we first saw Dale Hoopingarner's images come through our studio,
we were struck by their exquisite detail, beauty, and decidedly
different look. Hoopingarner is not a photographer in the traditional
sense, using a camera to capture his images. Instead, he uses
an Epson 4490 digital scanner to "scan" his subject
matter: flowers; leaves; and details of nature. The end result
he calls a "Scanograph."
style is one that is more of a "growing" composition:
The plants arranged as they might have occurred in the garden
or field, but usually more minimalistic than a full flower
arrangement, letting the flowers speak for themselves," Hoopingarner
said. "Photographers usually go out to find their subjects.
I bring my subjects to me, so I have to be able to visualize
the possibilities as they are in the field: a flower; some
leaves; an interesting texture of bark."
Explains the Scanography Process:
"The scanography technique results in unique images.
The contrast of brilliantly crisp foreground colors and edges
is paired with a narrow depth of field (usually no more than
1/2 inch), yielding "scanographs" with wonderfully
rich shading and a unique perspective. Since the image is
scanned line-by-line, the lighting and shadows are different
than any conventional lens. The very high resolution possible
(I usually scan at a minimum of 1200 dpi) allows the images
to be enlarged to 35x45 --and often more -- bringing out
details in a flower or leaf that can't be achieved for an
entire arrangement with a conventional macro lens.
the image is captured it is then digitally edited to do two
Remove any pollen, hairs or dust that no amount of plate
cleaning can totally eliminate.
Make the background 100% black.
of the high-resolution of the images, this process usually
takes 10-15 hours per image, and often more.
is all just the mechanics of the process. The artistry is seeing
the possibilities of flower and leaf arrangements that will
flow together well in a scanned image -- balanced, pleasing.
Since the image is created by layering the flowers and leaves
on the scanner surface, the results aren't known until a preview
scan is made -- and often exchanged multiple times for another
The Final Step: Making a Print
Hoopingarner uploads his finished images to West Coast Imaging's Print
Lab, where we print them on our Epson 9800 with K3 Photo
of the scanography technique is to digitally edit the background
to be 100% black," Hoopingarner said. "The photo-black
inks finish the process, making the flowers pop out of the
print on that rich inky blackness."
a lot to worry about as an artist, both on the creative side
(What's next? Does this piece "work"?) and on the
business side (What price? Which gallery? What about the internet?)," said
Hoopingarner. "With WCI, I've never had to worry about
printing my images...the resulting prints just call out quality.
One less worry is quite comforting in this day-and-age."
images will be included in the May 2007 Franklin Art Association's
group show at the Norfolk, Massachusetts, library. View
more of Hoopingarner's images in his WCI Featured Artist
Other Featured Artists