23"H x 50"W
digitally manipulated photo assemblage
"I have a varied background; originally my emphasis was on graphic arts and I obtained my first college degree in this field. I became disillusioned with the basic nature of art for advertising sake and dropped out to become an organic gardener and cheese-maker. I raised goats also. But this became unfulfilling as I really longed for creative outlets and interactions. I then went back to college and got my second degree in fashion design at the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising in Los Angeles, California. I became quite fascinated with using fabrics in innovative ways which led me to work for several major corporations designing clothing concepts and products. I also briefly taught product design at Art Center College of Design in Pasadena California. Alas, I again became disillusioned with the corporate/academic climate and longed for something more creative. I have been making my current body of work with digitally manipulated photography for over three years now and find great satisfaction and excitement each day as I work. This is the perfect marriage of two dimensional graphic sensibilities and my need to create “things”. Because I create ephemeral assemblages to use in my photography, my desire to work three dimensionally is fulfilled also.
I recently had two pieces in Swarm Gallery's Digital Print Show; and at iDEAs 2006 (at the IDMAA convention in San Diego November 9-11, 2006 at National University, San Diego CA. IDMAA is the International Digital Media and Arts Association.
The Title of one of my pieces in the Swarm Gallery show (see image) is HeteRogamy (23"H x 50"W). It is a digitally manipulated photo assemblage. What does it mean? Well, it is part of my series Anomalies - things that deviate from what is standard, normal, or expected….In this series I strive to create images that evoke animated beings; completely made up life forms with personality.
I am also dealing with symmetry and all its symbolic references.
In general I am intrigued with parallel universes, space/time warps and other manifestations of altered, alternative realities. I am intrigued with the exterior/visible aspects of reality and how it manifests the interior, the hidden/unknown realm.
I begin by staging “landscapes” of a variety of objects, either man-made or of a natural nature; the set-ups are essentially ephemeral “sculptures”. I take digital photographs of these assemblages then alter the images using various drawing and photography software programs. I layer, re-color then re-manipulate even more until I’ve achieved my particular goal with the piece under development.
Working with my computer allows me to see in new ways; it allows me to be surprised by the outcome and the possibilities."
By Ellen Jantzen
Some background info on Ellen:
Born and raised in St. Louis Missouri, USA • Currently lives in Valencia California1992 Graduated Summa Cum Laude from FIDM(Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising), Los Angeles California