Ellen Balka is a photographer and print maker living and working in Vancouver and Whistler, British Columbia, in western Canada. Artist's Statement In reflecting on the unique properties of photography Freeman Patterson points out that "when you start to make a photograph, you have an already-existing object in front of your lens." Painters start with an empty canvas they create. In contrast, photographers can choose their subject matter and vary their treatment of it, but nonetheless always confront some aspect of the physical world whose existence and character is independent of the photographer and their interpretation of it.
For Ellena making photographs demands an immediacy in engaging in the world, and this engagement, in turn, yields an intensity of experience and emotion. In her photographic work, she seeks to give permanence to often fleeting motion while revealing emotion. Her works, which is at times impressionistic and at times abstract, plays on themes of perceptual ambiguity while exploring colour.
Her aim is to convey something of the wonder, magic and intensity of the everyday world she sees and experiences to those who view her work. Using a variety of techniques such as making photographs at slow shutter speeds, panning the camera (both on and off of a tripod), increasing or decreasing the range of a zoom lens with an open shutter, making in camera multiple exposures or deliberately altering the focal point of a lens in relation to her subject, Ellen intentionally makes abstract photographs, often revealing a sense of movement. She enjoys exploring the limits of the still camera, and taking advantage of the unique properties of still cameras to create perceptual ambiguity.
For more information please visit Ellen's Saatchi Art page.