For ten years I’ve photographed artwork for artists in the Minneapolis & Saint Paul area. I’m also a web designer and email marketing developer. I’m located in the heart of Minneapolis’s Lakes District in Uptown. I have a dedicated studio set up to only photograph paintings. I don’t do portraits — I specialize exclusively in reproducing artwork. Back around the turn of the century, I was studying landscape oil painting with Joe Paquet. As a freelance website designer and photographer, I got the opportunity to build websites for the artists I met. It was then that I discovered how complicated photographing an oil painting is. Here’s the cool thing: I grew up in a print shop and worked in the darkroom after school running a half-ton process camera. So I had the skills & training to solve this problem. I reinvented the process with modern technology: developing proprietary techniques, building my own specialized equipment and custom ordering a landscape camera, specialized prime lens and studio lights for this highly specific service. One of my first jobs out of art school was working at a film separating company. They tested my color vision, not just the little flip book with color circles & numbers, this test was very specific. I found out I have perfect color vision, which is great for the high-end color correcting I do while documenting artwork. One of my great joys is that I get to meet great artists and enjoy their art up close. In galleries it’s so removed and framed. But in my line of work I see the artwork raw, freshly made and get to study it up close. I have to see the color harmonies and details so when I color-correct the photos I know what to look for. I learn so much from the established artists in their techniques, colors and brushwork. Students & new artists are really fun, I get to see them discover their style and refine it over time. I’ve always gone to galleries throughout my life and love art, this work allows me to learn and appreciate art on a totally different level.
- Stephanie J Ryan
- Norman Nelson