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The holidays came early for photographer and Philadelphia Police Officer Daniel Glass. On Wednesday, December 17, Officer Glass was presented with the first place prize for the amateur category of the 15th National Arts Program exhibition at Philadelphia in City Hall. Creative Philadelphia caught up with Officer Glass to find out how he finds time for his passion, photography, and how he came to decide to submit his work to this year’s City Employees Art Show.
Creative Philadelphia: What is your job with the City of Philadelphia?
Daniel Glass: I am a Philadelphia Police Officer assigned to the Bomb Disposal Unit.
CP: Are your colleagues aware of your artistic talent?
DG: As for my colleagues they know that one of my hobbies is photography and that I take photos on occasion.
CP: Do you have a background in art? Can you tell us where it all began?
DG: I have always had an interest in photography and had my first camera while still in grade school taking photos of anything and everything. While serving in the Army I found the camera to be an invaluable way of documenting the places and things I had seen. However, I had lost some of my interest and set down the camera for a few years. With the advent of digital photography my interest had been renewed and I started shooting again and always seem to have a camera in reach.
CP: Can you tell us about the art you submitted for this year’s show?
DG: My submissions for this year’s show are two photographs taken at night. I had found an interesting video tutorial on night photography and the use of light to “paint an image” and have always had an interest in night photography so I decided to put some of the tips and pointers to use and set out one night after work driving around the city until about 3 AM looking for different subjects to shoot. I shot about 123 photos that night and jokingly refer to them as the “Insomnia Collection”. The first, Penn In Ink, is a photograph of City Hall from Broad Street looking North. I was pleased with the result and feel the lighting was perfect for what I wanted to capture. The second submission, Head House Flare, is a photograph of the Head House Square Fountain looking north. This photo I enjoyed taking and have several variations of due to the constant changing color of the fountain lights.
CP: What does it mean for you to have the opportunity to show your art in City Hall?
I think it is a great opportunity to allow my work to be seen at City Hall. Initially, I was not sure if my work would be up to snuff but was told by a friend that I have an eye for a good picture and should share it with others. After some convincing I decided this would be the perfect time.
Daniel’s artwork and that of other City of Philadelphia employees and their families are currently on view on the 2nd and 4th floors of City Hall from now until January 30, 2015.