About Kirk Carter

Kirk Carter with Best in Show photo at the O. Winston Link Museum (photo by Art Sellers)

Best in Show, 2012 (Photo by Art Sellers)

Whether photographs, film or video, I have been making images since 1975. I learned black and white darkroom skills at the University of Maine. My student films at New York University incorporated composited photographic prints for special effects.

During the 1980s I produced television shows for local cable stations, resulting in regional and national awards. As an engineer in the 1990s, I used digital photographs for training and project communication.

I work in idea-driven photographic series, with the goal of producing books that function as art objects.

My photographs imply and portray human character by showing people’s possessions and castoffs, their public representations in the form of signs, their arranged or haphazard spaces, and the stories told by the surface marks they leave behind.

In some sense these are environmental portraits with the person framed out, invisible except by close examination of what’s left. The actions recorded in the things and places people have made, damaged, repaired, preserved or restored tell more than a smile or a pose, and hide less.

I photograph the telling details of human effort. The narrative clues contained in these details not only hint at hopes and frustrations, but also demonstrate in a broader sense the inevitability of leaving more of yourself on view than you had intended.

:: Exhibitions

"While I was looking for inspiration I came across Kirk's photos. His photography captures the details and moments in time that most people would overlook or take for granted. His scenic photos are beautiful and capture those inspirational views that make you want to be there."

--Anita C. Schauer, AIA

June 19 - August 19, 2015, Featured Artist at the Green Heron in Radford, VA, with prints from Underfoot Abstracts.

February 7 - March 14, 2015, Underfoot Abstracts shown at the Salem Museum, Salem, VA.

April 2014 - present, a selection of prints shown at The Green Heron in Radford, VA.

April 6-12, Artist in Residence at the Montgomery Floyd Regional Library, Christiansburg, VA.

October - February, 2013 - A selection of prints shown at the Green Heron Art Center in Radford, VA

November, 2013 - Cadillac shown in the online gallery portion of the Grayscale show at Kiernan Gallery in Lexington, VA

October 19, 2013 - Prints and books shown at Burnt Creative Market in Blacksburg, VA

July 26, 2013 - Prints and books shown at Wine & Artisans, an indoor art show in Christiansburg, VA

July 20, 2013 - Prints and books shown at Art at the Market, an outdoor art show in Blacksburg, VA

January 18 - March 4, 2013 - Four prints selected for the Roanoke Urbex group exhibition, O. Winston Link Museum, Roanoke, Virginia.

February, 2013 - Five prints purchased for displayed in the visitor reception area at Volvo Trucks, Dublin, Virginia.

October 4 - November 1, 2012 - Three prints selected for the group show In the Style of Link: Juried Exhibition at the O. Winston Link Museum, Roanoke, Virginia.

May 17 - July 15, 2012 - Signs of Dysfunction and Curious Surfaces at the Cultural Arts Center at Glen Allen (CACGA) as part of the HeARTbeat of Virginia show. Glen Allen, Virginia.

May 5, 2012 - Curious Surfaces shown as part of the Independent Photobook Library's crowdsourced exhibition at the Philadelphia Photo Arts Center Annual Book Fair.

May 4 - August 14, 2012 - Selection of prints at Virginia Tech's Holtzman Alumni Center Gallery, Blacksburg, Virginia.

April 13, 2012 - Curious Surfaces and Signs of Dysfunction for sale in the O. Winston Link Museum Gift Shop.

December 17, 2011 - Book signing for Signs of Dysfunction and Curious Surfaces at Heartwood, Southwest Virginia's Artisan Gateway, Abingdon, Virginia.

October 6 - December 6, 2011: Five prints shown at the Jacksonville Center for the Arts, as part of the Blacksburg Photo Club: Water show. Floyd, Virginia.

August 4 - October 4, 2011: Prints from Sunflower Summer shown at the Jacksonville Center for the Arts, as part of the All Natural show by Exposure Roanoke. Floyd, Virginia.

July 5 - 31, 2011: Prints from Sunflower Summer shown at Roanoke Natural Foods Co-op, as part of the All Natural show by Exposure Roanoke. Roanoke, Virginia.

June 15, 2011 - present: Prints and books shown at Heartwood, Southwest Virginia's Artisan Gateway, Abingdon, Virginia.

November 12, 2010 - January 2014: Prints and books shown at the Black Rooster Gallery in Marion, Virginia.

December 4, 2010: Prints and books shown at the "Christmas at the Draper Mercantile" event in Draper, Virginia.

October 31 - November 30, 2010: Two prints from the 2010 Blacksburg Photo Walk exhibited at the Community Arts Information Office in Blacksburg.

October 8, 2010 - January 13, 2011: White Umbrella and Steam Power selected for the documentRoanoke! juried photo contest and exhibition at the O. Winston Link Museum in Roanoke, Virginia. 26 photos by local photographers documenting their personal experience of the Roanoke Valley.

July 24, 2010: 10 framed prints displayed at a special invitation event with Senator Mark Warner, at Draper Mercantile in Draper, Virginia.

July 17, 2010: Framed and matted prints, and books shown at the annual Art at the Market street fair in Blacksburg, Virginia.

May 30 - June 23, 2010: 4 mounted prints shown at Renaissance Center Gallery, Kingsport, Tennessee in the 2010 Appalachian Photography Salon.

May 14 - July 8, 2010: Books and 10 framed prints shown at Black Rooster Gallery's May/June 2010 show in Marion, Virginia.

May 5 - June 26, 2010: 4 framed prints shown with work from 3 other local artists at Main Lee Art's "May Exhibition" in Blacksburg, Virginia.

April 2 - May 2, 2010: 2 framed prints exhibited with work from other local photographers as part of the New River Writer's Project at the Community Arts Information Office in Blacksburg, Virginia.

February 28 - April 14, 2010: 18 large framed prints exhibited as part of a one-artist show called Signs, Surfaces and Spaces at the Unitarian Universalist Church in Blacksburg, Virginia.

"VERY interesting collection of photos you have! I really enjoyed looking at them, you have a unique way of viewing and photographing subjects that others just might pass by...including me! Excellent!"

-- Debbi Lucas, Blacksburg, VA

January 15, 2010: Accepted by the Round the Mountain jury for inclusion in their collection at Heartwood: Southwest Virginia's Artisan Gateway in Abingdon, Virginia, scheduled to open in 2011.

January 11 -May 15, 2010: 15 large framed prints, matted prints and copies of my book Signs of Dysfunction exhibited as part of a local photographers show at West Main Coffee Depot in Christiansburg, Virginia.

December 4, 2009 – January 3, 2010: Showed 12 prints from Signs of Dysfunction at Mish Mish Gallery in Blacksburg, Virginia. Press coverage included a cover story in the Roanoke Times' NRV Current magazine by Amy Matzke-Fawcett.

June-December 2009: Framed and matted prints featured at Everything Art Gallery, Fincastle, Virginia.

March 26, 2009: Showed 15 framed prints at the juried Bread & Butter Art Show & Sale, a project of the Arts Council of the Blue Ridge, at Center in the Square, Roanoke, Virginia.

February 14-28, 2009: Showed 3 prints at the juried EastMont Art Association’s Art with a Heart show, in Shawsville, Virginia.

 

:: Publications

"Kirk has the wonderful ability to take seemingly unphotographable subjects and make them spring to life in the most unexpected and delightful ways."

--Rob, Troy, NY

Underfoot Abstracts, a book of 33 color photographs of pavement markings, 2014.

Cadillac appears in the Kiernan Gallery's catalog for a show called Grayscale, November 2013.

Curious Surfaces, The stories told in the marks we leave behind, a limited-edition softcover offered with a digital archival print, signed and numbered. Published October, 2010.

Rusty Wreck printed in Best of Photography 2010, Photographer's Forum Magazine's collection of finalists in the 30th Annual Spring Photography Contest. December 2010.

Signs of Dysfunction, a book of 74 color photographs of blank, broken, redacted or otherwise remarkably useless signs, 2009. Accepted into the Indie Photobook Library, September 2010.

River Bend printed in the Spring 2009 edition of the Society of Environmental Journalists Newsletter.

Blue Moon included in the orange section of Roy G. Biv by Justus Hayes, 2008.

 

:: Awards

Post Office Boxes 2 awarded Best in Show, First Place in the O. Winston Link Museum's juried exhibition In the Style of Link, October 2012.

Rusty Wreck chosen as a finalist in the 30th Annual Spring Photography Contest, Photographer's Forum Magazine, July 2010.

First Prize, 2D category, Art at the Market, Blacksburg, Virginia, 2010.

Rocky Knob Outcropping received Honorable Mention in the Mountains category of the 2009 Scenic Virginia Photo Contest.

Family Beach Walk on Assateague was the Grand Prize Winner, by unanimous decision, in the 2008 Scenic Virginia Photo Contest. River Bend and Rocky Knob Meadow received Honorable Mentions in the same contest.

 

:: Teaching

April 19, 2015: "Photographic Composition", Moss Arts Center at Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA.

April 12, 2014: "Near Abstract Workshop", Montgomery-Floyd Regional Library, Christiansburg, VA.

January 11, 25 and February 8, 2014: "Power Processing Workshop", with Curt Warwick, in Riner, VA.

May 29, 2013: "Chroma Key (Green Screen) Photography" for Exposure Roanoke in Salem, VA.

May 10 & 11, 2013: "Digital Exposure" and "All About Lenses (and a little more)" for the Virginia Tech Alumni Association's Focus on Photography workshop in Blacksburg, VA.

March 13, 2013: "Color Management Made Easy" for NRV Exposure in Blacksburg, VA.

February 20, 2013: "Basic Processing and Workflow" for NRV Exposure in Blacksburg, VA.

February 6, 2013: "Photographic Composition: Directing the Eye and Achieving Visual Balance" for NRV Exposure in Blacksburg, VA.

December 18, 2012: "Seeing Photographically" for NRV Exposure and the Blacksburg Photo Club in Blacksburg, VA.

November 27, 2012: "Digital Exposure" for NRV Exposure and the Blacksburg Photo Club in Blacksburg, VA.

October 30, 2012: "Sharpness & Bokeh" for NRV Exposure and the Blacksburg Photo Club in Blacksburg, VA.

October 16, 2012: "Seeing Photographically" for the Rockbridge Camera Club in Lexington, VA.

September 25, 2012: "All About Lenses" for NRV Exposure and the Blacksburg Photo Club in Blacksburg, VA.

June 6, 13 and 20, 2012: "The Formal Tools of Photography" classes at Y Open U in Blacksburg, VA.

May 4-5, 2012: "Focus on Photography: Seeing Photographically" workshop at Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA.

April 16 - May 21, 2012: "Learn to Photograph Intuitively" course at Y Open U in Blacksburg, VA.

March 17, 2012: "Color Management Made Easy" class for the Charlottesville Photography Initiative in Charlottesville, VA.

December 19, 2011: "Color Management Made Easy" class for Exposure Roanoke in Salem, VA.

November 17, 2011: "How to Shoot RAW and Improve Your Photography" class for Exposure Roanoke in Salem, VA.

June 27, 2011: "How to Shoot RAW and Improve Your Photography" class at YMCA Open University, Blacksburg, VA.

June 13, 2011: "Color Management Made Easy" class at YMCA Open University, Blacksburg, VA.

April 4, 2011: "Understanding Color Spaces & Color Profiles" training for the Exposure Roanoke photography club.

January and February, 2011: "Color Spaces & Color Profiles" training at the Blacksburg Photography Club and Roanoke Camera Club.

 

:: Organizations

Member, Blacksburg Regional Arts Association, 2015 - present.

Founder the NRV Exposure photography club, 2012, with Dennis Neale.

President of the Blacksburg Photo Club, 2012.

Member, 'Round the Mountain, 2010 - 2014.

 

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