Photographer Introduces 1 of 1: A Concept That Brings Back the One-of-a-Kind Appeal of Fine-Art Photography
In this digital age, photography seems to have become everyone’s domain. Anybody with a smart phone is considered a photographer, and even professional, copyrighted photos might be shared hundreds of times via Facebook, Instagram and the Internet.
Now Fargo photographer Dan Francis is introducing “1 of 1,” a photo series that he hopes will bring back the unique appeal and special cache of fine-art photography.
“When you have a painting, it’s an original painting and that’s it,” Francis says. “You could repaint it, but it will never be exactly the same.” Prints can be made, but they are never as good or as valuable as the real thing. Likewise, the name of Francis’ project, “1 of 1,” plays off the concept of limited-edition printmaking or photography, in which prints are marked “1/50,” or “1 of 100.”
Francis plans to bring the same concept to a select portion of his own work. He will choose from his collection of unprinted fine-art images, print a photo using Hahnemühle Fine Art paper to the most exacting standards, then frame, matte, sign and number it, “1 of 1.” The image will then be permanently deleted from his computer. Anyone who purchases the photo will receive a certificate of authenticity that guarantees it has never been replicated and is the only existing image of its kind. In doing so, Francis hopes to preserve the artistry of certain handpicked images.
Francis says he was motivated to develop the “1 of 1” concept in an endeavor to push himself to create the best work possible. “There will be a select few images from my past work, but this endeavor will continue on throughout my life,” he says. “The goal is to think more conceptual photographs, print them on the finest paper available and then archive them. I still hold onto a favorite film photograph of my childhood, and it’s been with me for almost 30 years. It’s the only copy I have of that image. When you care about something and it’s one of a kind, you take care of it as best as possible.”
For Francis, the “1 of 1” concept is a way to preserve the quality and uniqueness of his chosen work. “It’s a way to bring a uniqueness back into photography again,” he says. “It’s just a way to choose the best of the best vs. just having a computer full of images you don’t print. It’s taking all those 0s and 1s and turning them into a real image.”
Born and raised in Fargo, N.D., Francis is a Certified Master Professional Photographer and college photography instructor. Francis has been honored as a Professional Photographers of America Silver-Level Photographer of the Year. His work appeared as the cover image for the B&W International magazine for fine art. In January of 2013 he was awarded the Highest Portrait Print honor of PPA as a Grand Image Award Nominee. Francis is also a five-time Kodak Gallery Award Winner for his fine-art images.
Dan Francis Photography (www.danfrancisphotography.com) is located in downtown Fargo, 10 8th Street, Suite 200.
“The prints are posterity, not the negatives.” - Brett Weston
Contact: Dan Francis, 701.238.7185