I am occasionally awed by the quality of the images that I come across that are products of photographers with whom I am, until that moment, sadly ignorant. This realization is a reminder to me (in addition to my own ignorance) that the art to which I am drawn is not only the result of a few masters, but often is the product of capable individuals who often remain largely 'under the radar'. The increasing ability to share reproductions of visual art on the internet is an exciting trend and perhaps a worthy initial step towards broadening artistic potential!
Photography is for me largely about discovery and challenge. The personal search for compelling photographic subject matter can be exhilarating. However, exciting visual 'discoveries' that have the potential to make interesting prints are for me relatively rare events; photographing the natural world is often dependent on a variety of factors that are not readily controlled or anticipated. And when visual elements, atmosphere, and mood do all come together, two subsequent challenges still remain: effective image 'capture' and creative interpretation of the final image. Ultimately, my goal is to occasionally make intriguing and beautiful prints. Hopefully, this website is one way to begin to share with you some of the excitement, and perhaps occasional mystery, of original visual discovery that I experience.
Many of the images you will see on this website began as large format (e.g., 4x5, 5x7, 8x10 inch) black-and-white negatives, made with view cameras and of course view camera lenses. And as long as subjects don't move too rapidly, I enjoy photographing with my no-longer made view cameras, tripod, lenses, and gear. After negatives have been exposed and I return to a darkroom, sheet film negatives are individually developed according to the original subject brightness range and intended final rendition. I value my experience with traditional photographic processing and archival printmaking. But I also embrace the ability to interface analog and digital technologies that for me seem offer the 'best of both worlds'. In addition to using analog negatives for direct printing, the negatives can be scanned on a high-resolution graphic arts scanner (Eversmart Pro II) to yield extremely detailed digitized files for print making (see below) and the same scans may also be utilized for online sharing but at greatly reduced file sizes. When necessary I also use smaller format analog cameras, as well as digital-capture cameras, and these are additional sources of black-and-white as well as the occasional color images.
Final, "real" prints, the sort that can be held in your hands or hung on a wall, can be the product of several strategies. Nuanced creative control of certain printing processes (e.g., contrast and ‘burning and dodging’) can now be more carefully accomplished as part of a digital workflow than was ever possible with analog-only printing. Specific printing options currently include: 1) Traditional silver-gelatin prints can be made with an analog negative and an enlarger, or with a large negative contact printed directly on to silver-gelatin emulsion. 2) Ink-jet pigment prints, that rival or exceed traditional silver prints in image quality and longevity, can be made from scanned digital files of analog or digital captured images using either wide-format Epson 3880 or Epson 4000 pigment printers. 3) "Precision digital negatives" (see Mark Nelson's site, precisiondigitalnegative.com), printed on transparency film from scanned analog negatives or other digital files, can be used to contact print either silver-gelatin or handcrafted platinum-palladium, or other 'alternative', photographic papers.
I hope you enjoy the website images. Note that there may be multiple pull-down sub-headings, for example 'Barrier Islands' currently has 8 pages including the introductory page. Although the small photos will 'click to enlarge', I think it is fair to say that the images are more interesting when experienced up close and in person as real prints! If you would like to comment, please check out the Notes & Comment page.