Larry Chait

By Larry Chait

As far back as I can remember I’ve found it natural to observe the world in a detached, objective manner.  I think this is what led me to pursue a career in science.  It is also responsible for my fascination with photography, which goes back more than 25 years, when I started doing my own film processing and printing.

For many years I had abandoned photography, in part due to a gradual deterioration in my vision from a congenital disorder.  Eventually, certain factors conspired to bring me back to it.  First, two corneal transplants gave me near normal visual acuity.  Second, I decided to give up my career as a research scientist.  A third factor was the advent of digital photography and the power and creative potential it brought to the medium.  Now I devote myself full-time to photography.

I care little about the manifest subject matter of my photos; I’m attracted to anything with dramatic light and shadow, unusual textures, colors, forms and patterns.  Yet there seem to be several elements common to much of my work.  I find myself experimenting much as I did when I was a scientist, systematically varying camera, lighting, and software parameters and observing the effects.  I like to work in series, categorizing the variety found in the natural world.  I enjoy taking images to the brink of abstraction.  I don’t like to impose a particular style on my work; I try to let each image speak for itself and tell me how it “wants” to look.