December 30, 2015

Late Christmas

Music | Look for Me (I'll Be around) by Neko Case

I love getting unexpected Christmas gifts after Christmas. To say it was unexpected is kind of unfair as I got to work with Françoise Weeks again. I just kind of expect great things whenever we work together. On this day, I put together a crew with an assistant and make up artist for the shoot. Also, I have a great studio to work in with lots of room to spread out. It feels like we are stepping up to the next level.

As per usual, we came up with a simple concept and moved forward. Because of a new project, I'd have to kill you if I told you what it was. Suffice to say, we have another absolute amazing image. It will be a while before these new images will be released. However, because we put so much into each shoot, we decided to do a secondary shoot where we could show something.

Having great support and lots of room to work, though I wanted to do even more, we got so much into each of the photos without feeling overly over done. The room to be able to breath cannot be taken lightly. When things ramp up in the brain, either by inspiration or some technical issue, it is nice to be able to physically step back and get a different view to work things out.

After working on getting our HERO shot, I let the make up artist go. Our only initial concept for the secondary shoot was that we were going to use mud and cheese cloth. It is an idea I worked with before, but thought this was another opportunity to push the idea further.

Having great talent to work with makes creating so fulfilling. The energy goes thru the roof when collaboration happens. Not often do you get lost in the moment. Time goes away... I'm all ready looking forward to work with these folks again.

November 24, 2015

Volvo 245

Music | Avalon by Roxy Music

Just picked up my very first station wagon, a 1983 Volvo 245, white with turbo exhaust, Virgo Wheels, sport suspension, 4 speed with electronic over drive. It needs a few things- drivers seat, sounds, tinted windows to keep out of site my gear and a roof rack... odometer reads 300,000+, but still pulls strong.

I am really excited about the possibilities of setting up the dark box in the rear and shooting Wet Plate Collodion outdoors. I'll see in the next few months if it is truly road worthy for extended trips. The thought of driving down to Monterey or even cross country would be fantastic! Loading and unloading great is gonna be a breeze. I even thought of camping and just sleeping in the back. In any case, Here is to Adventure!

November 20, 2015

Freedom Fighters, Day 2

Music | Song for My Father by Horace Silver

Day 2 was as the first day. More amazing people to photograph for the Freedom Fighter series. It was nice to see some familiar faces who are apart of this gifted group of people. There were a total of 39 portraits I shot in the last 2 day. I've gotten succinct in having to photograph so many people in a very short amount of time. I am with each subject for at most 3 minutes where I take maybe 4 to 6 exposures. That includes introduction by the way.

November 19, 2015

2015 Freedom Fighters, Part 1

Music | A Love Supreme by John Coltrane

The Writing Center at Roosevelt High School puts on a program where every Freshman student is given the opportunity to interview modern day Freedom Fighters, socially conscious individuals who has fought for the rights of people living here in Portland, Oregon. This is the 4th year I have been given the opportunity to photograph these heroes. A few from day 1 and 20 portraits...

November 06, 2015


Music | Latin Quarter by Johnny Griffin

September 20, 2015

Memory Lane at Midnight

Music | A Love Supreme by John Coltrane

1990, I took a trip to Japan. Fantastic memorable trip visiting family and being a tourist. But one of the things I also hold dear to that time, shortly after I got back was the jet lag. I'd be up wide awake at 4 a.m. I felt bad that I wasn't really getting anything done as I would be asleep during the day. So one night, around 11 p.m., I went into the darkroom and started developing film and making prints. I'd be in there til 5 to 6 a.m. for the next week. I was so amazingly productive, no distractions... Music and photography...

Tonite, I decided to process some 8x10 film I have had sitting since last Sunday. I've been too busy doing other things, I just had no time during the week. I was brought back to those evenings, 25 years ago as I pulled the film out of the fix and into the wash. I'm winding down quickly, after hanging the film to dry, with a great sense of accomplishment and to be able to see what I got on film...

September 18, 2015


Music | Where is My Mind by Maxence Cyrin

I am doing a reorganization and slight move of the office. I created a nice cozy little room in the basement to serve as a work area and computer room. The rest of the basement is in shambles as I move things around. I'm dreading getting to the point where I run out of room and things will have to be given away or sent to the garbage...

In making this move, I find miscellaneous boxes, boxes of stuff, boxes of paper work, but most fun, boxes of prints. This image has always been one of my favorites, since the very moment I made a print. In fact, this could be the very print!

I've been taught well by my mentors, those I have met and have known, those that have inspired me through books and exhibitions. I love when I find a 20+ year old image that I could still put in my portfolio today. It makes me feel like I've had a sound foundation from my beginnings. I've kept my vision and just enjoyed the journey.

I think I drove a Pontiac Sunbird when I shot this. I was able to park less than a 100 yards from this spot and maybe put in a few quarters for the parking meter. I'm certain things have changed! I shot with Canon F-1N's and had a slew of fantastic lenses. Gabriella, I've remembered through out all these years. Some people just leave a lasting impression...

Scan of a Silver Gelatine Print

reprise: Upon having this print by my side for the past hour now, I've become mesmerized by it presence. I keep going back to the shoulder line, the wrinkles in the dress as the wind must have been blowing. I have just enough facial detail to bring back Gabriella's amazingly beautiful face in full force. I love how I can come back...

August 06, 2015

Love Consummated...

Music | These Foolish Things by Johnny Griffin

We were introduced when I was in my mid 20's, so confident, but so unknowing of what the world had to offer. I had just started hitting the gallery scene and art museums, where on occasion, we would serendipitously run into each other. On other occasions, I knew she would be in town, so I made forthright plans to be with her.

She had no time for the young and ignorant. I knew this... I loved her for her appearance, for her reputation... but she was so much more than that.

As I started to begin to appreciate who she was and why she had the attention of men that mattered. It turned out that others I have revered as mentors also took on a love for her as well. I felt honored to be in good company...

Years would go by and she always eluded me and frankly, she was way out of my league.. My thought was, just to be near her was enough. Her reputation was always held in high regard. Anyone in the know, knew she wasn't for just anyone. I knew this and always kept myself at a distance...

I've seen her in the arms of the Masters of their art. Vivacious, brilliant, luminescent... She submitted to them to leave herself totally exposed to who she was. And the beauty she expressed was astounding, like no other...

With decades gone by, comes wisdom. I knew if I were going to be with her, I would have to cull my resources, confidence and let go of the fear. Today was my first time with her. Face to face and supposed equal footing. She relented this time and gave me a hint of her brilliance. I am working on her to call me Master, but I know and she knows she has the upper hand and I have many miles to travel before I earn that respect. We will spend intimate time with each other as I get to know her nuances. I am in for the duration...

August 05, 2015

Platinum Palladium | No Words...

Music | Blue Diamond by World Saxophone Quartet

My first image printed Platinum Palladium

August 03, 2015

No Negatives in this World...

Music | La Davina by Maria Callas

Last Saturday, early morning and early evening, I got the opportunity to work with the 4x5 Chamonix shooting both film and a new, then discontinued and soon to be revived product from Ilford / Harmon that is a paper that renders positive images direct. You shoot it like chromes, process it like it is a black and white print.

Paul Cunningham
offered up some sheets for us to shoot while I was able to get 2 fantastic models, Fayren and Juliana. Françoise Weeks also got in on the collaboration by creating a head piece for the evening shoot.

The weather here has been extremely hot. Besides catching nice light, the 7 a.m. call time was perfect. The temperature lingered in the mid 60's and was very comfortable. The textured wall was a nice contrast to the very soft light we were working thru. Both Paul and I were able to shoot thru a good number of both of the Direct Positive Paper and film sheets while I also shot a few frames of digital.

Though there was another 10 hours to go for the evening shoot, I didn't have the opportunity to process any of the media. Paul did and got some of the paper prints processed, which left me chomping at the bit to get to mine...

The evening shoot was a challenge for me. I couldn't find the angles, it was a bit windy and I felt lost. I shoot digital when I am stuck to hopefully open a door. I got some great images, but didn't feed me for the 4x5. I ended up doing a 180 and went to another direction. Turns out to be a keeper that I am happy with...

Fayren with Françoise Weeks' Orchid Head Piece


July 27, 2015

Positive in a Negative World...

Music | Fidelity by Regina Spektor

8x10 Processed Film...

Music | La Wally by Maria Callas

I shot 6 sheets of film last Sunday and have been processing 2 at a time, which is what my tank allows. My thought process was to process the film over time and see where I stood regarding consistency. I'm feeling pretty good after the 2nd the 3rd go arounds, which I didn't feel the first time. I'm locking it down and feeling good about being able to get great negs for printing. Scanning too...

July 23, 2015

Moving to Another Dimension...

Music | To Build a Home by The Cinematic Orchestra

The move to shoot 8x10 has been exciting, especially since I just finished my first shoot of meaning with it. I am not confident to the point of not backing up the shoot with digital, but merely pulling the beast out behind the initial digital shoot for colour for Françoise was a little stressful. I found an amazing location, which was a ground floor parking garage in thee trendy neighborhood of Portland. Fortunetely, our shoot started early enough on a Sunday morning, we didn't have too much of the public to deal with.

After seeing the initial results of what we shot digitally, I was excited to see what the film would look like. Not so much as to compare, but what look the big format would portray. Initially, the digital 100mm wide open compares well to the 8x10 360mm. But there is a subttleness I can't define yet, but discernable. I do know in spirit, I have so much satisfaction with the image I shot on film. I am sure a lot of it has to do with the fact I am shooting on film and that I am brought back to the pre digital days where experience and knowledge were king. There is significant emotional value in returning to that era. Does that make the photography even better. I think it does!

8x10 Ilford Delta

Digital File Converted to Black and White

July 21, 2015

Saving Memories...

Music | Start Shootin' by Little People

I finished up a one month + visit with my daughter, who I don't get to be with often enough. Living over 2800 miles away, makes things very difficult. I make the best of my visits as I can.

One of the important things I've always understood about photographs is how they can stabilize memories. The visual reference of a time, place and people within the photograph is a deposit in the memory bank where merely looking at that image brings back so many feelings of the moment, you don't ever want to lose them.

I don't try and go out to create these moments, but I know with every visit with my daughter, they will happen naturally and hopefully be captured in an image. With my own memory, I know my brain has allowed remembrances difficult. Having the idea that age plays a roll in that doesn't help me deal with this issue. I can only do what I know how and try to hold onto my past, my memories as with the moment, all we have otherwise is our past...

June 01, 2015


Music | Into Dust by Mazzy Star

I'm working my way to shooting out in the elements, but circumstance dictates that I eventually work my way out. Heavy overcast clouds and chance of rain made me decide not to shoot outside today and step back into the studio and to work with the windows and daylight. I didn't work with the single window to left or right for the Rembrandt look I almost exclusively use. I have a favorite wall that is a corner with a window along the wall and a smaller window on the opposite wall. It makes no logical sense to shoot this way, but I am finding I love the shapes it creates on a face.

I am finding I love the thought of moving even further and further away from the idea of perfection. I guess my love for Wet Plate Collodion was an early indicator and now in a more subtle direction, how I am thinking of light. It maybe isn't even the idea of perfection, but a more non traditional way of the use of light. I've often thought about how a painter sees light in so much of a different way a photographer does. Now into more than 30 years of photography on a series basis, I have only cracked the shell. It is all about being aware of subtlety. The art has been lost to see beyond the surface, to notice the delicacy, faintness underlying characteristic of what might be called a soul.

I will admit that this image for me didn't take the long road of study to notice how fantastic the light is upon the subject. But the tenuous ideas I have in my head regarding this subject certainly was the basis to my revelation.

What is life but shadows and light? Light creates shadows and shadows are created by our form.

May 13, 2015


Music | Come Here Boy by Imogen Heap

Real grain.
Not noise.
How beautiful it is...
The wonders of nature.

Chemical reaction
Chemical structure

an image

The Beginning...

Music | Gold by Chet Faker

So begins the movement to shoot, process and print large format film. I have been lucky enough to have been benefactored close to 250 sheets of 4x5 and 100 sheets of 8x10. It has been awhile since I have processed sheet film, so I am very excited to start doing so. Of course I also have to shoot and even more excited about that.

I have a solo show scheduled, but not for over 17 months. I am hoping to have my technique of shooting, processing and the absolute new to me printing via Platinum Palladium refined enough to have a showing. Lots to eff up, lots to learn. The time frame will make things interesting!

April 28, 2015

ElizaBeth Rohloff

Music | When I Fall in Love by Bill Evans

Part of a series for ElizaBeth Rohloff. The theme is about breaking out of the binds that hold you down.

I love having clients that step out of the norm and take a direction that is a bit off center.

April 25, 2015

Françoise Weeks

Music | Check the Rhime by A Tribe Called Quest

Elizabethan Collar | Profile | Wings

Elizabethan Collar

April 18, 2015

Creative Collaboration

Music | Protection by Massive Attack

I get to work with great, creative people. I think our energies mesh and wonderful things just happen. During one of my meetings with ElizaBeth Rohloff Millinery for an upcoming shoot, I saw a few of her display hats that were more couture. Whenever I go there, I want them to shoot with. This time, she lent me 2. I had Phanthia come over for another shoot, but ended up using her to model the hats.

This was the 2nd time I've worked with Phanthia. She said she had never modeled in front of the camera before, but liked the experience of our first shoot. We worked well together and I thought she would be great for a few of my jobs. She'll be working again for another client on Monday.

I love it when things just work!

April 04, 2015

Cyanotype II

Music | Piano Sonata No. 14 In C Minor by Ludwig Van Beethoven

I made more Cyanotypes, but this time with 4x5 negs. I also bleached and toned with black tea for the 1st time. I've all ready made plenty of mistakes, worst of all making a print while the paper was a bit damp, which transferred spots on my neg that I don't think will come up. Ruined... I have since purchased a hair dryer to ensure my coated paper is totally dry when making more prints.

I know I need to take a class and get my technique sorted out, but I am learning a good amount on my own. I will need to figure out things like neg density in order to get the best print. As it stands, I am not sure how to make a good print great. I know in time I will get there. I am happy with my lack luster efforts and my better ones. It is all about the process of learning...

Amanda, 4x5 Cyanotype bleached and toned with black tea...

April 03, 2015


Music |  Unlike Me by Kate Havnevic

Quite excited about venturing into new grounds... With the addition of a field 8x10 camera, I can start shooting the format outside. And with big negs, I can make contact prints. I am starting for the 2nd time to print cyanotype. My first go around was contingent on using the sun as my light source. This time, I have a indoor light source where I can get consistent exposures anytime of the day, night, summer winter...

A few weeks ago, I was able to test my 8x10 Burke and James with Shayna Rae. I only did 2 exposures, but used the neg to make my first test strip. 4 min, 30 sec exposure, which makes me extremely happy!

I think I'm off to a fantastic start, but always respecting the process. I know the photo Gods can strike at any moment!

March 20, 2015

A post on Facebook...

Music | Polaris by Zero 7

I am apparently banned from posting on my own profile for a 24 hour period...

Forgive my reactionary post hear... Yes, I know the rules... blah blah blah... Never mind constitutional rights of free speech... Heaven forbid, I posted a photo of a breast. Not 2, just 1. And yes, it had rope involved. I'm not sure how many people I had to offend, maybe 1 or maybe 69, but the image was removed and I was banned for a short period. I get that their are sensitive people here and get their panties or tidy whites in a bunch and their is no way of changing a closed mind... but really. Simple as FUCK solution. Give everyone the opportunity to have their profiles set as, Not Safe For Work or I Have Been Known to Be Offensive and let people decide to turn off your profile to theirs and be done with this BULLSHIT. We are managing to be profiled here on Facebook for advertising and who knows what else, let us FUCKING express ourselves...

March 16, 2015


Music | Here's That Rainy Day by Bill Evans

Been almost a month since the opening of Haute Couture Botanique. It is interesting how the time has gone by progressing up to the opening and how I moved on after the opening. I gave myself a week to come down, to have the idea of having nothing in my head to think about and let the nature of things have it time with me. I think I needed that. As the energy of preparing, then being in the midst of the show, then coming down waned, new ideas and thoughts just naturally started to come in to my head. I know I've been riding this wave of staying creative for a long time. I don't question or doubt it. I'm just happy.

So the opening of Haute Couture Botanique was just a wonderful time. The people, energy and honestly, the genuine sincerity was over whelming. Everything from the hanging of the images, the pre shoot of the models and art, the quick ramp up of people suddenly arriving all at once, to the giveaways, the meeting of friends and new friends couldn't have gone any better. Those moments are quick and fleeting, but memorable. Both Françoise and I were overwhelmed by the support we received in those 3 short hours. Thank you!

So in the last 10 days, I bought not 1, not 2, but 3 cameras. I can't believe the luck I had! Just simply crazy... One was a Craigs List find - an 8x10 Burke and James and the other 2 from a flea market/garage sale at New Space Photo. There, I got a beautiful Yashica Mat LM and a Graflex RB Series D 4x5. The shutter will need work, but for the price, even if it doesn't work, I will make a great profit from the lense that came with it. I also sold my Sinar 4x5 and a 90mm Schneider Super Angulon.

Earlier today, I finally got back to shooting more Wet Plate Collodion. After months and months of issues and not being able to shoot any, today I broke thru with 3. So happy to get back into the mix! And... just this evening, I processed my first batch of 8x10 negative film I shot with the Burke and James. I'm feeling great that I can process the film right here, instead of having to send it out!

Lastly, Françoise and I are working with a fashion designer of amazing talent. I saw her work online and was immediately taken by this woman's work. We had our first meeting yesterday and planted seeds to see in what direction we will collaborate. We are all of us excited to be working with each other.

What a great start to 2015!!!

February 13, 2015


Music | Tell Me Somethin' Good by Rufus featuring Chaka Khan

For the past several days, I've been working on printing for 2 projects happening this month. I just finished printing and framing 16 portraits for the Freedom Fighters series opening on the 25th and just started printing for the Haute Couture Botanique show opening the 20th.

Sitting at a desk, looking at a monitor and watching prints come out of the ink jet printer isn't anything like optically and chemically creating something from nothing, but I have to say I am feeling quite accomplished rolling off beautiful print after print.

Amanda with Floral Mask">

January 23, 2015

Always Something...

Music | Love is a Dangerous Necessity by Charles Mingus

There are still over 3 weeks for the Haute Couture Botanique exhibition opening. For me, it is a bit strange to have started the process and still have so much time before the event. Though I have only framed 2 pieces for the show, of which I probably have at least 12 more to go, I've designed and produced a postcard that is circulating, created header images for the FaceBook events page, located art work of which 2 major pieces were lost as far as I was concerned, and trying to keep the buzz going without over doing announcements and such. Today, I just finished producing and printing 5 posters for the venue to post...

It is getting to the point where I can concentrate on the art work. The plates need varnishing and framing. The other pieces have to be selected, sized and framed. I want to keep up the effort and energy, especially since I have so much time to work on this.

Feels good to be ahead of the ballgame!

13 x 19 posters for the venue...

Posters will be given away during the opening
-- --