SIGNATURE ARTIST MEMBERMadeline Duval
My most successful images have been photographed when I was alone, breathing in the scene and immersing myself in the tranquility and solitude. My wish for the viewer is to imagine themselves in the scene, viewing it as though they are the only person to witness the beauty of the moment. I rarely photograph people in my landscapes – preferring to think no one else has been there before me.
I am fascinated with light, shadow and the challenge of creating depth in my images. A beach photographed when the sun is high creates a scene void of individual grains of sand. I prefer to light my scenes with early morning or late afternoon sun when details are most visible. As a fine art and portrait photographer, my challenge is taking a three-dimensional subject and recreating it’s reality on a two dimensional surface by using beautiful lighting and composition to bring out the form and shape.
To be a successful landscape and nature photographer, it takes patience, a love of the cold weather as well as a tolerance for hot weather as well as the clothing required, a healthy fear of ticks, bugs, snakes and large mammals, and a love of the beauty nature provides us.
The greatest thrill in my career has been to photograph the polar bears of America’s Arctic. Many days were spent on the Beaufort Sea in Alaska observing how polar bears live, love and survive in an ever-warming climate. I’ve photographed the love between mothers and their cubs, sibling relationships, and skirmishes between adults. I’ve witnessed polar bears waiting for the water to freeze so they can end their unintentional 4-month fast and hunt for seals. Through my photography, I hope to illustrate the severity of the situation in the Arctic for not only the polar bears and Arctic sea mammals, but also for the indigenous people who live there.