This piece is one of my most popular ones I’ve done. Together with “Soul of Columbia” it was beautifully printed and framed and on display at the South Carolina State Fair 2017.
Something about this piece seems to grab people’s attention. It speaks to all of us about the duality of human nature, the beautifully spiritual side of humanity combined with the darkness that resides in us all, usually hidden behind a mask.
The mask in this picture is a 12th Century plague mask, complimenting the setting of a Gothic cathedral.
The process used to create this iconic piece is typical of my work, as it was one of the first steps I took in exploring this style which can continue to be seen throughout most of my more recent art. After starting with an on-set portrait of the model with studio lighting, shot on a black backdrop, I digitally created and blended all of the background imagery, as well as the spiritual elements such as the overlaid crucifix. From there it was about continuing to mold and shape and balance the tones and light around the scene until I was happy with the finished product.
Once finished, the work was printed on archival paper by master printer Bill Barley of South Carolina, and framed by Gold Line Framing in West Columbia, South Carolina.
I am very happy to say that two versions of this piece, each slightly different from one another have both sold. The first is right here in Columbia, South Carolina and the second was just recently sold to a new collector in California who viewed my work on display at the SC State Fair this year.
Epistemology – 32″ x 28″ digital composite
Dan Newbanks/Alchemist Imaging
How do we know what we know? How much can we rely on our senses? Taste, touch, smell, hear, see. All our experience with the world around us are processed electrical signals received by our brains. What if what is real, is not real at all? What if the electrical signals are not received from our senses, but from some …where … something else? How do YOU know?
…the only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars and in the middle you see the blue centerlight pop and everybody goes “Awww!” – Jack Kerouac
Beauty is so subjective, and yet here we are, with another opportunity to celebrate the beauty and talent of the South. Sometimes you just know, when you look at someone, you can see it in their eyes. From the past that haunts them, to the future that lays open in front of them, you know that in this moment, it is the beauty that has the whole thing hanging in a balance. And when that moment is captured in one afternoon, it can be magical. Enjoy.