With a covertness that few possess, Photojournalist Mark Wilson is able to capture moments as they are, undisturbed or distorted by interference –while seizing the emotion encompassing them. With such a natural ability to hide in plain site- Wilson is able to invite the viewer in- -allowing them to to live the moment with him. Depicted in his photographs are many fleeting moments—-documenting time–with many stories, and begging the audience to feel the energy! Welcome to the world of Photojournalist Mark Wilson.
Mark has been a professional photojournalist and amateur comedian for over 25 years, covering everything from hard news to high fashion with a keen eye towards generating creative and powerful imagery. Born and raised in the suburbs of Detroit, Mark has traveled the country many times over, residing in Oregon during the ‘80s where he studied at Portland State University and Alaska where the final month was spent working aboard oil rigs in the Bering Sea. He began his photographic career in 1987 at the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette statewide daily newspaper, highlighted by the two presidential runs of Bill Clinton and the ensuing media swarm that engulfed Little Rock and the state of Arkansas as well as a newspaper war that created the present day paper. His latest ongoing project is a series of children’s photographic books starring his 3-legged Siberian husky named Nanook. Nanook has been wagging his tail across America, posing for pictures along the way at famous and not so famous landmarks, baseball parks and other cool places. Mark is currently based somewhere in the Deep South.
1 . What attracted you to photography?
I realized at an early age that I had artistic ability and drew constantly. When I bought my first camera at age 13 (a Pentax K1000 purchased with my earnings from delivering the Detroit Free Press newspaper) it dawned on me that photography could be used as a tool to improve those drawing skills. Throughout the years the 2 disciplines have worked symbiotically, teaching me composition and arrangement which is essential for a great photo.
2. How would you describe your photography style?
My photographs, as many people have described to me, have a wow factor. They have been described as powerful, vibrant and direct. I have the ability to tell a complete story, one frame at a time.
3. What inspires you?
I’m inspired by everything that I see, things those around me can’t, or won’t see. I’ve always been inspired to capture the moment because it is short lived.
4. How do you think you have evolved in your art since starting?
My confidence and maturity regarding delicate photographic shooting situations (high profile personalities, drive by and school shootings, fatality car wrecks, soldier casualties returning home to grieving family members, etc.) have contributed to my growth through the years. I have developed an ability to become invisible. I am the stealth Ninja photographer.
5. What project/photograph/experience in your career stands out in your mind as a defining moment in your career? I really can’t single out one defining moment. There have been so, so many stepping stones along the way. Early on it was simply the self awareness that I wanted to make great images. Period. Certainly there have been pinnacles and stand out moments. The first time I made the front page of the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. My first magazine publication. The first time I was published in a book.
6. What do you think the job of a good photograph is? What should it do?
An image can be a powerful thing. A powerful photo captures ‘the moment’, tells the story without a need for verbal description. Direct and to the point.
7. Which photographers/artists do you admire the most?
I admire any journalist that is embedded in a war zone. And I’ve always loved the works of Salvador Dali, Andy Warhol and M.C. Escher.
8. What would you say to someone considering photography?
Learn basic composition. Take an art or design class. And shoot. A lot.
Any Parting Thoughts?
Since we now live in a digital age many younger and novice photographers have no comprehension of film, darkrooms, etc. A lot of the art of making photographs has been lost. With digital it has become an instant gratification situation. In the film days you really had to know your shit because there were no auto corrections, no image previews, no photoshop corrections, no do-overs. You had to be precise by getting it right the first time. Photographers had to really work an image to get it right. Okay, I’ve vented and I feel a little better. Peace to all.
Learn more about Photojournalist Mark Wilson at http://www.markwilsonphoto.com/
All photographs on this page are the property of Photojournalist Mark Wilson . You must
have his permission to use them in any manner. You may contact him through his website