Santa Monica art photographer Cheryl Medow creates images that entice the viewer to enter her world, both real and imagined.
Cheryl Medow’s background in the arts is diverse, but interconnected. Medow studied ceramics at the famed Chouinard Institute and received a BA in Art from UCLA, concentrating on life drawing with charcoal and pastels. Continuing her art education, she studied printmaking at Hand Graphics in Santa Fe, New Mexico.
With a wealth of materials and techniques, Medow layers her photographs and weaves them together to create visual narratives.
Since first exhibiting her work in 2006, Medow has received many accolades and her work is held in many private collections. Her work was first published in Nash Editions: Photography and the Art of Digital Printing (New Riders, 2007) as well as 100 Artists of the West Coast II (Schiffer Books, 2009) and the North American Nature Photographers Association’s annual publication Expressions 2009.
In 2014, Medow was selected as a Critical Mass finalist; awarded First Place at the Texas Photographic Society’s TPS:23 Competition, juried by Juror Susan kae Grant and 2nd Place in TPS: 27 Members Only Competition juried by Jim Casper, Founder and Editor of LensCulture. She received First Place from International Photography Awards in the Digitally Enhanced category. In 2013, she received a Special Mention of the Juror, David C. Hirsch Fine Art category in the Julia Margaret Cameron Competition and was a finalist in the 5th Pollux Awards.
In 2015, she was a finalist in the 89th Annual International Competition at The Print Center in Philadelphia. Her work was shown at The G2 Gallery in Venice, California and Lotusland in Montecito.
In my ongoing series Envisioning Habitat, I look beyond the everyday world and create a new reality shaped from the exquisite and sublime beauty of nature.
The images in the Envisioning Habitat series were photographed in the wild: the white ibis in J.N. Ding Darling National Wildlife Refuge on Sanibel Island in Florida and the saddle-billed storks in the Maasai Mara, Kenya.
When working in the field to photograph birds and landscapes and then later in my studio to select and combine the related imagery to include in my final images, I take creative liberties by commingling the bird, their scale and their fantasy environments. I imagine the essence of paradise and weave a visual narrative echoing the Hudson River Valley artists who blended multiple scenes from field notes and memory to create their idealized, romantic and emotional paintings.
Passion, preservation and a life in harmony with nature are some of the reasons I am a photographer. My hope is the viewer will connect with those ideals through my images, artwork and be mindful of the fragility and beauty of life.