Lux Botanica: The Photography of Doug McLarty

May 2 - July 21, 2013


In the galleries of the Canton Museum of Art, nature shows its cosmic dance through the lens and talent of Doug McLarty’s photography in the new exhibit, Lux Botanica.

A retired Air Force colonel, McLarty’s artistic vision has been described as “combining a sculptor’s sense of form, a painter’s sense of composition and a cinematographer’s sense of light,” to capture archetypical portraits of nature. The Museum is pleased to showcase more than 30 of the Xenia, Ohio, resident’s
dramatic images.

Canton Museum of Art Executive Director M.J. Albacete said, “We are pleased to welcome Doug and his inspiring natural perspectives to the Museum. Doug’s work forms a complementary bond with the watercolors, oils and sketches in our adjacent Joseph O’Sickey exhibit. The images appear as flowing from the vision of the artist and indeed nature itself.” 

Over the past 40 years, McLarty has photographed botanical images throughout Europe, the Caribbean, Florida and the western United States. McLarty’s photos employ eye-catching botanical designs, unusual floral combinations and whimsical creations to help us enjoy nature and all of its shapes, forms and perspectives.  Much of his extensive portfolio was created using traditional black and white film and darkroom processing techniques.  However, he now makes use digital images exclusively — through a process called “scanography” — to reveal unique patterns and color combinations for his audience
(see below).

McLarty began his “Nature By Design” color photo series in 2006 when he formed his Signature Focus business. The artist credits British sculptor, environmentalist and photographer Andy Goldsworthy, glass artist Dale Chihuly and architect Frank Gehry for inspiring his current work — stunning captures of nature’s beauty in unique clarity.

McLarty’s work can be found in public and private collections across the United States.  Nearly all images in the exhibit are for sale. See a Museum representative or visit ( for details.

Bringing Nature Into Brilliant Focus:  The Process of "Scanography"
“My images are not made with a traditional camera.  Instead, they are created using a modified digital scanning process called ‘Scanography’. The techniques I use embrace the limited depth-of-field of a scanner and its unusual quality of light, not present when using traditional digital camera based photography. 

“Scanography is defined as the process of capturing digitized images of objects for the purpose of creating printable art using a flatbed “photo” scanner with a CCD (charge-coupled device) array-capturing device. After placing the objects on a scanner, I then create the desired background.  Without the distortion of a traditional camera lens, highly detailed resolution is uniform throughout the image, regardless of the size of the printable media.  The lighting effects from the sliding sensor beneath the object, coupled with overhead effects involving lighting and movement, result in a 3-D-like imaging of intense sharpness and detail. When viewing the finished image one almost feels they can look around the edge of a leaf and see the back-side.”
– Doug McLarty

Images Above (clockwise, l to r):
Scheherazade, 2009, photograph-scanography, 41" x 41"
Red Leaf Study I, 2008, photograph-scanography, 30" x 37"
Azul I, 2011, photograph-scanography, 28-1/2" x 37-1/2"
Toucan Island, 2010, photograph-scanography, 18” x 24”