Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Strange Alchemy

Location: Eastern State Penitentiary, Philadelphia
Print size: 13 x 19
File size: 18 x 26.75 @300 dpi
Camera: Fujica Gs645
Lens: Fuji/Nikon f3.8
Film: Tri-X 120 roll film @ISO 200
Develop: HC110 1:49, 6.5min at 68F
Scanner: Epson V500
Print: Epson 3880/Piezographic Inks/ Moab Lasal and Jon Cone #5 baryta paper.

I just couldn’t get the kind of print I envisioned. This photograph had its own ideas for me to discover and pulled me into its vortex.  The images that give me the most difficulties are the ones from which I learn the most, even if they are some ways unsatisfying. They unmask the “stuff” that makes up the work and how to get enough of it into to format. Like Alice in Wonderland, I feel like I’ve gone in one end of the looking glass and out the other.

Primarily, the pre-visualization was there in concept but not in the specifics; so I had to reinvent the image in the printmaking, something that is always a battle and probably something I will eventually completely eschew. It’s one thing to refine an image through the output; it’s another to make it out of whole cloth.  If I had to shoot this again, I would do it in a much different way, most likely making separate exposures for the wall and frame versus the reflection, and possibly even a separate exposure for the sky. Yes, this is not a composite, but a single-shot image! I did, however, move the notch in the stone battlement slightly to the left in order to get it closer to dead center.

I usually don’t give my photos titles, or they are strictly working ones, for my own internal reference, but somehow I can’t help but think this one should be called “Memorial to Misspent Youth.” 

1 comment:

  1. This is a lovely image. I like the image in the reflection. Kinda feels surreal like a Magritte. The level of craft in the printmaking (from what I see on my screen) is pretty awesome. I like the range of grays. Really subtle value structure.