It was a Kodak brownie that began the romance. For fine-art photographer David Williams it was his first camera, given to him by his mother and grandmother, that sparked his life-long passion for the medium. What, for this award-winning artist, makes a photograph powerful? “The viewer must sense, that it was essential for the photographer to express some fundamental need, that the subject must be photographed!” The artist must feel the urgency and have the drive and instinct to capture that particular subject, image, that ephemeral moment, frozen in time. He or she must be able to communicate this powerful need to the viewer. Williams states, “I approach this craft with the aim of creating images that I hope are emotionally engaging. So that even someone unfamiliar with the medium can look at a print and never tire of it.”
David Williams is a resident of Far Rockaway, born in Brooklyn. His specialty is black and white photography. He still prints in the traditional darkroom, using highly saturated 100% silver bromide paper that David says “displays the characteristics of bromide papers of the past, deep rich maximum blacks that lean toward a cool purple sepia. The paper also displays a mysterious illusion of space, substance and luminosity.” He works with a large format 8x10 wooden camera that he built, resulting in a large negative that allows for “a beautiful continuous tone and depth.” Mostly self-taught, he credits his exposure to masters like Paul Strand and Fred Picker for teaching him much of the essentials of his art. Williams’ rich, dramatic photographs have been exhibited in venues that include the Smithtown Gallery, the Metropolitan Transit Authority Corporate Art Collection and sTudio 6 Gallery, Fort Tilden. He will be one of five artists in the Rockaway Artists Alliance’s “Black and Light on Silver” exhibition in February.
Spotlight On Art is now a monthly column in “The Wave.” It will showcase the careers of Rockaway artists of all disciplines. If you know of artists or artist groups that would make interesting subjects, please contact me through “The Wave” at: firstname.lastname@example.org.