Steve Deer is a regular on the shortlist of our photo competitions. Today we take a closer look into his stunning outdoor photography which has also been featured numerous times at the ‘Landscape Photographer of the Year’ exhibition.
theprintspace client Steve Deer is an art director for an advertising agency and has always had exposure to photography and photographers. He lives close to the coast and not too far from the Snowdonia mountains and loves the outdoors in all conditions. The camera just naturally followed, he tells us.
Steve shoots fine art landscapes, portraits, social documentary, sports action and street photography. “I am always looking for unusual compositions and graphic qualities,” he says. “A huge amount of post-production effort is put into my work, just as much into a sports action shot as a fine art piece, but it needs to look subtle, if the image looks over processed then I’ve failed.”
“I love black and white, particularly the mood that can be achieved,” says Steve. “I try to transfer that into my colour work, mood always wins over technical quality for me.”
For his work he uses a Canon 5d and various lenses. “My lovely old Hasselblad is just for looking at,” he jokes. The image ‘Spectators’ was taken with a Lensbaby, a lens attached to some flexible plastic tube, which you focus by pulling it towards the camera.
“Nothing in this shot is in focus but I like the painterly quality and the 1940/50’s look,” Steve says. “Even though it was taken a couple of years ago.”
All of Steve’s images are pre-processed in Adobe Camera Raw and then post-processed in Photoshop. “I often add a distressed layer to my fine art stuff,” he explains. “Sometimes digital images can look too sterile.”
The hobby photographer doesn’t usually exhibit his work. “I guess I’m a bit of a Vivian Maier,” he says. “I’ve a huge back catalogue of work just lying in storage doing nothing. I’m always working on projects too. But yet again, only friends and family get see a little of what I’m up to.”
Steve had several successes over the years in the prestigious ‘Landscape Photographer of the Year’ exhibition. “I’d love to get my work into the prestigious galleries, but then wouldn’t we all,” he says.
Steve’s favourite theprintspace paper is Hahnemuhle Photorag. “I’ve used it for years and feel no reason to change,” he explains. “The profile supplied by the theprintspace is spot on. A soft proof on my iMac screen looks exactly as the same as the print I get back from theprintspace, and I’m really fussy about colour matching.”
Steve recently spent a day on a beach shooting a kite buggy event which can be seen on his website. “It was surreal, something out of a Mad Max film,” he says. “I’m thinking the Kodak Metallic paper may add an extra gritty dimension to these images, so I may stretch out of my comfort zone here.”
Steve is also one of the winners of this years’ ‘Photo Democracy Award‘ for Fine Art Photography and will be exhibited at The Chris Beetles Gallery this August.
Take a look at more of his subtle outdoor photography on Steve Deer’s website. Find your favourite theprintspace paper with our C-type and Giclee paper guide.