Thursday, July 18, 2013

Donald Chambers: Elegant Compulsion


'My landscapes now come in the form of the human body. I love the male form and consider it an amazing honor when a model allows me to capture such a private part of their life.'

Earlier this year, I was fortunate to be able to profile the work of Nashville photographer Donald Chambers (The Replenisher). As I have often said before, it is usually a single image that begins my love of an artists work. With Donald, it was the image of Joseph, standing by the piano that I used above as 'pic of the day'.

When I first start a profile, I need the images to be chosen first, as it is the visual that dictates the direction of the text and my words. With Donald, I began focusing the piece around the image of Joseph, but quickly got distracted with all of the other captures and models on his MM page. In the end, I decided it was a good idea to focus on Matt who became the inspiration for the text in the first piece. I made sure however, to ensure Donald was supportive of me doing a follow-up with the image of Joseph, and another set of images of Ryley that I equally loved. Donald generously agreed!

When writing the first piece, I used the phrase elegant compulsion to describe the pull that draws Donald to his passion of photographing the male form. The phrase stuck with me because most people use the word compulsion in association with something negative. An addition or the draw towards something destructive. I loved how adding elegant in front, totally changed the meaning to something erotic and beautiful. Most compulsions, even the harmful ones, begin as something pleasurable. The trick, and it isn't easy, is ensuring that it stays that way.


Donald's images stay that way. They don't go too far, nor are they over the top. The goal is not to hit the viewer over the head but to create a feel of erotic elegance with the beauty of the male form.

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