Peter Stranks has been a Toronto based photographer for over thirty years. A Ryerson University graduate, his assignments have taken him throughout North America and as far away as Morocco. Stranks has worked on national advertising campaigns, magazine covers, and editorial features, working most recently on advertising for the film industry with celebrities like Steve Martin, Drew Barrymore, Katie Holmes, Eugene Levy, Harvey Keitel, and Ian Somerhalder.
In 2008, he completed a highly successful one man show at OMAH, where one of his pieces was acquired for the permanent collection. He revisited the gallery in 2017, when one of his pieces was selected for inclusion in the prestigious Franklin Carmichael Canadian Landscape Exhibition.
In 2017, Stranks won Applied Arts Magazine National Community Annual Advertising Photography Award, and his image was used for the cover of the April 2017 publication.
While teaching at different community colleges over the years has brought great rewards, the excitement and joy of being a photographer brought Stranks back to his true love, and in 2018 he left teaching to devote his energies to shooting full time, beginning with two new productions for Netflix.
The Focus on Simcoe show delves into Stranks’ personal study and exploration of the human shadow. Past work exploring men’s issues, with workshops led by Robert Bly, Michael Meade, James Hillman and Marion Woodman have had a strong influence on his work. The images are based in postmodern expressionism, wherein he sets up constructed scenes, involving months of preparation and generally large crews, to create images that explore and express his need to find answers to what has happened in the past, seeking answers to make sense of the present.
Stranks is currently writing a book titled, Photography, Creativity, and the Bag We Drag Behind Us.
-Peter H. Stranks