Every month, Feature Shoot’s Founder, Alison Zavos, handpicks three photographers to be part of our Reader Spotlight, with their work featured on our website, Instagram, and across both our newsletters (regular and special edition), landing in the inboxes of an estimated 80,000 photography professionals, including gallerists, publishers, collectors, and more. February’s winners are Mark Peterman, Jennifer Thoreson, and John Sanderson. While unique and varying, each touches on the power of memory, creating a common thread running throughout their work. Explore their projects below.
Since 2020, Mark Peterman has been constructing worlds of his own using miniature sets and props, blurring the lines between fact and fiction. Constructed Realities questions our understanding of the real and the imagined, drawing on scenes from film history and literature for inspiration. With a cinematic sensibility evocative of Gregory Crewdson, Peterman invites us to venture into the boundary line between memory and daydreams. In the artist’s words, each photograph represents “a suspended moment in time, a void, where the unknown looms.”
In Testament, Jennifer Thoreson draws from her childhood in a Southern Baptist household and her empathetic nature to explore the intersections of anxiety, grief, faith, and comfort. “To create the work, I sought out and rented a small house, and worked exclusively within it over the course of one year,” the artist says. “The house itself is a direct reference to the home I grew up in; I wanted to re-activate and re-imagine the space where my understanding of faith is rooted.
“For each photograph, I fabricated site-specific installations and sculptures using biblically symbolic materials such as sheep’s wool, clay, and human hair. All twelve photographs are intricately staged and constructed within the rooms of the house, together with human subjects and sentimental objects from my 1980s childhood home.”
John Sanderson hits the railroad track and takes us on a journey across the United States in Railroad Landscape. In the process, he chooses the road-less-traveled, revealing a hidden corner of American history. “Space changes around rail lines that remain generations after their construction,” he says. “The tracks flow into the distance or cut across a picture, leaving us in wonder; and yet their confident line anchors one to its path.
“Once bustling depots sit forlorn, objects of aesthetic pride are forgotten. Elsewhere, tracks flow through immutable mountain passes. From the urban to the rural, I set out to examine how the tracks exist as a narrative force within the frame while also looking to places describing our collective history.”
Stay tuned for stories on these three artists in the coming month. In the meantime, we’re accepting submissions for the March edition of the Feature Shoot Reader Spotlight. It costs just $20 to submit up to 5 images, and submissions are open through April 3rd, 2022.