Game Boys is a portrait series of young men engaged in a familiar pastime--they are playing video games. For the past two years, I have been photographing video game players who come to my studio, sit in the dark, and play for hours while I quietly watch and shoot. The studio setting lends a theatrical quality to this commonplace activity. Sometimes, I watch the game to see a particularly interesting sequence, but mostly I just watch the game players. I seek to explore the popular culture phenomenon of video games by examining the “gamers” who play them. Because my work is rooted in the tradition of portrait photography, I look beyond the hype surrounding video games and focus on the players themselves. Traditionally, the belief has been that a portrait could tell us a great deal about a subject: a window into a person’s inner character could be found through facial expressions. Although the expressions on my subjects may appear to be passive, the gamers in these photographs are actually performing fast-paced maneuvers and executing split-second decisions, making these portraits of intense concentration.

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