Illuminating Landscapes

On Saturday night, I stumbled through the front door at 4:02am.

I wasn’t returning from a night of hard partying. I wasn’t stumbling due to any sort of intoxication. I was simply exhausted, both mentally and physically.

Why was I so exhausted?
Well, 18-hour work days will do that to ya.

Since 10:00 am Saturday morning, Brad and I had been working on a little project. We call it “Illuminated Landscapes.”

I talked about the very first photo shoot of this series in a previous entry, Painting with Light, but I didn’t explain what we were going to do with these images.

This is what we’ve been working on:

Photograph from the

This picture, and about 80 of it’s friends are sitting on my hard drive, just waiting to be presented to the world. They form a photographic series of work that Brad and I have titled, Illuminated Landscapes.

I find myself surprized that I’m talking about this project at this time. This was originally planned out as a late-spring project, but we had something fall through last minute. This meant that Brad and I both had a big hole in our schedules. Rather than wasting the day catching up on to-do lists and household chores, we decided to buckle down and have a marathon work session, where we simply start a project, and we don’t stop until the work is done.

So, on Friday evening, I made the long trek up North, and on Saturday morning, I was in Brad’s studio, tweaking a ton of photos, getting them ready for print. Once that was out of the way, we started the important work: book design and layout.

It was nerd heaven: 2 computers, 4 monitors, abundant caffeine, and anamanaguchi on the speakers.
We plugged away at it for hours, and by 3am, we were very happy with what we saw.

We uploaded our content, and placed our order. In about two weeks, our very first photo book should arrive. If it passes inspection and meets our standards we will make it available for anyone to pick up a copy.

Presenting photography on its own is new for me. Photography has been a part of my artistic practice for a long time, but always as a starting place, not a final object. I have shot bands, album art and portraits for clients and friends, but I have never presented my own photography as finished art. I am very excited to see how it works out.

Rather than presenting Illuminated Landscapes in a fine-art gallery setting, we have chosen to have it printed as an 80-page hard-cover photo book.

The vivid colour, unconventional lighting, and long exposure times create some very unique imagery. These photographs have a surreal, otherworldly look to them. They are the stuff of fantasy; they look like something that would be seen in an enchanted forest, or on an alien world.

I believe they function better as a series of photographs than they do as single, isolated images. Presenting them as a book allows viewers to pick it up and casually flip through the collection, stopping when they come across something that strikes their interest. The photos could be thought of as material to facilitate daydreams, or visual accompaniment for music, or even a source of visual weirdness for an otherwise mundane environment.

I look forward to holding the hard copy in my hands, flipping through the pages, and seeing my work in print. And I look forward to presenting this project to the world.

Published by

Kyle Clements

Kyle Clements is a Toronto-based artist and nerd. During his thesis at the Ontario College of Art and Design, Kyle began working on his Urban Landscapes series, a body of work that aims to capture the energy and excitement of life in the fast-paced urban environment. After graduating from OCAD in 2006, Kyle spent a year living in Asia to gather source material and experience in a different kind or urban environment. His work is vibrant and colourful. Whether painting the harsh Northern landscape, or capturing the overwhelming buzz of life in the city, his acrylic paintings hover between representation and abstraction.