Art Spotlight: Stephen Scott Gross

Art Spotlight: Stephen Scott Gross



Through the Macro Lens

See his work in The Woven Tale Press Vol. IV #5

Stephen Scott Gross has worked for over two decades as professional photographer with on a variety of advertising, fine art and editorial projects. He is also the owner of Brooklyn Editions, a fine art printing studio.

All of Gross’ images are printed in his studio on an Epson 11880, a 64” printer which is the standard for fine art printing. Its wide color range, incredibly fine resolution and archival Ultrachrome K3 pigment inkset  are combined with the finest papers in the world from Hahnemühle, which is one of the oldest paper mills in the world and a pioneer in digital coatings.

“Photographers and artists have continuously found beauty in natural forms, flowers being a popular and eventually cliché choice. For me, these plant forms are an entry point to an unknown–I am less concerned with romanticizing or dwelling on the obviously sensual qualities, than in divining something hidden and surprising.

Photography exists at the meeting point of art and science. As I limit what I see, using a macro lens with a minute area of view and a depth of field as thin as a strand of hair, an infinite sense of dimension is revealed. An alternate reality becomes visible. It is not a process of pre-visualization, but simply discovery. Much as the vast solar system resembles the tiniest atoms, I find patterns, similarities and, of course, endless questions. The closer I observe, the more mysterious things become. The more I think I know about perception, the greater the power of the unexpected.

I am drawn to plants and flowers, not so much for their apparent beauty, but for the infinite variety of colors, shapes, textures and character. I am drawn to the edge of abstraction and essential forms through photographing what I can unlock and transform. Looking through a macro lens, I step into a new perspective where contours and details emerge and dissolve. The new dimension is intimate, sensual and often unreal. Scale and perception are distorted. Features emerge from simple shapes, and complex forms melt into transparency as I move the lens a fraction of an inch. Figures show up like an x-ray. Outlines become distinct. Colors harmonize and blend, and give way to dissonant combinations then merge back again. Each image is a moment in which I feel something obscure and has been revealed anew. I simply explore these infinite ephemeral forms.”

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