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Platinum prince by Dawn Sumner, from Ag31

For almost 10 years Peter Dazeley has used the platinum process to bring a new dimension to his personal work

Best known for his work as a commercial photographer, Peter Dazeley has always found time to produce personal projects that give him the opportunity to experiment with new techniques and styles. For the past seven years he has been working on a series of fine art photographs of two distinctive themes: the female nude and flowers. Later this year he will be baring his soul in his first solo exhibition, which he sees as an opportunity for his work to be taken more seriously in the fine art arena. He is, however, realistic about the critical response he may receive: ‘The problem with wanting to be recognised as a fine art photographer is that I don’t think you can have a commercial life, because the establishment won’t let you’.

The notion of creating a photograph as art has fuelled endless debates with theorists defining ways that photography can be justified as art. Holding an exhibition increases the kudos of the photographer, and the value of a print is also seen as intrinsic to the fine art aesthetic. Platinum printing is an expensive process, the result of which is a highly desirable product. Dazeley has chosen platinum to enhance the fine art status of his personal work and he sees the use of this process as an extension of his own creativity. ‘All my platinum work is printed by 31 Studio and I see it as a way of using someone else’s skill to embellish my work and move it on. Platinum printing is an incredibly tedious process and I have no desire to do it myself. I can buy a printer’s skill and ability and he or she will often suggest something that I might not have thought about,’ he explains. The archival benefits of the platinum process make it the only choice for Dazeley when it comes to selling his work. ‘I am surrounded by people selling inkjet prints and I am not sure what the resale value really is because they do fade over time. I certainly know which one I would prefer and platinum is what people should be buying rather than something that will fade in a few years time.’ Next Page >>

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A selection from the featured images. Click on the detail to view full frame. All images Peter Dazeley

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