Heather Frederick of Belfast, director of VoxPhotographs, and Jim Nickelson of Camden, of Nickelson Editions, have announced the launching of a joint venture, FOCUSMAINE.COM. The name comes from the obvious connection to the camera, but also as a vehicle to focus attention on Maine’s fine art photography community, said Frederick.

“There’s a need to develop a collector base from the ground up for fine art photographs as seasoned art collectors are mostly defining their collections with paintings, prints and sculpture. But fine art photographs are relatively new to the art market and we want to focus collectors’ attention on Maine’s large and hugely talented community,” she said.

Starting Friday, Oct. 1, those signed up at FOCUSMAINE.COM to receive its e-mail notifications will be introduced weekly to a Maine-based fine art photographer. One photograph by that artist will be for sale on the site, beginning with a small $50 print in an edition of 50 and then increasing in size and price to match the artist’s current prices and sizes. Most artists will only be featured on FOCUSMAINE.COM once every two or three years, and those featured will run the gamut from nationally acclaimed to emerging.

“One of the most important goals of FOCUSMAINE.COM is to provide a forum where collectors can connect with Maine’s fine art photographers one at a time – learning where they live in the state, what process they use to make photographs and what inspires their work. E-mails and Web sites for the artist and dealers will be included, and all future events that include that artist’s work will be listed on our events page,” said Frederick.

Education is another goal, she added. There will be glossary of terms and links to Web sites where more about fine art photography can be explored. A third component of FOCUSMAINE.COM involves donations to Maine’s art institutions that exhibit or purchase works by FOCUSMAINE.COM’s featured artists.

“Jim and I are committed to setting aside 10% of our revenue from every larger print sold into a Photography Fund that will enable institutions to add our featured artists to their permanent collections or help fund exhibits of Maine’s contemporary fine art photographers,” Frederick said, saying the business is committed to building a future for Maine’s fine art photographers will involve creating a marketable entity that includes Maine’s artists, galleries, art institutions and, soon, collectors.

Frederick started the Web gallery VoxPhotographs in 2007 and represents 12 of Maine’s fine art photographers. Nickelson, a master digital printer, started Nickelson Editions in 2009 and is a photographer represented by VoxPhotographs.

For more information, visit focusmaine.com or contact Frederick at 323-1214.

VillageSoup Art/Entertainment Editor Dagney Ernest can be reached at 207-594-4401 or by e-mail to dernest@villagesoup.com.