Mexico trip inspires new perspective for Frisco photographer
Special to the Daily
Summit County photographer Todd Powell will show his latest work at the Breckenridge Theater Gallery this month starting Saturday. The exhibit, made possible by the Breckenridge Arts District, opens at 4 p.m. and features an interesting visual departure from the landscape subjects and compositions the Frisco photographer has created in Colorado over the last decade.
Powell shot the 12 pieces to be featured during a 2010 visit to the colorful towns of San Miguel de Allende and Guanajuato in Mexico, a trip he made with a photographer friend over the mountains in a rental car after attending a mutual friend’s wedding on Mexico’s coast. They spent their days wandering the towns’ cobblestone streets from dusk to dark, observing and taking photographs.
“With my senses inundated by the bright colors favored by residents to brighten up their community and delineate properties from each other, my eye was drawn away from the obvious scenes usually photographed in foreign locales,” Powell said. “I found myself drawn to abstractions in the colors, shapes and textures of the scenes. My subconscious visual instincts framed and flattened the elements … before me as I explored these towns with my mind in a state of chromatic abstraction.”
All of the Mexico pieces are “two-dimensional and flat, and that’s very atypical of the way I shoot things,” said Powell, who has photographed people, adventure sports and travel for advertising, magazines and corporate publications around the world during his decades-long career as a publication photographer. Their initial display has been well-received in his Main Street Frisco gallery.
The trip was a perspective-shifter for Powell, as he returned home seeing familiar landscapes in a whole new dimension, so to speak.
“Since this creative exercise in Mexico, these compositional elements have carried over to my recent landscape work back here in the Colorado High Country,” he said.
A visit to Saturday’s opening of Chromatic Abstractions is certain to shed light on the recent evolution of his work, the Mexico pieces being harbingers of what is to come in Powell’s Colorado photography as well.
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