Dan Elster



BobcatDan Elster’s new show, Wild Eyes, opens on Friday, January 4th at The Photographers’ Gallery At The Ashland Art Center during the First Friday Art Walk.

At first, the camera was just a reason to get close to some of the wildlife in suburban Chicago. Taking photos to preserve the memories just seemed to make sense. Starting out, I just took snapshots. I didn’t understand shutter speeds, apertures, lenses, etc. and really didn’t care.

But something about meeting animals in their habitat and on their terms moved me. Wild animals have a spirit and oftentimes, I could feel it.  And it changed me.

Over time, my approach and goals for image-making have changed too. I’m no longer satisfied simply documenting the natural world, I strive to create art. Light, composition, behavior and razor-sharp focus are almost as important to me as capturing the very spirit of the animal itself.

It’s the drama in nature that inspires me. In the wild, every day is a struggle, just to survive. This is the story I aim to tell.  Wink