I first saw Brian Hyrne‘s photography in posts on the 614 Facebook page but was lucky enough to catch his display at one of the RAW Columbus events earlier this year. His subtle use of lighting to create beautiful photos fascinated me. We started our interview online but just recently met at his house during one of his shooting sessions with the lovely model, Rebecca Flint.
Brian grew up in Upper Arlington and studied Business at 4 different colleges (beginning at The Ohio State University). Although he has never received his degree, that has not impeded his success in the retail/sales world. Starting a full-time career fairly early, he pursued a retail career for 14 years as a merchandise planner and buyer, got married and relocated to Chicago, Atlanta before returning to Columbus. After working for several retailers that went out of business, he became interested in sales and spent the next several years selling commercial fire protection systems. This really opened the door to meeting and working with some quality people. He then found himself volunteering part-time for Habitat for Humanity in the Atlanta area which led to yet an “additional” career interest in real estate. After another relocation, he soon became a licensed realtor in Ohio and, eventually, Florida (currently he does referral work as a realtor for Keller Williams in Dublin, OH). Whew! Quite a varied career!
Business, however, was not Brian’s only interest. He got enmeshed in photography at a VERY early age…shooting pictures since he was 5 years old and making his own movies by the time he was 10! However, his film-making career ended when they stopped making 8mm film…bummer! In high school, he took a few photography classes and was always interested in Visual Art and Drafting (Drafting, because I love perspective work) but never had any advanced education in photography. Instead, he started following the work and techniques of those who inspired him at different stages in his life.
Originally known as Brian Matthew Photography, he has migrated into Brian M Photo on most social media sites and as dare2barephoto (www.dare2barephoto.com) for his Fine Art work. Work with body photography started about 5 years ago because of Brian’s interest in the human form and although he does work mostly with female models, he has photographed male models and would like to expand to include more of this in his portfolio. Although he makes a point of having fun during his shoots, he takes his work seriously and is proud of his reputation within the modeling and photography communities. Because he treats all models respectfully and doesn’t mix work with play, he has earned a back log of models wanting to be his subjects (I definitely picked this up from watching the shoot with Rebecca….a mutual respect that positively impacts all aspects of the sessions!) Currently, he does the majority of his shoots at his home but he has begun to explore finding a separate studio with the hopes of moving in the next year…should be a little easier for him since he’s a realtor, huh?
Some of his models are paid for their time but he also does lots of trade work where models are then given permission to use his published work to promote themselves and develop a portfolio. He also does ‘for hire’ work that does not usually get used in his portfolio because those clients prefer that with his busiest seasons for these jobs around Christmas and Valentine’s Day. He does all of his own work including Photoshop, editing, etc. with his prints up to 13″x9″. Recently, he has begun experimenting with canvas prints where he paints in the background to produce more unique works.
It was fascinating to watch him at work with Rebecca the day that I visited because I could actually experience his process. Although he often has ideas/concepts for each of his shooting sessions, most are rather organic with Brian and his model collaborating, brain storming and developing ideas for the look they both want to achieve. The chemistry between him and his models is important and very naturalistic…a real organic kind of process where he honors his models input mainly by using a mirror where models can watch their poses and make adjustments. He is meticulous about lighting because he prefers provoking images that can only be accomplished with the curves and shadows he gets with focal lighting.
He prefers to shoot mostly 2 genres of photography… Fine Art Landscape (for local coffee shop shows) and Contemporary Fine Art for art and gallery shows. But soon he may be crossing this line to have his first fine art/boudoir show in a coffee house! (I will tell you more about that later in the article). When asked about his aesthetic, he stated:
All of the artwork I produce is intended to provoke a feeling. With Landscape work, it is mostly about a feeling of “serenity”. With the Contemporary Fine Art, it varies… but body language, expression, and lighting are the 3 key things I look for to create that provocation of an emotion or mood. I try to stay away from too much digital post-processing in my work, but using different light modifiers as well as plain household items to “sculpt” light and the use of every materials or fabrics to add to the composition of an image.
My creative process has no boundaries… whether walking through Home Depot inspecting the potential use of normal building materials, or admiring the techniques and work of another artist at a show or festival. I am always looking for a way to enhance the creativity of my work with the use of materials, composition, or simply a change in perspective.
Some examples of how his work has been the basis for some other artists’ works:
He sells most of his art work at shows, whether it’s a landscape print showing at Starbucks or a Contemporary Fine Arts piece on display in a gallery , an art show or an event. He also does a lot of private client work, such as family photos and individual studio sessions. His work has been featured in the London Museum of Art and frequently has been asked by artists to use his photos as a foundation for their art. You can also purchase a selection of work for sale online on his artist page for Mac Worthington Gallery of Contemporary Art’s site (www.macworthington.com). Some pieces have sold from his deviantArt account, but not as much as he would like because he hasn’t tapped into that line of sales…something to work on for the future!
He has also begun to forge relationships with other photographers such as Jim Parker and David Ryan. These friends have helped and inspired him to learn more, experiment and pursue more avenues for promoting his art. He hopes that he can continue to strengthen these relationships and add more photographers to his circle of friends and colleagues…I’m sure that won’t be hard in this creative city!
Last year, he placed 2nd in the Revealed Columbus photo contest and has received many verbal accolades for his presentation at Shadowbox Live for the RAW Artist “Revolution” show in June….but that hasn’t stopped him from looking for that “Gold Star” award! As he strives for that, he continues to shoot and experiment as well as find other venues for his work.
Lots going on for Brian right now with this month being featured as solo artist at the NX Gallery (66 Parsons Ave, Columbus) and next month he will have his first fine art show at The Grandview Grind Coffee House (1423 Granvdview Ave, Columbus). The opening reception for this show will be shared when the final details get worked out so make sure to check back here in December!
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