In the Spring of 2013 Eric Serritella asked me to shoot his work for an exhibition catalog, to accompany his one-man exhibit at Jason Jacques Gallery in New York. Eric does truly amazing clay sculpture of a style known as Tromp l’Oeil, producing ceramic sculptures which resemble wood, whether living, dead or charred, with breathtaking realism and attention to the finest detail. Over several sessions with Eric I shot nearly 40 pieces of his work, including many close-up detail shots. The finished book includes many of these photos, including the cover.
My photo of a piece of Ben Dyer’s work on a recent (2012) cover of American Style. Ben is one of the nation’s premier goldsmiths, and it has been my honor and privelege to shoot his work for most of the last decade.
This is a photo of work by Kathleen Master, gracing the cover of Sushine Artist in 2012. Kathleen does a variety of very creative multi-media and shows in a number of top shows and galleries. Several other of my photos of her work were featured prominently along with the article about Kathleen.
I’be shot a lot of work over the last several years for Peter Ross. Peter is one of America’s premier traditional metalworkers. He was the senior metalsmith for Colonial Williamsburg for 20 years. Peter produces fine reproductions of early American and colonial period European functional objects. Several are seen here in a 2011 edition of Early American Life.
I have had the distinct pleasure to shoot Mark Hewitt’s pottery for the last decade. Mark is one of the finest and most recognized traditional potters currently working in America. His work is in collections around the country and beyond, and has been featured in many prominent museums. This is a publication we did for his 2010 exhibit at the Ogden Museum in New Orleans. Mark had 14 of his largest pots shipped from their collections to my studio. We spent two days shooting them before they left here for the exhibit at the Ogden.
In the fall of 2007 I was asked to come to Boston to photograph folk art and fine art for the Massachusettes Cultural Council, in conjunction with the National Heritage Museum in Lexington, Massachusettes. Over the course of 10 very challenging days I shot over 100 pieces of art including sculpture, ironwork, wood, glass, painting and other media. The resulting images illustrate a folio-sized book featuring more than 150 of my images, published in the Spring of 2008 by the Massachusettes Cultural Council, in conjunction with an exhibition of the actual pieces at the museum.
Awarded Second Place, Exhibition Catalog Category, by the New England Museum Association Publication Competition, 2008
Jason— “Everyone raves about your photos. We have 15 of the Keepers craft artists demonstrating at this year’s Lowell Folk Festival. We sent them some of your photos to help publicize the event. The newspaper editor said that in the ten years they’ve been doing a supplement to the festival, these were the best photos they had ever had. “
— Maggie Holtzberg
In the summer of 2005 the North Carolina Museum of Art asked nationally-recognized potter Mark Hewitt to curate an exhibit on the history of the North Carolina pottery tradition from its earliest roots to the present day. The museum also wished to produce the usual catalog to go with the exhibit. Mark, however, had a grander vision and convinced the museum to join him in producing a very polished and lavishly illustrated hardbound book to accompany the exhibit.
I had been shooting Mark’s work for several years so he invited me to do the photography for the book. Over the next several months we photographed nearly 100 pots, both at my studio and at such places as the McKissock Museum in Columbia, South Carolina, the Ackland Museum in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, the Museum of Early Southern Decorative Arts in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, and the Smithsonian in Washington DC.
The finished book contains more than 150 photos, many of them presented full-page. In addition, the museum blew up twelve of the images to 6′ x 8′ for display during the exhibition. The book was published by UNC Press in conjunction with The North Carolina Museum of Art, authored by Mark Hewitt and Nancy Sweezy.
“A handsome heavy book, thanks largely to Jason Dowdle’s gorgeous photographs. . . . The writing is poetic, persuasive, and at times, almost polemical.” —North Carolina Historical Review
“(The) authors provide expert introductions to the state’s pottery as a whole and to the significant benchmarks of its cultural history. . . . Jason Dowdle created special photography for The Potter’s Eye that examines the form and surfaces of each pot in ways not previously expressed in books on ceramics history. This volume is worth owning for its visual beauty alone.” —Winterthur Portfolio
“Exquisitely illustrated. . . . [with] incredibly detailed surface shots.” —Ceramics Monthly
“More than an exhibition catalog; it is a collaborative work of art.” —Western Folklore
The many powerful, full page, color photographs of the exhibits taken by Jason Dowdle . . . immediately grasp our attention. —The Log Book
“This exciting work succeeds in its mission to ‘signal and celebrate the artistry of North Carolina’s greatest production potters,’ but this work has accomplished much more–it has challenged and tutored scholars and collectors to view the stoneware of North Carolina with a potter’s eye.” —Journal of Folklore Research
This was my first big publication of any of my craft photography. Mark’s work has been featured in many magazines and publications over the years. This is the 2004 cover of American Craft, America’s premier craft magazine. American Craft had decided to feature an article on Mark and his work and he asked me to shoot some images specifically for the article. The editor at American Craft said it had not been their intention to give Mark’s work such prominence, including the cover, but when they saw the quality of the images they decided to give him not only the cover but several full-page spreads in the interior. Of course, it is the quality of Mark’s work that made it possible!