Amy Kurutz Lenhardt
Hello! Welcome to Studio Amy Images and my fine art photography.
As a lifelong artist, my very first camera was gifted to me at age 13. At this age the death of my father eight years earlier started haunting me and I began to crave a connection to a man I barely remembered. Boxes and boxes of family photos beginning in the 1930’s triggered my curiosity of trying to get to know more about my dad. Every photo told a story. The feel and smell of the paper and film connected me to him. I studied faces, body language and locations in every photo. Missing pieces were coming together. A story was being told to me.
Dad was the family photographer who captured all our moments. When I found two of his old cameras in the attic, I stashed them away in my room before anyone could toss them. I knew his hands pushed the buttons to create those little squares of memories that kept him alive for me. I would sit in my room and look at every photo over and over and over during my teenage years. My obsession with photography began as a way to continue a story that had come to an end too soon.
I was a product of the Kodak Instamatic and Polaroid One Step era. On my 16th birthday I was gifted a manual SLR and the obsession was in full swing capturing everything I could find. That is when I started my weekend trips to anywhere just to shoot rolls and rolls of film. I learned to develop my own film in school, standing in the darkroom watching a photo appear on a piece of paper soaked in a tray of chemicals was sheer magic. Then came digital, I received my first compact digital camera after my second child was born and quickly after that I moved on to a DSLR. The immediate gratification of seeing a shot right after it is taken is certainly addicting. I can immediately delete the bad shots and keep the good ones. Editing my photos is a natural extension to my graphic design background. I started creating my own fine art photography in a style that meshes with my graphic design. I prefer editing some of my work in a nostalgic style using muted colors, but a lot of my work is also bolder and sharper via my graphic design chops. I also possess a large body of work in black & white as this is a true classic, romantic look that I have always been drawn to going back to the family snapshots of the 1930’s - 50’s. I started to work with film again on occasion as it feels like a lost art and shooting film brings me back to my roots where I need to know my camera and think twice before pressing the shutter.
I’m creating new work all the time, preferring the great outdoors as my main focus with capturing special moments a close second. I want to continue the story I found in boxes in an attic decades ago by adding my vision and experiences to keep the story alive. Thank you Dad for this gift!