Matt Stock picked up a camera at an early age. Growing up he had two passions: photography and science. After deviating from the traditional path and his original plan of becoming a doctor, he realized that his passion in life lay in photography and not medicine. Matt formally studied at the internationally renowned Miami Ad School on Miami Beach, Florida but as a life-long learner he has spent the past eight years developing his signature style of Painting with Light in the Dark®. This unique process was inspired by the Renaissance painting technique sfumatto, the photographic zone system, and other artists who have built careers developing techniques that fuse art and science. Matt’s knowledge of his craft, his technical learning and application, as well as his unique, innovative techniques make his photographs true works of art. His new innovations have been on the forefront of cutting edge trends in his field, leading his peers toward a new genre of photography. He is a real visionary who seamlessly weaves science and history into his art.
Matt describes his technique akin to “…sculpting with darkness as a medium. I chip away the shadows to reveal light and dimension the way a sculptor chips away at a block of marble to reveal the sculpture within.” On location, he literally paints his subjects with light whether he is lighting a shipwreck while balancing on a ladder in the middle of the ocean, or painstakingly lighting an abandoned marine stadium. Using multiple photos taken from a variety of angles with different lighting conditions, he combines the otherwise-similar images into a single luminous composition. A perfectionist by nature, he is able to perfectly expose and control every aspect of his final composition in a way that only a few photographers have learned how to do. Matt was asked to speak about his unique technique and perspective on darkness at TEDx in Coconut Grove, a breakout event of the renowned TED Conferences held annually in California that bring inspired thinkers from the worlds of technology, entertainment and design together to learn from and further inspire others.
A Florida native, he finds inspiration in the natural elements of water, earth, and sky. Also drawn toward untold stories and subjects that are looking for a voice and a champion, he works cooperatively with national and state parks, non-profit organizations, and historical societies to raise awareness about the world around us. Currently, he is telling the story of the Florida Mangroves supported by Biscayne National Park in a series titled “Hidden Groves” as well as his critically acclaimed series “Wrecked,” which explores the decomposition of ship wrecks as they return into the natural elements from which they are forged. Finally, Matt Stock has started a personal journey to photograph and follow the footsteps of the photographic legends that inspired him to choose his life’s path. He is starting with his favorite photographer, Ansel Adams and his work at Glacier National Park.
Matt Stock has been recognized by his peers being juried into national art exhibitions and earning him several awards, including four Honorable Mentions in the prestigious International Photography Awards; three in 2007 and one in 2010. Matt has also won an Honorable Mention in the Photography Masters Cup. In 2014 Matt was recognized as a leader in night photography by being selected as one of 5 photographers featured in Shutterbug Magazine’s 2014 Expert Photo Techniques magazine as well as having his work on the cover. Matt’s work is also in the permanent collection at the National Trust for Historic Spaces.