In North America he has worked extensively in the Canadian Arctic, exploring the interaction of photography with other art forms in the Inuit and art communities of Cape Dorset. He travels whenever possible, and is currently director of the GenerationKenya project which profiles post Kenyans of achievement. He regularly exhibits in North America and Europe and recently celebrated the launch of the first East African exhibition of his fine art photography in Nairobi. For more info: Facebook event page. May 17, at am Njathika Leave a comment.
Wall Art. There seems to be no easy way to process them. My continuing journey of photographing things I see around Nairobi…. Here Jerru a few selections from a recent trip, and I often wonder: who is watching whom? Greeting Cards Spiral Notebooks. May 17, at am Njathika Leave a comment. I opted to find a shady spot behind a wall within the ruinsand Kinny girls large breasts while I waited for the light to change.
Closeup anal fingering. Jerry Riley – photographer, seeker of stories, explorer of life
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Jerry Riley is based in Nairobi Kenya. He is actively engaged in the following streams of photography — Architecture, portraiture, editorial, landscape, fine art, Africa, Canada arctic, travel. Subscribe to our newsletter and get a weekly update of all the latest projects and articles from our team delivered directly to your inbox. Sign up today! Love That Design. With speakers from all walks and spheres of life sharing their thoughts on inclusivity, empowerment and design, we all left feeling that much stronger, and daring to be wild… Light Middle East Awards: The Winners!
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The old Naivasha highway in Kenya is just northwest of bustling Nairobi. Most of us who live in Kenya know this road that starts in Naivasha town, passes Mt. Longonot, through the town of Mai Mahiu, and ascends up the escarpment to rejoin the main highway back to Nairobi. After years of traveling this road I am still captivated by the view, one of the best of this section of the Great Rift Valley. As with most roads in Kenya, there can be challenges. The escarpment road is used by many trucks, the steep inclines causing them to crawl at low speeds.
Just enjoy the view. When people learn that I am a photographer living in Kenya, they assume I am a wildlife photographer, as if there is nothing else to photograph here. No, I am not a photographer who specializes in wildlife, but I do, from time to time, find myself in the Mara region, and one cannot help but make photos of this amazing area, including animals.
Here are a few selections from a recent trip, and I often wonder: who is watching whom? The new business activity is on the edges of Nairobi, where the middle class is growing and real estate investment is in a frenzy.
In town there is a sense of another time. Every time you turn, a new set of bodies, different surroundings… on any corner. There seems to be no easy way to process them. As with most agricultural products in the developing world, a great deal of manual labour is needed. Cashew nuts are especially difficult, and the complex process provides much needed jobs for the surrounding communities.
Although parts of the process are mechanized the initial sorting of the product from the farm before removing the husk , the most efficient way is by hand. At many stages the cashews must be sorted for quality and size and a keen eye is still required, making the cashew truly the gem of nuts.
Cashew husks are returned to the furnaces as fuel for the steaming and drying process. As night descends on Mumbai, the office workers and day workers leave the city, but Mumbai is a city that never sleeps. Many of the small shops along the side streets continue their business, casting warm, welcoming light into the night. It is mostly men on the streets this time of day, often congregating at small kiosks to chat with friends and business owners.
I was drawn to these pockets of light and colour, more of the complex fabric that is India. His studio was at the back of his house in Toronto and was cluttered with projects in the works, abandoned pieces, and any manner of artistic evidence.
It was inspirational for me as I had never met an actual practising artist, only hobbyists. Uncle Mac spent an equal amount of time at his old schoolhouse more than years old outside of Creemore, Ontario, which he had made into a large open studio. It was a place of quiet for reflection and work.
Sculptor and painters mostly use natural light, and see the world through that one light source, usually the light created by the sun. He was particularly fascinated by the portraits done by Nadar. Form, the shape of things, was crucial to his sculpture work and was part of his own photography style.
He was able to see the artistic merits in most anything. Uncle Mac was somewhat technically challenged when it came to photography and the technical process these were the days of film, long before the digital revolution changed photography , but from him I learned the importance of composition, that an interesting image need not be technically perfect. The beauty of a painting or a piece of sculpture is not in the material used…. The end result is a work of art that tells us something, relays an emotion or causes personal reflection.
It is something greater than the sum of its components. These photos are my way of remembering him and his influence on me during those years I was fortunate enough to be in his company. John McCombe Reynolds at his Creemore schoolhouse. People thought the figure in the clouds in his painting is supposed to be God, but in fact it is Karl Marx.
This brought to mind the trip I made to Washington D. C for his first term inauguration, and the photos I made on that trip, photos that have been sitting in my archive for the last 8 years. I travelled with a group from Canada, members of Democrats Abroad, an American organization in the U. I boarded a bus in Toronto on the evening of January 19th, for the all night trip to D.
C, arriving in the morning on a cold clear day in Washington. The crowd for the inauguration was estimated at 2 million. It was a long way to the actual venue. I eventually found a place to stand, or more accurately a place found me when the crowd stopped moving.
I found myself near the base of the Washington monument. Large monitors were the only way to see the ceremony. At the time of the inauguration I was dividing my time between Canada and Kenya. After standing in the cold for many hours, walking many miles, the deed was done.
With smiles on their faces and hope in their hearts, the crowd dispersed. I found my group, trekked back to our bus, ready for another all night ride back to Toronto. All these years later I am so glad I made that trip.
Obama inauguration Been there, done that. David raises some interesting questions about the value of photography and how the nature of social media has accelerated the pace of photography, and does that increase in both producing and sharing photographs have a negative impact on the process itself.
I would say in many ways, yes. Even as we are making photographs, we are now predisposed to be considering when and how best to share them, get them into the photographic stream. As David says in his piece, we all like to share and welcome comments and messages that tell us others are looking at our images, but that has with it a sense of immediacy, a feeling that is contrary to some of the reasons we make photographs, and art, in general.
There is also the quiet consideration of images where for a time they are just resting, waiting to be discovered. For most of us it is the landscape, escape from distraction. Arrival is usually around midday and the area is covered with tourists, visitors and travellers. As the noon sun beat down on the mountains, cameras were ablaze in less than dramatic lighting conditions. I opted to find a shady spot behind a wall within the ruins , and rest while I waited for the light to change.
By late afternoon when the sun started to drop the thousands of people were gone, few spending the night at lodging nearby. As I began another walk through the ruins I was keenly aware that there was almost no one else around, perhaps a few in the distance, so for the most part I was alone. A solo, meditative moment, with no concern for the after what will I do with this image.
The photograph shows the silence, the calm. On the staircase lower right sits a lone figure, thus establishing scale.
When I was not in my temporary studio making portraits I was out on the land, travelling by snow machine, sleeping in a tent, trying to capture the vastness, the subtlety of the landscape. I learned about portraits by photographing his busts. Sculpting requires meditation, putting a project aside at times to allow for consideration or reworking. Mac was a landscape painter, too, and painters have such a strong sense of the delicacies of the landscape.
Again, a slow process sometimes to get the vision onto the canvas. So I often thought of him when looking at the arctic, trying to compose, to see.
Soft light on an overcast day, gentle pastel colour. I could spend a long time in one spot, appreciating the quiet. As many of the early images were film, time would be taken to pour over contact sheets, considering each frame as film was precious and expensive.
It all took time. The same process of looking, seeing, and contemplating occurs everywhere. The photo below was taken in Kenya, on the road to Lake Magadi.
I would always stop at this spot, breathe deeply, take a quiet moment. I did this a number of times before I made this image, always waiting for the right day when the photo would appear before me. They are shared when the time is right.
We must not always cave to the pressure that one must share quickly. I know many successful photographers who do very little social media, bucking the trend.
What is paramount is making good, or important, images and maintaining balance in your life. Views of Nairobi…… I never tire of photographing Nairobi, all of its different layers, points of view. It is an interesting mix of old and new, some parts remaining the same, some ever-changing. Each of these photographs has had a different treatment because each photograph of Nairobi brings a different feeling, a different texture.
I think the last 2 images show the extremes of Nairobi: a man crossing the new roadway with his mkokoteni hand cart , and construction workers on their way to build office towers. Lake Elementaita. Matatu, Mt. Longonot, storm approaching. Layers, Rift Valley. Longmont on the horizon. Curio shop, Rift Valley escarpment. Trucks, Rift Valley escapement. Mirror view, Rift Valley escarpment.