Arthur Meehan was born in New Jersey in 1968 and studied at the School of Visual Arts (SVA) in Manhattan, New York City – widely considered to be one of the leading art schools in the United States. His artistic heroes are the sculptor Rodin and photographer Edward Weston. Arthur is inspired by natural beauty – pure and unadorned as nature intended and this informs his beautiful studies. His journey quite simply is ‘through the heart’.
He has photographed for a number of companies including De Beers and his work has appeared in amongst others: 125 Magazine, Exit, Black & White, The Sunday Times, The Guardian, The Observer, Esquire and Wallpaper. Behance showcases Arthur╒s work on a regular basis, their curators highlighting his pieces for focus on a specific area of the site called Photography Served. Arthur continues to work between London, Paris, New York and Denmark drawing inspiration for new material.
1. How and when did you become interested in photography?
I was 18 and my family sent me to a community college hoping that I would get a business degree. I went to visit a friend one day at his photography class and he was in the darkroom printing. When he put the print in the developer and an image appeared,I was hooked. I enrolled in a photo class the next semester and just loved it. From there I went to Art school in N.Y. for one year and then had no money to continue. One of my teachers heard of my dilemma and set me up with a job in a photo studio. It was a very technical place,almost like a science lab. It was not the place for me but I stayed a few years and learned everything there is to know about photography. I eventually left and started doing my own thing.
2. Is there any artist/photographer who inspired your art?
My first inspiration came from the sculptor Auguste Rodin. Painters have always been a big influence for me. Egon Schiele,Lucien Freud,Francis Bacon,Miquel Barcelo, and Anslem Kiefer are a few Artists that inspire me.As far as photographers go I was very influenced by Edward Weston’s work and how he lived his life.I also get inspiration from nature. I like walking in the forest looking at all of the natural shapes and I think about how it relates to nude bodies.
3. What is it about nude photography that interest you the most?
I really am just in love with the female form. I find it endlessly fascinating and inspiring.
4. How do you find the models to work on your projects?
I am always looking for models. Many of my models have been girlfriends or friends of friends. Sometimes I search out certain models from agencies. Sometimes women see my work and they approach me to take their photo.
5. Why do you work in black and white rather than colour?
I really like the timeless quality and the mood that BW offers. Plus the whole darkroom thing is wonderful.
6. How much preparation do you put into taking a photograph/series of photographs?
I think about pictures all of the time. I have some very loose ideas but nothing is ever set in stone. I really try not to have any preconceived ideas because I find that it always changes the second the model enters the room. I work with daylight and shoot everything on film. I use all different types of cameras,35mm,4×5,6×7, and a polaroid land camera. I don’t shoot in a studio. I shoot everything in my home. I like the feeling of shooting in a space that has been lived in,it creates a very comfortable, easy going mood. I also like the way the light reacts to all of the furniture and clutter of my home. All of my work is hand printed and toned.
7. What future plans do you have? What projects would you like to accomplish?
At the moment I am shooting a series with dancers from the Royal Ballet in Copenhagen. I have also started shooting private commissions of nude pregnant women witch is turning out to be a very beautiful and emotional collection of photos.