I am a lover of traditional folk tales, especially those that involve animals. "Bakeneko" or "Ghost Cat" comes from to us from Japan and is used in Kabuki theater hence my treatment of the subject as a mask.
I've taken significant liberties with the original material subject, mainly in color choices. The overall effect adds more dimension to the otherwise flat image.
Symbols have always interested me. When I was a kid, I would scratch these obscure glyphs all over everything. I'm sure driving my parents nuts when it was into my bedroom furniture.
I've been developing this idea into a black and white series examining calligraphy and basic graphic symbols. In this case, "Water" is the Chinese character over source material from Ithaca Falls in New York. I wanted to use this particular image as water is a very cerebral element to me as well as being calming. Ithaca Falls plummets just below the campus of Cornell University, the epitome of the enlightened mind traveling and gaining momentum.
Byron O'Neal was born in Knoxville, Tennessee, the eldest son of two teachers. Drawn to the arts from an early age, he worked for over a decade in various technical and production positions for live theatre, musical artists, film, and television. His university studies culminated with a degree in Environmental Science and Anthropology, and it is at this intersection between art and the larger human environment where Byron's photographic interests lie.
Now in his second year as a professional photographer, Byron's award-winning work has been shown in numerous gallery shows in the U.S. and Canada. His unique, cutting-edge work also graces the walls of several hotels around the country, and he continues to offer custom photography for discriminating patrons. Currently, Byron makes his home in Oklahoma with his wife, their young son, and two dogs. He enjoys traveling to gather new ideas and subject matter.
The photography of Byron O'Neal blends imagination, satire, emotion, and symbolism in innovative ways. He gleans his inspiration from the world through a lens, sometimes dreamy, sometimes gritty, always creative.
"I want to convey the beauty of our world in some way through each image. It is everywhere, all around us, sometimes in shocking or seemingly mundane places. It can take your breath away with its simplicity. Using images to transmit ideas and feelings transcends the limitations of language the way few other things can.