Hello, anyone home?

Black Hill, The Badlands, SD

So here’s another of those “I can’t believe it’s been this long since I last posted” posts. The reality is that I was slightly taken in by the siren that is Facebook and this weblog became even more neglected than usual.

Facebook is great for keeping in touch with certain people, in my case some of those back in the UK, but it’s not enough to keep me happy. I don’t really care if anyone reads this weblog or not, the fact is that I enjoy writing it – when I get the time. I like that I can write posts bit by bit, save them as drafts and publish when ready. So I’m going to try and write and post regularly – or at the very least more often than I have recently.

So, what’s been happening? This summer I’ve been trying to get more of my work finished and printed, with emphasis on the word printed. I still have a lot of images that have got to the edited stage and then just accumulate in a virtual shoebox under the bed. Garry Winogrand reportedly died with over 2000 rolls of film still unprocessed and although I’m not that prolific, I still don’t want anything similar to that as my epitaph. “He died with over 2000 platinum internegatives unprinted…”

Having said all that, we went to the Badlands and the Black Hills at the end of June and although I’ve processed all the film and made scans, I still have a lot of editing to do.

I had a photogravure accepted in the Washington Printmakers Gallery National Small Works exhibition that opened recently. I submitted several pieces and (a little disappointingly) they chose one that had been shown before, Bird’s Nest. It would have been nice if another image had been chosen of course, but I’m really extremely happy because 192 artists entered 740 prints and the juror Jane Haslem eventually chose just 42.

On August the 18th I’m talking at the Minnesota Photo Center as part of the Tuesday Artists’ Talk series, following on from Beth who was just there. I’ll be talking about my photography and how I ended up working with the processes I use and perhaps talking a little about polymer photogravure as well. It won’t be at all technical but will cover how and why combining digital technology with the historical processes from the 1800s, as I am, can be so liberating for photographers today. There are also about 15 prints of ours up on the 3rd floor of the Minneapolis Photo Center – 4, I think, of Beth’s and 11 of mine.

Speaking of photogravure, I’m also writing an article for Ag on the process that will be published in the autumn. Photogravure, or more specifically polymer photogravure, is a process that I’ve been working with for ten years now and absolutely adore, but it was never this easy. When I started I knew of no photographers/printers that I could call or email and ask for help with any one of the myriad of problems I encountered. And at that time I was still using film, an enlarger and chemicals to make the film positives. Nowadays with digital it’s all a lot simpler but over the years I’ve formulated a workflow that is very consistent for my work. And the non-toxic aspect makes it very suitable for the classroom environment.