I’m not a photographer, the only camera I actually use is my cell phone, but I do have a photography site. Magna Garden presents my original scanography, created by scanning natural materials at high magnification and resolution. My digital images are edited in Photoshop and printed by normal photo-lab techniques, on matt or glossy paper, canvas or other materials. The only difference is the process of obtaining the image, using a high-resolution scanner. The results are magnified close-ups with a unique look, seemingly so close you could touch them.
I began producing them in 1996 and my archive now contains hundreds of scans of flowers, leaves, twigs, grasses, feathers and foods. I only need more time to sort and make them available. Magna Garden, as a project, came about in 2010, some fourteen years after I began to produce these flower scans. In its current form, it contains a tour presentation of my work with descriptions in Czech and English.
Like many experimenters, I began with a copy-machine – a high end color-copier. My first work, in 1996, was focused on fall-colored leaves and I had my first exhibition of 40 pieces during the spring of 1997 at Radost FX’s gallery space in Prague. Even before that, I’d attempted to laminate leaves, but the heat of the process always destroyed the bright colors and (of course) flattened the image. Copy-machines have many limitations, mainly that there was no digital record of the image to allow later editing and printing.
My “second generation” flower images came from a scanner and it felt like going from a magnifying glass to a microscope. While copy-machines magnified by only 200% at that time, suddenly I was able to work at 400% and later, even up to 6400% scan magnifications. My current machine surpassed my needs and I settled on a range of magnification between 1000-2000%, depending on the subject. Then I play with the images afterwards, using Photoshop to airbrush away dust, pollen or other impurities. It’s my aim to be as true-to-nature as possible, so I do minimal color management or artistic distortion. I love capturing nature and showing it to others.
Inspiration for Other Artists
I was pleased to realize that my art communicates with people on its own. In 2010, my photographs were integrated into a theatre performance by the HoME theatre group and poet Jan Maruna wrote a collection of poems based on my scans. It was fascinating work on both of these projects and I’m certainly interested in more artistic collaborations.
Check it out www.magnagarden.com