Sketches: Photographer Lynn Lane

The local artist and acclaimed photographer on the art of being a people person.

By Peter Holley October 1, 2013

Tracing photographer Lynn Lane’s winding arts career can feel like entering a maze. Here he is on 183rd Street in the Bronx documenting members of the Bloods street gang in the early morning hours. There he goes tailing Joe Frasier across the country for a documentary about boxing legends. Here he is in lower Manhattan designing furniture that was in Ridley Scott’s thriller, Hannibal. There he is curating film festivals, directing music videos, shooting endless portraits and starting a foundation that documents the stories of cancer survivors like himself. He's even worked in real estate.


If there’s a key to his maze, an organizing principle of sorts, it is the study of people and the multitidues they contain within. Lane, who attended Texas A&M and University of North Texas, spent a good chunk of his education studying sociology and considers himself a social scientist with a camera.

“I really love the idea of spending prolonged periods of time with people because then you get past the surface,” he says. “Everyone has their spiel. Once you get past the spiel you start getting into who they are.”

After spending close to two decades working in New York and Europe, he returned to Houston several years ago. When he's not in the studio, you can find him guest lecturing around the city and teaching regular classes at Houston Center for Photography.

If Lane’s work has frequently been an excavation of his subject’s interior form, his latest series is largely focused on the exterior. “Kinetic Art,” a project in conjuction with NobleMotion Dance, finds Lane working with choreographers and dancers to compose moments that capture the human form “as a kinetic sculpture in a staged environment.” The photos aren’t posed so much as single shot snapshots from an artfully rendered sequence incorporating light, mist, choreography and body. Lane calls each shot a "moment within a moment."

“I shoot dance not because I’m a photographer and it’s something pretty to shoot,” he says. “I shoot dance because I love it. Not like, but love.”



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