17 Mar Megan Ferrell and the American discovery of detail
Auscultation of the Photographic Beat.
The rhythm of the heart seems to increase incessantly with the number of clicks of a camera; the more the clicks, the more the heart rate increases. After a photoshoot, the passionate photographer feels exhausted and satisfied, as after a run by the sea, as after making love.
The power a photographer has in her hands is immense. Through her camera, she translates dynamic reality into a static image. Like all forms of visual art, a college education can help train the photographer to make a moment immortal, but the processing time is different compared to sculpture or painting. Although the Impressionists had already tried to describe the immortality of reality through en plein air painting, the Futurists by recreating movement, and the Abstract Expressionists had conveyed the immediacy of the gesture, without apparent virtuosity or superstructures through action painting, it is photography that possesses the true instantaneity of realization. That analog or digital diaphragm can open a world to us or close it in one click.
To Make a Rainbow you Need a Vase: Megan’s Fantastic World.
Today we have the pleasure of interviewing Megan Ferrell. A graduate of the prestigious Parson School of Design in New York, Megan is an award-winning creative director and highly regarded photographer with over 25 years of experience, with a variety of shows and exhibitions to her credit. Blonde hair and blue eyes (green, as she likes to specify) Megan is the living image that we Europeans have of the United States and of Americans.
Yet Megan’s all-American beauty does not remain confined to the exterior. She harbors an analytical and playful spirit towards the surrounding world that leads her to observe details that the masses frequently overlook. Megan Ferrell’s photography is able to extrapolate rainbows from a glass vase and streams of fiery red lava from the cockpit of a car. The ability of American artists and photographers, unlike European ones who have a more decadent approach to art linked to the classical world, is the ability to extract beauty from a common object: from the fender of a car, from the simple reflection of a lake. It evokes the freshness of a characteristic that all children possess, but only great artists maintain. Here are our questions.
What are the characteristics that a good photographer must have?
I believe that the eye is the most important characteristic of a good photographer. Your unique view is what will set you apart from others. Being able to accurately capture what you see so the world can see it too is also important. Sometimes I can’t achieve that but it’s OK. Perhaps the subject is not meant to be viewed in another way. My approach is more organic and less dependent on technology and equipment.
I don’t retouch or alter my photographs as a rule. Wonderful things can be done with digital technology and that is an art in itself.
It’s what I do for a living. But I believe there is a greater artistic challenge in not relying on that technology to create a great photograph. The true photographic talent is in the artist’s eye. I also think you have to keep your mind open and bereceptive at any given time to things you might not have planned or seen coming.
What prompted you the first time to pick up your camera and take your first picture?
Taking photographs was always part of my childhood. My parents owned several cameras. My favorite was their Polaroid Instamatic camera. I was in awe of the immediate result of it. I can still recollect the distinct smell of the film developing. My mother was always very creative and took great photographs. She greatly influenced me. When I went to Parson School of Design, I was taught the more technical side of photography and then I truly fell in love with it. I loved being in the darkroom and developing the photos that I had taken that day on the streets of NYC. We would meet in a different neighborhood every week and observe with our cameras. I began to know and see New York City in a very different way that has stayed with me to this day.
Which subjects do you prefer to photograph?
Much of my photographic and creative inspiration comes from seeing the abstract form in ordinary objects, landscapes, nature, and anything else that catches my eye. I also try to create a unique perspective that others may miss in everyday life.
I love wandering around wherever I am to find these images. I often end up with wonderful photographs from the most unexpected places.
Who is Megan Ferrell?
Megan Ferrell is an award-winning creative director with over 25 years of experience in the professional art world. She is a graduate of the prestigious Parson School of Design in New York City. Megan specializes in advertising, marketing/brand development, photography, collateral/print design, and digital media strategy. Megan held various positions in the corporate world in New York City. She decided to strike out on her own and ran an award-winning design business for 15 years. In 2009 Megan launched an online retail candy business called Suckerborne. It has gained national attention with appearances on The Today Show, NBC News CT, and The Huffington Post.
Megan’s photography has been exhibited in many local galleries, as well as at the Sheila Aronson Gallery in NYC. She has also been invited to be part of a photography exhibit at Art Basel Miami. In 2019, two of her photographs were selected as finalists in the annual Robert Mondavi Beaujolais Nouveau wine label competition. She is also a member of areaartist.com, a website for artists to showcase their work.