Joe Sale

Human Transformations - Burning Man, 2019


Black and white negatives and medium format film on acrylic


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Joe Sale (American).

Owner and professional photographer at Tampa Image Factory, Joe Sale is happiest creating memorable and lasting art through his photography. He specializes in capturing his one-of-a-kind perspective on people, places, businesses and products, by translating their stories through his camera lens and onto prints.

“I stumbled into photography at the age of 35, after living a life most would consider average.” Sale explains, “I needed a drastic change in my life, searching for something to stimulate my mind, something to light a fire in my heart, I was craving an outlet to express myself...and that's when photography changed everything.” 

“Since picking up a used Nikon camera in 2013, I have dedicated my existence to learning the art and science of photography. I am entirely self-taught, mostly learning through making mistakes, trying new and different techniques both in camera and in post. While I earn a living with my commercial photography, it's the artistic and creative endeavors that fuel my desires. I try to venture out to places I have never been, meet people I would normally never meet, capture the unexpected and in the end, create unique imagery and artwork. It's this internal craving to experience the 'unseen' which led me to my first Burning Man in 2016. 

Making it to Burning Man is one thing, making it at Burning Man is another. I wanted to be amongst the world's most creative doers and makers to see if I belonged, to see if I could contribute to the community. There I was at Burning Man, the epicenter of art, culture and personal expression and I couldn't even muster the courage or ability to take a picture. I was in complete awe. For the first time in my life, I was experiencing culture shock, lost in my mind, in an unfamiliar world and then it happened...I saw the magic and I captured it. My first photo ever taken at Burning Man is of a women's empowerment ceremony (taken from a comfortable distance) on 35mm black and white film. A moment which will never happen again, captured forever.

Fast forward to 2019, after my 4th consecutive Burning Man, with more than 5,000 images, a lifetime of memories and not a single idea as to what to do with any of it. Creating art can be easy, it just has to be done. Creating significant art amongst a community of talented artists is far more challenging. Much like I stumbled into photography, I came across a photo-blending technique which uses a semi-chaotic method of overlaying images. I decided to apply this method along with other blending techniques to create a series of Burning Man artwork entitled 'Human Transformations.' When I hear the saying 'a photo can say a thousand words,' I imagine what 50, 100, 300 plus images blended together can say. For each of the four years, I will create a 50x100 signature piece, incorporating all of the images from that year, blended together. I will also create smaller one-off pieces from the different film cameras I use each year. 

It's my hope these works will allow those who view them to see something different each time, to feel, to inquire and to crave.

I often wonder what my life would be like if I discovered photography at an earlier age, much like how different I would be if I discovered Burning Man at a younger age. My four years at Burning Man have transformed my artistic vision and helped shape my life. Little did I know that would be the case when I came up with the idea 'Human Transformations' on my first media credential submission in 2016. Although it took four years to materialize, you are amongst the first to see one of the finished blended pieces.” 

This piece is final sale and not eligible for return.

Boundless Space… The Possibilities of Burning Man.

Height: 40 inches / 101.6 cm
Width: 40 inches / 101.6 cm
Depth: 4 inches / 10.16 cm
Condition Report

This work is in good condition overall.

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