Overcast rainy days. Good tap water temps makes it easy to stay inside and work. Got all the 5X7 film processed through Xtol and all the negatives proofed. Really helps
taking the proofs through a scanner and looking at the images electronically. I'm severe editor of my own work. Plus I don't want a negative I have to fight with. These are all pretty balanced shots and I won't have to perform any darkroom miracles to get a print I like.
Shot about 60 negatives. Approx 20 different scenes. If I get a chance to go back I know right where I want to start and the light I want to start in.
The Black Giant. I think the Giant is why you can't camp on the South Side. Not even the eagles nest over there.
Katie actually took a few photos of me working!
450mm lens off the roof at dusk in a light breeze. Deardorff was stretched all the way out. Probably won't make a big print, but the light was so beautiful that I shot a piece of film anyway.
Going to have to have a very light hand with the printing on this one and keep the stone from looking too heavy.
Wish I had put a 90mm Super Angulon on a lens board. Needed all the room I could get in here.
Three variations to pick from. Wide angle is the best. I think I can make a very delicate print.
Here is a digital file while I was waiting.
As you get close, it looks like a million images ready to be made...then you got a little nutty trying to tease one out. Very deceptive.
Morning light washing up against the side of the South Dike.
I tried to be VERY careful with my filtration this trip. Easy to overdo it in New Mexico.
Climber's Cave on the West face. Pretty sporty climb. Once I retreated to this cave in a big rainstorm and the roof turned into a waterfall. I finally got tired of watching the lighning through the water, rolled out my bag and went to sleep.
Digital file of the cave.
All negatives processed in Xtol. Nice enough set. Just starting to get a few proofs out.
Shot this exact scene before but you never know about the light.
And here it is. From about 10 years ago.
Interior of Pueblo Bonito. The floors and ceilings are out for three stories up and it looks different than any of the builders could ever have imagined. Smallish doorways on the ground floor, has a kind of tiny cathedral feel to it.
Climbers built this to get to the first hold on the overhanging lip of the cave. More shadow detail in a real print. These are scanned from quick proofs. It does help to work with the image a bit even electronically to get to know it before making a 20X24.
Never seen a photo of this. Tough conditions to get to it. Love to see it on a cloudy day. Direct afternoon sunlight tangles it up.
Katie and I are gearing up for a little drive in the country this weekend. The turn-around point is Shiprock, New Mexico. Going to spend a night at Chaco Canyon, where I have never been. Driving my little 4-runner and taking my little camera and a few sheets of film.
Here's the morning view out a very comfortable ledge up on the West face close to the climber's cave.
This is a rock shape on the ledge. Worked it a couple of times but never quite teased out the final image. May add a little more space around it. Maybe I am too tight.
Hope to have a safe and happy trip. I just went through my negatives to look at proofs from 1998 to present. There is a whole unprinted show in there. Few rock walls I would like to puzzle out and hope to see some spectacular air. We'll see. Shiprock, besides the poltergeists, always has a few surprises.
OK. NOT this month. Negatives have been sitting next to the enlarger since I processed them in November. Shot in August at Lake Erie while we were up for the National Matches. Quite a struggle. I kept moving closer as the light got better and better and lost the shape of the leaves up above. When I proofed them I liked the first shot best. Might be a lesson in that.
My favorite pear tree in the whole world. We've had a long relationship. This week. Was back there the last two days. The peak of the bloom is just a couple of days. Might get a moonrise on Tuesday evening here. Rare that the bloom and the moon line up.
Our stairs and our personal pear tree. White cat out in the yard.
This is down below with another. Tossed a negative without the clouds. Hit three in a row in just a few minutes. The roof from the side, the gates and this.
Such an honest little field! The men who have worked it have been here all week. Yesterday one drove by to tell me they would leave the gate open for me when they left. Growing roses.
From top of the truck. Pretty windy so it isn't the sharpest. Whole image built around the gopher mounds.
Scanning proofs. Not any dodging or burning, though I do edit out a few spots here and there. Its just pretty late in life but I really feel like I am at the top of my game. Shooting single sheets of my holders. I've shot both sides for years but just gave that up this year. Trying to quit "worrying" the image so much, just see it and shoot.
All these negatives a very well behaved. Proofed on #2 paper. No printing problems ahead. Working with the light at the peak of its revealing quality, having it on my side in every negative.
For an article in the Detroit Press Sunday Magazine about "beatniks." He isn't shaving. He's hanging out all day in the coffee shop drinking ice-cream shakes. I't's a travesty!
Ecological disaster. Ran in the Detroit paper March 24, 1949.
There are many newspaper archives going up on Ebay full of wonderful original prints. The physical condition ranges from pretty good to awful but the prices are very low for really historical artifacts. I think my oldest is 1929 and the newest 1968.
As much as I recommend avoiding looking at other artists work, if you are a working artist, (if it's good, you get influenced and if it's bad there's no point.), photographers MUST know, understand and love the visual process. I've got a little pile of striking images made in the Detroit area, WWII images, snow images, et. Quite wonderful examples of the photographic art made by photographers long since gone.
Early Boing 707 and a posed photo. I doubt he is really "working" on it.
Isn't this a wonderful posed photograph? Graflex 4X5 with a big flash bulb to fill the shadows. Just the kind of happy image an editor needs two or three per day.
Press photo of the auto buffet on a Chicago area train.
Heavily retouched Kingfisher from 1929!
Winter walker "weather shot for the Detroit paper in 1961.
God bless these good people who made these images.
Photographer from Tyler Texas. Images in collections and museums in the region. Still using film for exhibitions. Commercial work in digital.
Contact for sales or assignment at Blackfork(six)atAOLdotcom