Artist and photographer Sia Aryai creates one of a kind, stunning interpretations of his photographs of trees by printing them on hand painted heavyweight paper. Enjoy more of his beautiful images by visiting his website.
I was born in Tehran, Iran and displayed an interest in art from early childhood. Finding myself in a stringent cultural environment, I left Iran for England in the mid-seventies where I received my formal education and was free to pursue my artistic passions. I later moved to the United States where in the mid-eighties I immersed myself in the medium of photography.
I have found that photography is the perfect means and medium to capture the essence and the beauty of my subjects through my own unique vision, approach and style.
I am very excited about my series entitled “KI” (which means tree in Japanese). I have received three awards since beginning of this year with this process, which I began experimenting with in early 2012.
Printing process and subject matter are the two key points that identify KI.
Elegant, heavyweight stock is treated with multiple layers of varnish and tints to match shades of the chosen photograph. The photo is then transferred onto this processed background and enhanced as dictated by my eye and hand.
For the gold acrylic process, I start by painting heavyweight paper with layers of acrylic gold and varnishes. The parchment is now ready for the finishing layers.
Varied ink applications, brushings and varnishing create the final rich effect. Brushing out some of the ink from the print creates a unique effect on the metallic gold with the texture of the ink and the layers of gold acrylics.
I am looking for the finished image to have a central focal point, but softer edges that blur and almost even look washed out. The challenge is how much ink I can take off before it is washed out completely.
I repeat the process in several days. It works better when I start with dried ink because I can better estimate the ink movement on the paper. It takes me about eight days to process one piece, and I usually reject at least one fourth of everything I make.
By using hand painted paper as a medium for my photography, I can change the emotional feel of a print. Where ink is missing layers of gold are presented.
I have experimented with neon, oil and gouache paint, but decided on acrylic, mostly because the use of metallic acrylic ink presents a stronger visual. The final results are all uniquely different.
My subject matter is trees which I began photographing about five years ago when going for a morning walk at Griffith Park in Los Angeles. For the first time I realized how powerful and characteristic trees appear when photographed. I love the printing process and the challenge and the results which can often be unexpected.