Putting the funk back into photography

The exhibit “Waters,” a collection of photos by Scott Funk of Richmond, have saturated the decadent walls of the Daily Planet during the month of April.As a part-time photographer and a mortgage advisor, Funk is rediscovering his passion for photography after 30 years.Funk’s photos depict water in its various physical and emotional forms, adding a light and smooth style to the restaurant’s flavor.”Waters” consists of more than 20 photographs depicting both local and international scenes of water. “Water is everywhere,” Funk said.  “Our relationship with water is intimate. It is a personal relationship.”Funk got his start back in the ‘60s with a good friend and photographer, Mike Doward. Doward was doing “black and white chronicles of the hippies,” Funk said, in reference to his days spent on the West coast. Photographing the great American desert was also a specialty of Funk’s many years ago. “I wandered around the ghost towns photographing old buildings,” Funk said.Funk’s style has drastically changed from working with arid areas of the country, to photographing places where water is in abundance, he said.It wasn’t until eight years ago that Funk began retraining his artistic eye to create pieces of work that he hopes to sell, he said.After many years of work, Funk said that he spent some time analyzing a number of his pieces.He came to the realization that his artistic flow was taking him down rivers, through feet of snow, and into the ocean, he said. It wasn’t until looking over his photo entitled “The Drought of ’07,” in which no water is depicted, that Funk realized the connecting theme of water in all of his other work. “It was at that time that I started consciously using water,” Funk said.Funk’s photos in the Daily Planet are mostly from local scenes in Vermont, although a number are from New Orleans, the Florida Everglades and the Caribbean Sea, he said.A favorite of Funk’s is entitled Rain Blow, a tranquil scene of a rainbow above a whale surfacing for air. His wife came up with the title, Funk said.Although Funk chooses photography as his artistic medium, the prints are on canvas, creating an interesting texture. “The canvas is different,” senior Laurel Fensterstock said.  “It doesn’t look like a photo. It looks like a painting.”The Daily Planet, a “hush eatery, funky bar and chic solarium,” according to their website, provides an intimate atmosphere for the water-themed exhibit.”The art here is normally not still photos,” Daily Planet employee Sasha Dicuia said.  “A lot are paintings or other mixed mediums. If they are photos, they are not mounted on canvas like these. I personally like them.””I was able to relate to a lot of his work because they were very classic Vermont scenes,” senior David Purcell said.Yet, a few college students at the Daily Planet believed that the $500 price tag was a bit too expensive for a photograph.Funk seems to capture the essence of water in a transient way. “This isn’t our world, we’re going to leave it and a measure of who we are is what we leave in tact behind us,” he said.The exhibit will be on display at the Daily Planet until the end of April.