Locked Out of Heaven by: Steven Walsh – Creative Portraiture Artist
Steven Walsh recently finished a Creative Portraiture series he calls “Locked out of Heaven”. A shoot portraying Fallen Angels which he chose to represent through the use of clownish make-up. Walsh’s explains that different shapes and designs in their makeup represent different angels. All will have a macabre sort of feeling as if they were once beautiful and innocent but have been tainted, corrupted by evil. Read the rest of this article for more information on Steven Walsh, and check out this amazing series!
Tell us a little bit about you? Where do you consider home?
This may sound corny, but I have always believed that home is where the heart is. I’m from Rochester, NY. Did my first undergrad at Stony Brook University on Long Island where I got my BA in Anthropology. Drove across the country, lived in Newport Beach, California and finally settled here in Jersey City, NJ to attend FIT for 2 years. I am now planning on moving to Chicago to attend Grad School at SAIC (fingers crossed I get in). Growing up, my family and I moved around a ton for various reasons, and I think that has had a great effect on me because I never feel content living in one place too long. I’m always curious what it’s like to live somewhere else, see other places, and experience life elsewhere. To bring it all back around, I think my home will always be Rochester, but for now I’m happy traveling the country and experiencing it’s wonders as much as I can afford.
Have you attended school/taken any courses for Photography?
I graduated from Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) with my AAS, and hopefully my MFA from School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
What or who got you started in photography?
I always attribute this to my mother. I found out that I was rejected from graduate school for Medieval Archaeology, which I still find fascinating, and the whole family took a trip to Disney World. My mother says to me “You have a great eye for taking pictures, maybe you should be a photographer?” They bought me a DSLR for graduation a few months later, and the rest is history.
List 3 photographers you admire – past and/or present.
1) Ansel Adams – Cliche, but most of my work is Black and White, and I love the tonality in his images. 2) David LaChapelle – I love his hyper-realistic work, particularly the series “Earth Laughs through Flowers”. 3) Atta Kim – I love his long exposure work, having done a project similar to that I can relate to his concept.
List 3 things you wish you had done sooner in your career.
1) Learned Photoshop. 2) Learned how to use a camera earlier in life, not just my career. 3) Push myself harder, sooner.
If you could be invisible for one day with your camera, where would you go?
I would go into the White House, not to photograph the nation’s secrets, but to photograph the life of the president and how he interacts with his family while nobody else is around.
What is your current gear setup?
I currently have a Canon Rebel XS with the kit lens, a 55-250mm lens, and a cheap Bowers brand flash. Nothing fancy, but it gets the job done.
What is your favorite lens and why?
I don’t necessarily have a favorite lens, but I do love the effects a macro lens gives with having the ability to get up close and have such shallow depth of field.
What lighting equipment do you take on a regular shoot if any?
I don’t usually have shoots that require lighting equipment, but if I did I would use a Profoto kit with two heads, probably and umbrella or soft box and definitely a grid or two.
How important is Photoshop in your final images?
It is essential. I do do a lot of editing the skin and such, but when I have a vision and it’s best created with Photoshop. Rather than try to kill myself and have it come out perfect in camera. Also, most of my work is conceptual and demands the use of Photoshop.
Are you a Mac or PC lover?
I love Mac, but I cannot afford one so I have a PC.
If you weren’t a professional photographer, what would you like to be doing?
I would most likely be studying cathedrals in the UK.
Which 5 words would your friends use to describe you?
Compassionate. Creative. Attractive. Intelligent. Happy.
What is the inspiration behind your art?
For this particular series, I was inspired by the poster for “American Horror Story: Asylum” and the dripping black out eye effect. I did one, and it snowballed and changed into something more religious after thinking over the images I had, and listening to my favorite song at the time “Locked out of Heaven” by Bruno Mars. Most of my other work is simply inspired by the lines and shape of the human body, hands, face, etc.
What would you do if you won the lottery?
Pay my student loans, pay my brother’s loans, set up a college fund for my younger sister, then go on vacation with someone special and set up shop in London.
And the last question, if you had one wish…
I want to say I’d wish for more wishes, but that’s cheating. I would wish to never lose my passion for photography. It may waver, but I hope that it never fades away completely.