In 1994, I created black and white, still-life “portraits” of a red pepper and Brussels sprout that resemble the back of a bronze nude. My "vegetarian nudes" were inspired by Edward Weston’s curvaceous Pepper No. 30; but, I did not visit the grocery store with a nude in mind. I was simply searching for interesting shapes to photograph. So… why did I see the human figure in this inanimate object?
Twenty years later, through a new body of work, I found the answer: pareidolia - a psychological phenomenon involving a stimulus (visual or aural) wherein the mind perceives a familiar pattern of something where none actually exists. Common examples are perceived images of animals, faces, or objects in cloud formations and seeing the “man” in the Moon.
At the intersection of gastronomy and geometry, still-life and biology, whimsical and grotesque, Convergence explores pareidolia through an in-camera, digital mirror effect. While rotating the camera above different foods, a live, Rorschachian symmetry allows me to search for and create demons, angels, parasites, masks, and otherworldly artifacts, flora and fauna. The results of these explorations are not just an artistic journey through my mind's eye; each image is an opportunity for the viewer to reflect and recognize the psychology behind the skewed relationships our society has with the foods we prefer, produce, consume and waste.
Now, more than ever, humans are communicating, visually, with still pictures, animated GIFs and digital video, via social media apps and the pocket media machines they call "smart phones".
In early 2012, due to the advanced optics in his iPhone 4s, (he started-out with an iPhone 3G,) Jim began to take Instagram photography seriously - including revisiting and re-envisioning his DSLR imagery from previous years. As the popularity of Instagram grew, so did Jim's passion for photography - and his ability to elevate the ordinary with this simple tool.