INTERIORS EXHIBITION - MARCH 8 - 22, 2014 - GALLERY 44, 401 RICHMOND ST. W., TORONTO

“Much of my life as a photographer has been spent in the process of peeling away the outer layers or the personas of the people that I photograph to find something deeper. Something with more meaning; something more essential than most of us could ever be in our day to day lives.  <br />
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“During the lead up to starting this series I felt a strong call to make some real photographs of real people. So the emphasis in these photographs is on the person, not on how the person sits in their environment. I am interested in exploring and revealing who people are, rather than what they do. This project has grown from the human thirst for depth, meaning and connection—that connection with others that goes beyond the surface into the interior landscape, where our real life is lived.<br />
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“To make photographs like these takes time, trust and sometimes very deep exchanges between people. It involves building relationship, even if the span of that relationship is measured in hours. During the conversations that happen in the evolution of this series, I am transformed as much, if not more, than the people I photograph. I am enriched and moved by hearing their life stories, their challenges, their hopes, and their dreams. I feel very grateful to all those who allowed me into their life and shared these images with us.<br />
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“My ‘subjects’ come to me through the many channels of, what Carl Jung calls, synchronicity. That is, the so called ‘chance’ meetings that happen in the streets, in cafés, during many of the community events that I photographed, and of course, meeting people where I teach. These are people who fascinate me for who they are—for their strengths, their courage, and their inner fire.”

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“Much of my life as a photographer has been spent in the process of peeling away the outer layers or the personas of the people that I photograph to find something deeper. Something with more meaning; something more essential than most of us could ever be in our day to day lives.

“During the lead up to starting this series I felt a strong call to make some real photographs of real people. So the emphasis in these photographs is on the person, not on how the person...
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Copyright Michael G. O'Brien


Keywords:
Portraits
Portraits black and white
documentary portraits
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Michael is known primarily for the intuitive, natural way that he photographs people and places. His formal portraits, as well as his travel and documentary images of people are all built on a foundation of trust and respect. Michael's work explores the themes of identity in the individual, the family and the community.

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