying gesture has been a bit challenging. Creating an expressive line in Photoshop with a stylus is the obvious choice, but an interesting result requires a lot of preparation and editing, and is therefore no longer an impulse.

Early in my exploration process I laid down a black cloth then made gestures by pouring salt, and then photographed it. This process evolved into making gestures in sand at the beach under strong sunlight. Then one rainy day I struck upon the idea of substituting a scanner for the sand.

My scanned gesture work is made entirely from fingerprints, using hand movements captured on a scanner. The scanner records an artifact of my movement in a scan. From the scan, I manipulate organic lines and shapes often working with shapes that aren't immediately apparent. The resulting image with distorted fingerprints is shown here with interesting selections isolated from the background. The next step is to create some motifs assembled from these scan selections.

I enjoy what technology can bring to my creative process, and believe limitations are liberating because more attention is focused on what remains. The closer you look, the more you see... and you never know what you will find.