Showcasing the Arts

Jan./Feb. 2016 Featured Artist:
Walter Roycraft


Walter Roycraft Since moving to Kentucky in 1981, Walter Roycraft has fallen in love with Kentucky’s landscapes. For as long as I can remember, I have always loved photography. Photographing lizards and chipmunks at my parents’ summer home in South Jersey, getting my first speeding ticket racing to the Barnegat Lighthouse to catch the light of the rising sun or in the beautiful Catskill mountains in New York State, this was my childhood that imprinted my soul. I was uncompromising in my vision, once refusing to take a photo of my Mom that my Dad asked me to take on a family trip to San Francisco because I didn’t think it would make a good shot.

It was only logical, after not liking my first year in college, to study at The New York Institute of Photography. I went on to work as an assistant in a large commercial studio in New York City. I was hooked!

After moving to Kentucky in 1981, I started my business full time. My work these days is a mix of architectural photography and fine art landscapes. Somehow, at the same time, they are very similar yet very different. I am very much in love with the Kentucky landscape. There is no question that our rock strewn creeks, waterfalls and gorges are unparalleled. But I also find much beauty and tremendous value in scenes we fly by on our way somewhere: the fog hanging in a valley, rolling hills with bales of hay, a barn that’s seen better days, cows grazing or tobacco in the field. This is inward beauty that spills out for us to soak in. I should also say that as a Christian whose belief is that the natural world is created by a loving God, I find much pleasure in photographing His creation.

When I am at a location I take many things into consideration. Should the camera be elevated or down low? What is the main subject matter? What do I need to eliminate from the camera’s eye? Should the lighting be soft and low in contrast or intense and direct? Is it good now or should I come back another day? I always use a very good tripod, a cable release and other considerations assuring little or no camera vibration so the digital negative is as sharp as possible.

Ansel Adams, one of the great landscape photographers, said “The negative is comparable to the composer's score and the print to its performance. Each performance differs in subtle ways.” With digital, I spend much time tweaking the digital negative by changing variables, like contrast, exposure and cropping. Many times I walk away from the computer and then come back to see a few more things needing to be done. Once I am happy with the digital negative I then make the print, usually having to go back and adjust something I never saw on the computer screen. After many back and forth changes I am finally pleased with the print and am very pleased to present them to you.

Walter Roycraft
Nicholasville, Ky.
Telephone: 859-619-1891


Page last updated: April 28, 2016
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