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27
Feb

Creative Process

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Over the past two years, I have been defining my visual voice, zeroing in on characters. Last year, I began looking at image grids to better understand color, wardrobe, and other patterns that may emerge from my work, helping me understand where I have been and where I want my future imagery to go.

This year, keeping a daily creative journal has revealed tremendous benefits, by forcing me to take daily steps in moving my work forward, leading to a greater understanding of myself, and the ability to communicate my vision clearly to others. Writing has taught me that I don’t always need a big idea before I can begin exploring or creating. Just showing up and putting down ideas begins to reveal the story, one step at a time. Some days feel harder than others, but I am learning to trust my instincts, and I have never felt as excited about my art as I do today.

08
Jan

The 2018 Keatley Family Picture

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The initial response to the 2018 Keatley Family Picture was what this year’s concept was all about. Deep disappointment. Confusion as to why we seemingly played it safe with nothing more than a purple theme. And uncertainty as to whether this really is the Keatleys or not.

It is true, two of the four individuals in this picture are NOT Keatleys!  There is little that I enjoy more than creating a strong response in others. You might even call me an instigator. But the choice to replace my wife and myself with our good friends had me laughing for days.

As production began on this concept, the question became “how closely do we try to resemble Nichelle and I?”  We considered leaving Jess and Brian as their natural selves, as we often are disguised in wigs and costumes in our family pictures. But if felt too obvious, and this picture needed subtlety to soar.  In the end, my hat tilt and Nichelle’s dark hair were key to pulling this off.

Many thanks to our kids for going along with my crazy ideas. Thankfully they seem to understand that they were born into this! Thank you to Brian and Jess for nailing the subtleties. Also a big thank you to Lindsey Watkins and Kristen Bonnallie for the styling magic. Retouching by GILD Studios.

10
Sep

Irish National Lottery / Lotto Plus

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I recently had the opportunity to travel to Dublin, Ireland to work with ROTHCO on the new Irish National Lottery campaign.

The Celebrations have been the Lotto house band for the last 30 years, and for 30 years, they have played every time there is a new winner. Not a bad gig, and life has been pretty good. Now, The Irish National Lottery has released a new game called Lotto Plus, and there are so many winners, the band never stops playing. They are exhausted, and at their breaking point.

Please enjoy.

This is a really big campaign in Ireland right now, and the images are apparently all over the country. I wish I could be there to see it myself, but thankfully I have a few snaps of some of the executions.

A very big thank you to Stephen Rogers for this incredible project. It was an absolute blast. Thank you also to my producer, Patrick Daly for going above and beyond. I can’t wait to return to Ireland.
Retouching by GILD Studios.

25
Jan

Wild Expression Portraits for AT&T

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One of the wonderful things about kids is you can always count on them to provide you with outside perspective. It’s so easy to get locked into a routine as an adult, but kids have a way of knocking you out of your world and seeing things in a new light. That happened to me recently as I was going through portraits from my AT&T shoot with Possible. My daughter Isla saw this BTS picture and asked, “Daddy, why are you wearing trash bags at a photo shoot?”

Trash bag suit for a coffee spit.

To which I replied, “So that man can spit coffee on me.”
With an even more confused look on her face she said, “Why would he do that!?”
I had to think about that for a second before I said,”Well, because that’s my job.” smiling proudly.

Her look at that point said it all, and in that moment I was able to appreciate and enjoy just how unusual my job is. And I wouldn’t have it any other way.

AT&T

AT&T

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28
Apr

Artist for Love

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Like many people, I’m concerned that our country may not be doing all we can to support refugees and other vulnerable, displaced people and families. One thing my wife and I do to make a difference is partner with First Aid Arts. They offer well-researched, arts-based activities and programs to refugees and other trauma survivors to promote mental health and healing.

I had the opportunity to travel to Manila with First Aid Arts in 2012 and meet some of the people they work to serve. It was a life-altering trip, and in many ways, the beginning of some major life changes for me personally. That being said, as impactful as the trip was for me individually, the work First Aid Arts is doing for people all over the world has an unimaginable impact, and it is humbling to be a witness.

Thanks for watching this video collaboration, and I hope you will consider supporting First Aid Arts’ beautiful, important work.

“First Aid Arts provides necessary skills to facilitate empathy, attachment, connection, creativity, and a renewed sense of vitality for care providers working within trauma affected communities. Their curriculum is well-researched, tested, and flexible enough to meet the needs of organizations.” –Nisha Sajnani of the Harvard Refugee Project
03
Apr

Print Mag shoot in San Francisco

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Tim Ferriss Print Mag cover by John Keatley
Tim Ferriss Print Mag cover by John Keatley

One of the fun projects I did this winter took place in San Francisco, an amazing 2-day shoot for Print Mag with Debbie Milman, Chase Jarvis, and Print Editor-in-Chief Zac Petit. Over those 2 days, I photographed more than 60 of the top creators in San Francisco (Tim Ferriss, Jessica Hische, Scott Dadich, Wendy MacNaughton, Roman Mars, Elle Luna, Josh Higgins…) for the current April issue. It was one of the most challenging and exciting shoots I have done to date, and I feel really proud of these portraits. Below are a few of my favs, and you can see more from the series on my site under Portraits.

A huge thanks to my friend Chase Jarvis for this opportunity, as well as the incredible Debbie Millman, and Zac Petit.  Thanks to GILD Studio for the incredible retouching on this portfolio also. I would encourage you to pick up a copy of this issue. The Print team put a ton of love and care into this issue, and the paper stock is pretty awesome. Also check out the interviews Chase did with everyone for a shot of inspiration.

Jen Daniel portrait by John Keatley
Jen Daniel portrait by John Keatley
Stephen Coles, Tucker Nichols, and Alvaro Villanueva portrait by John Keatley
Stephen Coles, Tucker Nichols, and Alvaro Villanueva portrait by John Keatley
Wendy MacNaughton portrait by John Keatley
Wendy MacNaughton portrait by John Keatley
Tim Ferriss portrait by John Keatley
Tim Ferriss portrait by John Keatley
Tiffany Shlain and Ken Goldberg portrait by John Keatley
Tiffany Shlain and Ken Goldberg portrait by John Keatley
Scott Dadich portrait by John Keatley
Scott Dadich portrait by John Keatley
Robin Petravic and Catherine Bailey portrait by John Keatley
Robin Petravic and Catherine Bailey portrait by John Keatley
Roman Mars portrait by John Keatley
Roman Mars portrait by John Keatley
Caroline Paul and Wendy MacNaughton portrait by John Keatley
Caroline Paul and Wendy MacNaughton portrait by John Keatley
Erik Marinovich, Sumner Stone, and James T. Edmondson portrait by John Keatley
Erik Marinovich, Sumner Stone, and James T. Edmondson portrait by John Keatley
Laurel Braitman portrait by John Keatley
Laurel Braitman portrait by John Keatley
Emily Levine portrait by John Keatley
Emily Levine portrait by John Keatley
Chase Jarvis portrait by John Keatley
Chase Jarvis portrait by John Keatley
Caroline Paul portrait by John Keatley
Caroline Paul portrait by John Keatley
Brian Singer portrait by John Keatley
Brian Singer portrait by John Keatley

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23
Mar

Uniform at Treason Gallery

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2017 started about as good as I could have ever hoped. I had my first solo exhibition, ‘Uniform’ at Treason Gallery in Seattle for the month of January.  All 17 limited edition prints from the series were on display.  3 at 43.5”x58” (edition of 3 + 2AP), and 14 prints at 24”x32” (edition of 5 + 2AP). And I have to say, seeing them in print, larger than life is pretty incredible.

The opening reception was an experience I will never forget. So many friends, family, and new faces. It was like a dream. I also added a surprise at the opening by creating a live sculpture.

If you are interested in purchasing a print, you can contact alex@treasongallery.com, or find our more on the Treason website.

All of the images can also be seen here on my site on the Uniform page.

Also check out this incredible review of ‘Uniform’ by Michael Upchurch in the Seattle Times.

One million thank you’s to Treason Gallery, and also to my friends at Top Pot, and Seattle PBR for sponsoring the opening.Treason Gallery_Kealtey Uniform_Opening-9

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Treason_Keatley_Uniform_Installation

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12
Jan

The Seattle Times review of Uniform

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Uniform

This week has been pretty exciting.  After wrestling with self doubt, fear, and vulnerability for the last year and a half while working on ‘Uniform,’ the series is finally complete.  Well, complete in a practical sense I suppose, but in other ways, I feel the work is just now beginning.

Last Thursday was the opening of ‘Uniform’, my first solo exhibition at Treason Gallery.  It was a night I will never forget, and I still feel like I am up in the clouds to be quite honest.  Not only seeing the images printed and displayed in such a beautiful space, but seeing people interacting with the prints and talking about them.  That made me happy.

As if that wasn’t enough excitement, I was invited to New Day Northwest on King 5 Seattle to talk about my ‘Uniform’ exhibition.  Below is the full video interview about ‘Uniform’ with Margaret Larson.

Art critic, Michael Upchurch wrote an amazing review of ‘Uniform’ in The Seattle Times, stating  “‘Uniform’, his first fine-art photography solo show, is a breakthrough and a revelation.” Wow. I am speechless.

‘Uniform’ is on display at Treason Gallery in Seattle through January 28, 2017. Make sure to check it out, and thank you for your support!

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15
Dec

Debut Solo Exhibition ‘UNIFORM’

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Big news!  My debut solo exhibition ‘Uniform’ will be opening on Thursday January 5th, 2017 at Treason Gallery in Seattle. What!? Excitement doesn’t begin to describe how I am feeling right now. On display will be 17 large format prints from my ‘Uniform’ series.

Doors open at 6:00pm, and the gallery will be open until 9:00pm.  Mark your calendar, and invite your friends.  It’s gonna be a fun party.

Click (here) to go to the event page and add this to your calendar, RSVP, and get directions. See you in a few weeks!

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14
Nov

Interview with Stitch

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Uniform by John Keatley on Stitch
Uniform by John Keatley on Stitch

Thought I would pass along my recent interview with Stitch about Uniform and some other thoughts about photography.  Enjoy.

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