Michael Winters, a Portsmouth native, is known in the creative community as an alternative photographer. However, outside of his full time passion as a photographer, Winters is a full time counselor at Portsmouth High School.
Winters got into photographer about 10 years ago when he decided to move up from his “point and shoot” camera after he discovered lighting. Lighting offered him a whole new world once he learned what it could do.
“I never stop learning. Even screwing up with light, you get pretty cool stuff. I don’t think I’m proficient with it, and I hope I never am, if I do, then I’m done.”
Although often times an artist or model will come to Winters with an idea, his own inspiration behind the scenes he creates comes from the Golden Age of Hollywood film Noir from the 30s, 40s, and 50s, before blockbuster took over with CGI. Everything is about the lighting for Winters. It’s the lighting, along with drawing inspiration from seeing what others are doing and reading that gets his creative juices flowing.
Each production created involves hairs stylists, fashion designers, and make up artists, a lot of whom are from the Portsmouth community that come together with creativity in mind. None of it has money involved, Winters explains, “it’s a real collaboration…everyone throws in there own expertise into a project and we get a final outcome.” Winters has worked with collaborators such as Chemistry Hair Salon, and artists such as Sajian Ka, Darien Brea, and Yemi Jolaoso.
Photography for Winters is all about being creative. He’s asked all of time why he doesn’t transition to full-time, but he believes that if he’s a photographer full-time, then his passion will become work. Down the line Winters hopes to have his own studio space where he can create on his own time and not scheduled time. With his own space, he hopes to broaden his horizons and explore more techniques.
A new architectural icon
Originally built in 1923, the Memorial Bridge has become an iconic part of our city. It was rebuilt and reopened in 2013. The original was designed by J.A.L. Waddell and the new one echoes the look and configuration of the original, but represents a sleek, modern form that focuses on the realities of bridge design in the 21st century.