Submissions to Chiaroscuro close in

Selections Expected by March 30th, 2017 23:59 EST

Juror: David H. Wells

Photo © David H.Wells

Chiaroscuro [kee-ahr-uh-skyoo-roh] is defined as "the distribution of light and shadow in an image" or " the use of deep variations and subtle gradations of light and shade, especially to en-hance the delineation of character and for general dramatic purposes". To the photo-grapher the play of light and shadow is the very essence of the medium.

Exhibit Calendar (Subject to Change)
Submissions Close:22 March 17 23:59 EST
Selections Announced:by 30 March 17
On-Line Check-in Due:7 April 17
Work Receipt Deadline:24 April 17
Exhibit Opens:27 April 17
Artists' Reception:13 May 17 16:00
Exhibit Closes:21 May 17
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Selection Process
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The Darkroom Gallery Difference

The many nuances and subtleties in the contrast of shadow and light are crucial in establishing a photographic narrative. Light can glow, dance, blaze, bounce and flash. It can be dim or radiant, brilliant or gloomy. Shadow can cut through an image like a blade or reveal an object in the finest gradients.

For this exhibition, we're looking for photographs that graphically illustrate the interplay of shadow and light, darkness and illumination. How have you utilized the relationship between light and shadow to create drama, emotion and nuance in your photos? Chiaroscuro is your opportunity to show off your photographic vision of darkness and light.

Juror’s Statement:

Jurying the Chiaroscuro work was a fascinating experience. A couple things struck me immediately. While color photography seems to be everywhere these days, the vast majority of the work that was submitted was in black and white (or at least that is what struck me.) With the theme being Chiaroscuro, as in "the distribution of light and shadow in an image,” that tendency towards black and white was not a complete surprise.

Having said that, the word Chiaroscuro usually references classical paintings, which were usually done in color. I did notice that the best images in this set (both color as well as black and white) often referenced classical paintings in terms of having lots of chunks of black, great beams of light and wonderful distributions of tones. The best color images generally had fairly subdued colors which is something you often see in classical paintings with great Chiaroscuro. Since my own work features a fair amount of Chiaroscuro and is mostly in color these days, I am not completely surprised that the imagery I was drawn to had those traits.

While the imagery I was drawn to had plenty of Chiaroscuro, the best images had something more. I passed over plenty of images that had great play of light and shadow, but the winning images were the ones that used dramatic light and shadow in support of some larger message. The images I selected for the show and especially the "Juror's Choice" and the three "Honorable Mentions” exemplify that. Each image has a great story within it, a story that is made much stronger by the use of Chiaroscuro. When I am out photographing that is what I too am looking for! I congratulate the winners whose work had that ideal balance of form and content, as in having beautiful Chiaroscuro and a great story within each image.

David H. Wells
Narrative Visuals

it's a rooftop

ali almumen
Las Visit

Amanda Marie Harner
Damascus, Maryland USA
Nightscapes Vienna 01

Andreas Theologitis
Athens, Greece


Anita Sagastegui
Walnut Creek, Ca USA
Light Through Venetian Blinds

Bruce Berkow
New York, NY USA

Cynthia Morgan Batmanis
Houston, Texas USA

Silvester Day

time passenger

Which Way?

Dan Bronish
North Miami, Fl USA

seen from above number 5

dante diaz
los angeles, california USA
Morning Light - Kelsey

Dave Levingston
Springfield, Ohio USA

David Aimone
Saratoga Springs, NY USA

Curve and Shadow

Diane Kaye
Aptos, CA USA

Donna Hixson
Boca Raton, FL United States

Edward L. Rubin
Los Angeles, CA USA


Gabrielle Robinson
New York, New York USA

Gary Mitchell
Dayton, Ohio USA
Woman with a Book

Geoffrey Agrons
Philadelphia, PA USA


Georg Worecki
Erpeldange (Wiltz), Luxembourg
The Train is on its Way

George Hamlin
Fairfax, Virginia USA
Morning Glory

James Kezman
Stuttgart, Germany

Sunset at ESP

Jim Turner
Silver Spring, Maryland United States

Joan M. Campbell
Toronto, ON Canada
Afternoon Tea

John Eaton
Aptos, CA USA

Cornish Fair Tractor

John Flynn
White River Junction, VT USA
Geometry of Shade

Jolanta Mazur
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Juergen Voelkl
St. Poelten, Austria Austria

Grid Life

Juergen Voelkl
St. Poelten, Austria Austria
Tim Mei Avenue

Kelly McCann
Wan Chai, Hong Kong Hong Kong SAR
Buying Bangles

Ken Dreyfack
Saugerties, NY USA

Agra Train Station, Dawn

Kip Harris
Indian Harbour, Nova Scotia Canada
The Machine of Secrets - Verse 4

Lawrence Russ
Southport, CT USA
After Dinner

Liza Hennessey Botkin
Studio City, CA USA

Moonlit Moon Jar

Louise Parms
Bronx, New York USA
Behind the Green Door

Mark Allen Dierker
Dubuque, Iowa USA

Mary Ciullo
Glen Head, NY USA

Untitled 1

Merethe Wessel-Berg
Oslo, Norway
Please Give me a Sign

Michael Jon Coleman
S. Burlington, VT USA

Nei Valente
New York, NY United States

Solo In Blue

Nick Winkworth
Menlo Park, CA USA

Norma McGehee Woodward
Fredericksburg, VA USA
THe Farrier

Paul Ivanushka
Inglewood, CA USA

Fifth Avenue

Paul Kessel
New York, NY USA
Parallel Lines

Peggy Reynolds
Essex Jct., VT USA

Pere Ibañez
Barcelona, SPAIN

Rec Room

Pete McCutchen
Alexandria, VA USA
Old Fashioned Nighclothes

Rebecca Rothey
Baltimore, MD USA

Rick Branscomb
Londonderry, New Hampshire United States

Neptune's Shadow

S.A. Hopkins
Glen Allen, Virginia USA
by the sea

Spitznagel Carmen
Sandberg-Waldberg, Germany
Tuscan Woman

Stephan Brigidi
Bristol, Rhode island USA


Stephen Milne
Alliston, Ontario Canada
Leather and Steel

Steve Knight
Baytown, TX USA
Claryville #1

Thom O'Connor
New York, NY USA

Juror: David H. Wells

David H. Wells is a visual storyteller whose photography and film making straddle the line between fine art and the documentary. His hybrid work is created on commercial assignment and through grant-funded projects Wells uses still, time-lapse, and moving images as well as audio to create award-winning narratives.He is affiliated with Aurora Photos, with past assignments for Life Magazine, National Geographic Magazine, the New York Times Magazine, and the Philadelphia Inquirer Magazine, to name a few. His work has been featured in solo exhibits at Brown University, U.C. Berkeley, and Harvard University. Wells has taught classes at the University of Pennsylvania and at the Maine Media Workshops. He is on the faculty of the International Center for Photography in NYC, He was featured in Photo District News as a "Best Workshop Instructor".

  • All selected entries are exhibited in our gallery and included in a full color exhibit catalog;
  • Juror's Choice receives a 30x48" vinyl exhibit banner featuring their image, free entry into a future exhibition, a free exhibition catalog;
  • Honorable Mentions receive free exhibition catalogs and free entry in a future exhibition. 
  • People's Choice gains free entry into a future exhibit.
  • We offer free matting and framing of accepted entries for the duration of each of our exhibition, subject to standard sizes. Photographers set their own prices if they wish to sell their work and retain all rights to their photographs.


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