Beyond the naked eye

Growing up, Vincent Brady couldn’t stay away from the camera. Since he was 6 years old, Brady said he has been naturally drawn to photography, casually taking photographs “just like everyone else in the world.”

It wasn’t until later in life, at Lansing Community College, that Brady, 29, started to learn the tricks of the trade after graduating in 2013, Brady became a fulltime photographer.

He makes time to volunteer 40-50 hours a week at the Windwalker Underground Gallery in Charlotte. The gallery is where he displays his work, helps host events, collaborates with other artists and perfects his craft.

“I’ve seen first hand how (art) benefits a re-emerging community,” Brady said. “(Art) is very important to me.”

For the past three years in Charlotte, Brady has been pairing nighttime phenomena with normal landscapes, making images that play on one’s perception of reality. He has been experimenting with long exposures and micro lenses to capture more detail and 360 degree panoramas.

“Using the night sky and time lapse, you can see the stars move as the earth revolves,” Brady said.

That is definitely evident in the image on the cover of this issue. Brady described the image like poetry, a blend of light of the stars and the bright lights of the school house with the center of the Milky Way drifting across the summer sky.

Brady also has a canned answer ready when people ask him what the work means.

“Well, Betsy Devos is an alien trying to steal our schools,” Brady joked. But in truth, he likes others to get whatever they want from the images he creates.

“I like the social dialogue through art,” Brady said. “It’s always nice to see how it gets people talking.”

When Brady followed his dream, and accepted that he wanted to be a full-time artist, he found that there was no “better education than just shooting,” but he still brushes up every once in a while.

“I spent a lot of time at the library, I would flip through magazines and books and when something caught my eye I would read about it,” Brady said.

Of course, now his time is spent primarily out in the field.

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