“Modern images that capture contemporary man’s celebration of the eternal earth”, responds Matt Dodge, when asked to describe his work. “In order to thrive", he adds,"a huge slice of my soul demands wilderness adventure, while another part craves to create”. Combining the two, his work visually translates the intrinsic elation of outdoor engagement, when the synapses are firing and the soul rejoicing.
Creating the pieces is itself an adventure. He explains: “When I begin, I approach the canvas as I would terrain which I am raring to ride. As I propel through, I draw an innovative and inspired line, react with practiced skills and evolving maneuvers, execute with precision and style. The finished piece is my wake.”
His self-developed technique starts with photographs taken during his outdoor pursuits. He digitally edits the files which are then printed in black & white on canvas. Next, Dodge applies layers of color, using various media including inks, dyes, pastels, pencils, oils, acrylics and watercolors. Outlines, designs and textures are then meticulously carved into the core of the canvas using X-Acto knives and engraving tools. These steps are repeated as necessary until the realized image reveals itself. Sometimes, metal wire is stitched through the canvas as a final embellishment. The entire task is incredibly labor intensive and, as with any worthwhile excursion, time is measured in weeks. All resulting works, which he terms “sculpted photographs”, are one-of-a-kind treasures.
Born in Santa Monica, and after 26 years in Lake Tahoe, Matt Dodge currently resides in the Humboldt County enclave of Big Lagoon, California. A daily outdoorsman, he is a snowboard pioneer and former world champion who now savors fat-tire pedaling and prone paddling his neighboring terrain.
Matt Dodge received the degree Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Colorado, Boulder.