The new exhibit upstairs at Boothbay Region Art Foundation features color images Eva McDermott captured on Lofoten Island, Norway and Isle of Skye, Scotland – digitally and with film. McDermott was hanging the show on Saturday, April 3, so knowing where she was, I had to stop in.
Eva says she travels for the sake of photographing beautiful places. Eva chose Norway and Scotland for this show because “the light was amazing” there. From a collection of 2,000 of Norway alone, Eva selected 26 images half film, half digitally shot. This is the first time this group of photos has been shown in Maine.
There are 26 photographs, half digital and half film, in this exhibition. Some were shot multiple times using different filters – something photographers know all about.
Eva is a self-taught photographer who printed B&W and color photos in her own darkroom. Those are the days she shot with that first camera, the Minolta, and 4X5 cameras. Nowadays she shoots with digital cameras – well, mostly.
The images of Norway were taken using both mediums during a trip April-May 2014-ish. Eva estimated shooting a couple thousand photographs on that trip. Eva captures fishing villages, dramatic seascapes and magical landscapes, waiting out inclement weather and/or time to photograph a captivating scene or subject in the perfect light and then pairing it with one or two others to tell a story.
A stunning example is the photo taken on Scotland’s Isle of Skye entitled “Magical Quiraing, Trotternish Ridge” taken after waiting through rain and snow when the sun broke through the clouds casting the perfect light. When you look at this photograph, it almost doesn’t seem like a real place. It must be a magical realm that only the most fortunate of visitors are able to see …
Then there are the three photos hung on adjacent walls, just to the left as you walk into the exhibit room. Flakstad Beach, Lofoten, Norway is where the “Sand Star” and “Bubbling Sands” photos were created. Eva explained that the sand is so soft, that the incoming tide causes the water to come bubbling up through the sand creating lovely imagery. “Sand Star” has a clear celestial appearance, while “Bubbling Sands” looked like horseshoe crabs to me.
The clear, pure beauty of Norway’s waters in these photographs is cause for celebration … clean oceans are precious as well as stunningly beautiful. And the colorful, and I mean colorful, beach rocks in the photo, “Findhorn Pebbles in Morfay, Scotland,” will amaze. “It’s amazing,” said Eva, “the tide will pull the rocks out, and these are not small rocks, and then bring them back in again in piles on the beach. It’s on cloudy days that you get more color.” Sure must’ve been cloudy the day Eva shot that one.
Fishermen’s tales are told with ships, cod hanging out to dry, photos of the red cabins they call home when fishing; and the rest? The rest of the stories will spring from your imagination.
Eva hopes everyone enjoys her “photographic vision.” I say, how could they not?
You can see more of Eva’s work at www.evamcdermottphotography.com
Boothbay Region Art Foundation at 1 Townsend Ave. is also the venue for the 16th annual Maine Photography Show (and yes, Eva has a photo in this exhibit? too), in the main gallery. BRAF is open Thursday through Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
For more information about the 16th annual Maine Photography Show, visit https://mainephotoshow.org