The stunning photographs of flowers by Lucy Beck will be featured at the Moraga Art Gallery's upcoming show "Botanica" beginning Jan. 11.
Beck, a Lafayette resident, has been photographing flowers for 10 years. She began taking classes in digital photography through the Lafayette Community Center and has advanced her skills to a master level, winning second place at a recent statewide competition at the Triton Museum in Santa Clara and showing her work at galleries throughout the state.
The floral images radiate with life, each expressing something unique. Beck studies the shape and movement of each specimen and lets that inform her composition and process. "Each flower has a personality and says something to me. I try to capture that and honestly express what I'm felling in each image," says Beck. Her background in behavioral genetics influences her work. Beck understands that as the world changes, slight changes to the genetics could alter the flowers we see today. She wants to capture the beauty and inspire others to preserve the beauty as well.
Some of Beck's images are straightforward photographs. Others involve a more complex process and can take days to complete. She places the flowers on a light box and takes multiple photos at different exposures. She then uses the Photoshop program to layer these images to capture the essence of what she wants to communicate. "I photograph flowers because I'm drawn to the endless complexity and beauty of them," she adds. The use of the light box adds an ethereal feeling to the images and brings the viewer in close to see exquisite details made by nature. It took Beck over a year to master the use of the light box, and she now teaches workshops on the process.
Also featured in the show is the pottery of Chanda Beck (no relation) whose whimsical designs are reminiscent of plants and patterns found in nature. The handmade ceramic items for the home feature fun designs with bold color and delicate black lines.
Both artists will attend an opening reception from 5 to 7 p.m. on Jan. 14 at the gallery at 522 Center St., Moraga. There will be wine, snacks and live music, and the artists' works will be available for purchase. The show runs through March 18 and the gallery is open Wednesday through Sunday, noon to 5 p.m. For more information contact 925-376-5407 or www.moragaartgallery.com.
Photo Chanda Beck
Lucy Beck at the Moraga Gallery. Photo Kara Navalio