Fine Art Photography Daily

Michael Massaia: Deep In A Dream – Sheep Meadow

1-deep in a dream - sheep meadow-2014Summers in New York can be debilitating–the heat and humidity slay even the young and energetic. Photographer Michael Massaia has a new series, Deep in a Dream-Sheep Meadow, that captures New Yorkers finding relief in the cool of Central Park, photographed in states where they are most vunerable. With this series, Micahel continues his examination of New York City, capturing the ordinary and translating it into something quite extraordinary.  He is a master of his craft and his photographic seeing is remarkable.

Born in New Jersey, Michael Massaia is a fine art Photographer and Printmaker who has spent the past nine years documenting areas and objects that never extend to far from his front door. Isolation, disconnection, and an attempt to put a spotlight on the ordinary is the constant in all of his work. Michael specializes in large format black and white film image capture, and large format Platinum printing, Silver Gelatin Printing, as well as digital image capture and printmaking. All of his images are true “one shot” scenes (his images are never composited from multiple exposures). Michael works alone and is the sole craftsman from the instant the negative is exposed to the moment the final print is made.2-deep in a dream - sheep meadow-2014

Deep In A Dream – Sheep Meadow

“Deep In A Dream – Sheep Meadow” is a portfolio that I started in 2006 but ultimately shelved because of my discomfort taking such intimate and vulnerable pictures of people while they were completely unaware. Subsequently I created a portfolio entitled “Deep In A Dream – Central Park” from 2007-2014 which documented the park at it’s most desolate hours (void of any people which is a common theme in most of my portfolios).

In 2012 I restarted the “Deep In A Dream – Sheep Meadow” portfolio and while my discomfort was still high I figured a way to capture and print the images that made me determined to finish the portfolio.
My goal with the portfolio was to capture people in what I considered to be perfect unassuming poses(poses that could never be posed). I shot all of the images very close to the subject while they were sunbathing or sleeping in Central Park’s Sheep Meadow (usually only a few feet away) and would simply wait for the moment when the subject appeared to almost leave there own body.
I used seven different cameras for the portfolio raging from 8″x10″ view camera to old digital cameras that I hacked up. I handmake gold toned silver gelatin prints for all of the images where the surrounding grass is severely “burnt in” to isolate and give the look of suspension to the subject. The majority of the images were created in Central Park’s Sheep Meadow, while a few were created in other small parks around the city.

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