May 29, 2008

Another Step Back...

Music | Trouble by Ray Lamontagne

With the contents of this box, I take another step towards my goal, but also a leap backwards as I go back to processing film. This will take me way back because I haven't processed 4 x 5 film in over 20 years! I'm pretty excited as I slowly gather all of my materials to create my negatives. As most of my contemporaries travel along with the digital process, I'm meeting new peers that share my love for film. I'm still a ways away from printing my first contact print, but I'm on edge waiting to get there!

May 25, 2008

So Cool...

Music | Save Tonite by Eagle Eye Cherry

May 20, 2008


Music | Here With Me by Dido

I'm involved now and I'm seeing so many images in my head. I photographed Jenna over a week ago and this particular shot stayed in my head, though initially I dismissed it. But through out the following days, it kept surfacing to my brain until just about an hour ago, I pulled it out and played with the processing. Since I'm in a large format frame of mind, I've been playing with the crop of my digital images as well. I think I've got a very nice photograph, that almost never came to be...

May 19, 2008


Music | The Tribes of New York by Ornette Coleman

I had the idea of photographing Joni this morning and by the afternoon, I had the Mini North Light Studio (aka the dining room) set up ready to go. My last 2 portrait sessions have been quick with hardly the amount of exposures I thought I would have taken.

I love the concept of using ambient light coming thru a north facing window with just a reflector on the opposite side to light a portrait. I've written about this before but I can't get over the magical qualities of something so simple...

May 17, 2008

Music | Show Me Love by Kate Havenevik

As I begin to lay down the first words of this post, I'm listening to the song above in honor of my asskicking kid who last night sang it in front of a crowd of peers at the school's Talent Show.

Often while we're driving in the car, we listen to various types of music, often some jazz, electronica and lots of female vocals. She caught on to Kate's song, Show Me Love and decided she wanted to sing it months ago for what culminated to yesterday's performance. With some technical difficulties in the beginning, she rolled off an amazingly and surprising performance.

She has never sung in front of a crowd, and only once before performed solo which was last years talent show playing a Zither.

I'm extremely proud my my daughter, having the urge, the desire to face her fears and execute! I love you Dara!

May 15, 2008


Music | Come Sunday by Charles Lloyd

William will be the 3rd portrait of 5 that will hopefully be in a show in July. I'm not sure if this is the image or another from today's shooting. There are a lot to choose from!

May 14, 2008

2nd Go Around...

Music | Some Lessons by Melody Gardot

After learning some lessons from the last shoot using the 4 x 5, todays shoot went much smoother. Everything was all ready to go from the start. The biggest difference was using a totalight for focusing and composing. Once I had the shot lined up, the light switch went off and the magic of the North Light took over. Working with the camera was much easier, mostly because I wasn't stressed from the outset. I rolled off 8 sheets of the Polaroid relatively quickly. No more polaroid... I'm kind of glad it is gone. I didn't like this batch as the sepia was just too neon like.

So unless I find some fresh Polaroid Type55, I'll be shooting film for the next 4 x 5 shoot. Progress!

May 12, 2008

Next Time...

Music | Song of the Inuit by Charles Lloyd

Photographing using a large format camera is not an easy task... So long as there is motion to my quest, I don't often feel like I need to rush. Today was not a good day to be using the 4 x 5 camera. I was not at all in tune to the basic movements of creating a photo on my ground glass. Dark cloth kept getting misplaced, the loupe, focus in or out, exposures up and down... I felt like I was trying to move, but ended up in the same place I started. Suddenly, fear came over me and I intuitively reached for the slr and finished the shoot with it. In hind sight, I know I did not prepare for this shoot, to be shooting with the 4 x 5. I'll be more aware, more careful and prepare for what I need to do to produce a photograph using a large format camera, next time...

I will say, even a bad large format polaroid has some redeeming qualities to it. Bad exposures and mis aligned tilts, there are something to these images that only I will ever see. There is still beauty in them I find alluring. Maybe to a few that have my sensibilities will see what I see...

So what I had envisioned with the large format, I did not even attempt. At the point of reaching for the slr, I changed the shot entirely, but kept my 4 x 5 proportion in the back of my head...

May 03, 2008


Music | Are You Threatening Me? by Hagans

23 Sandy Gallery is hosting one of the most important exhibitions that I've seen in a very long time. Resurrection, a perfectly timed show for my own advancement in going back to shooting large format and the desire to learning alternative processes has wonderful examples of Platinum Palladium, Ambrotype, Tin Type, Photogravure, and even a Daguerreotype, along with various other "exotic" processes.

Seeing original works of these historic processes was a treat to see. Modern photographers using the old techniques put a nice bend to the show. I'll be visiting the exhibition again, to gain more inspiration.

by Michael Mazzeo
New York, NY
Jo B

Ruby Ambrotype, Wet-Plate Collodion on Black Glass
Image size: 8 x 10 inches

May 02, 2008


Music | The Stride by Abdullah Ibrahim

There are facets of my recent life as an artist that are falling into place and if I didn't stop to look around, I could easily take it all for granted. It is only May and I've all ready been in 2 group shows, possibly another of new work in June. Photographically, I've met some really talented large format photographers which coincides with my own interest in shooting with my 4x5 and 8x10. I'm pretty much set up to learn from a master printer to learn how to print Platinum Palladium photographs. I've started dialogues with not only photographers, but other artists to discuss their works in progress and their mindset in creating. I've been visiting various galleries to view and study work I admire and have fed off of the creativity. More importantly, I've been out creating, taking chances and trying to move forward. The Creative Gods have not lined up for me in this way for as long as I can remember. There is lots of movement and I have to not only enjoy the ride, but feed it so I can keep going...

IFCC Do North Opening Night

Music | Evidence by Thelonious Monk

The opening of the Do North Exhibition last night was fabulous! Lots of supporters and friends to celebrate the art work coming out of the North and NorthEast sides of Portland. The eyes were treated to a feast of various mediums of all shapes and sizes. As one of the artists there, I was happy to see the viewers were appreciating what beheld them. It wasn't just a social event to get out, but had lots of meaning to a lot of the viewers.

Another artist who I noticed constantly talking about her work to the various interested parties was my daughter. Yesterday evening opened up my eyes to another side of her that I never saw before. I saw eloquence, thoughtfulness, humour all wrapped up in Dara that I knew was there, but only for me. Now, those characteristics have blossomed out to the public, to the masses and she was doing so with such ease. OMG!!!

To view more photos from last night, click on the photo below...

-- --