Tag Archives: denver

Denver, CO | Family + Senior Combination Session | Three Sisters

Below are a bunch a pictures from my recent Family Portrait / Senior Portrait combination session. I really like the variety of images we were able to get in just a short time. McWilliams Park in Denver provided a bunch of different settings and backgrounds, and I kept switching between Camera/Lens/Film(digital) combinations to keep the look changing.

As you look over the pictures below, the soft, pastel looking color images were shot on color film, the warmer more contrasty color images were shot on digital, and the black and white images were shot on black and white film. Film processing and scanning was done by the amazing Richard Photo Lab in Hollywood.

I am really happy with how all of these images turned out, but as usual, my favorites are the images shot on black and white film. The combination of Fuji Neopan 400 and the Nikon 85mm f1.8 lens constantly blows me away.

You can click on any of the images to see them larger. Enjoy…

Tech Info:

B&W Film
Nikon F100
Nikon 85mm f1.8
Legacy Pro 400 (AKA Fuji Neopan 400)
Richard Photo Lab

Color Film
Nikon N90s
Nikon 50mm f1.4
Fuji Pro 400H
Richard Photo Lab

Digital
Nikon D70s
Nikon 35mm f2
Adobe Camera Raw

Posted in Portrait, Seniors | Also tagged , , , , , , , , , Leave a comment

Denver, CO | Family Portraits | Sneak Peek – Sisters

Today, I have a sneak peek from a recent portrait shoot. These three young ladies are sisters, the two in the vertical shots are twins. The images are from a sort-of combination family/senior (in college) portrait session. The twins just graduated from college, and their younger sister is a student at CSU. Their mom wanted to take some time to document how they look at this transitional moment in their lives, finishing up school, but before careers and families. I think this is a great idea, and it was especially fun for me because I have know these girls since they were little.

We dedcided to try for an outside shoot – always my preference, but sometimes tricky in January. We lucked out and got a relatively warm day with just slight overcast and enough snow on the ground to give some of the pictures a sense of seasonality. Pretty much ideal conditions for an outdoor shoot in Colorado during the winter.

I really liked how these digital captures turned out, so I wanted to get them up on the blog while eagerly awaiting my film scans from the extraordinary Richard Photo Lab. I will put up a more comprehensive post once I have all the film scans and digital files prepped and ready.

You can click on any of the images to see them larger. Enjoy…

Tech Info:
Natural Light
Nikon D70s
Nikon 35mm f2
Adobe Camera Raw
B&W conversion using Adobe Photoshop/Channel Mixer

Posted in Portrait, Seniors | Also tagged , , , , , , Leave a comment

Denver, CO | Follow Up | Quiznos Pro Challenge Press Conference

With today’s announcement of the route and host cities for next year’s Quiznos Pro Challenge, I thought it would be a good time to show a few more pictures from the announcement press conference back in August. My previous pictures from the event are over here.

I went downtown to hear the announcement and see if there would be anything interesting to photograph. To my surprise, thousands of cyclists showed up on their bikes to see the press conference and have a group ride with Lance Armstrong following the event. Needless to say, there was plenty to photograph.

I was mostly looking for interesting details and quirky situations, rather than traditional “news” or press conference images. The fact that I was shooting with a fixed 40mm lens certainly eliminated the possibility of getting close-ups of the speakers, but I do like the context provided by the crowd in the shots of Governor Ritter and Lance Armstrong speaking.

You can click on any of the images to see them larger and read the captions. Enjoy…

Tech Info:
Canonet QL17 GIII
Canon 40mm f1.7 lens (fixed)
Legacy Pro 400 (AKA – Fuji Neopan 400)
Ilford Ilfotec DD-X Developer (7min @ 20C)

Camera Scan
Sigma SD9
50mm f2.8 Macro
Photosolve Xtend-a-Slide

Posted in Personal Work | Also tagged , , , , , , , , Leave a comment

Denver, CO | Byers-Evans House | Wet Plate Collodion Demo

Last weekend I went to a wet plate collodion demonstration at the Byers-Evans House Gallery here in Denver, CO. Leading the demo were Mark Sink & Kristen Hatgi. Mark is a well know photographer living in Denver, who currently has a show hanging at the Byers-Evans House (highly recommended). He and Kristen have been collaborating on fine art wet plate projects for a few years and they share their expertise through demonstrations and workshops.

Wet plate collodion is an antique photographic process that was in popular use at the time of the Civil War. If you have ever seen an old Tin Type, you have seen a wet-plate image. The process is pretty complicated and involves:

  • Setting up a portable darkroom
  • Coating a sheet of glass or tin (they now use aluminum with a black enamel coating) in gun cotton
  • Adding silver halides to the plate (in the dark)
  • Putting the plate in a “film” holder
  • Composing the portrait on a large format camera
  • Locking the camera down and inserting the “film” holder
  • Exposing the wet plate for a few seconds (the sitter has to remain motionless)
  • Processing the wet plate in the darkroom
  • Waiting for the plate to dry
  • Varnishing the plate to protect it

Why would anyone go to all this trouble? The number one reason is that the resulting images are beautiful, with great tonal range, swirly out of focus backgrounds, and interesting imperfections from the totally hand crafted process. Another aspect that makes these images interesting for fine artists, is that the resulting images are one-of-a-kind originals. They can sell this original image like a painting, it is totally unique. Of course it is possible to make a scan and create reproductions, but there is only one original.

It was really exciting to see the process unfold. I don’t know that it is something I would start shooting, it uses some potentially lethal chemicals – 100% pure grain alcohol, gun-cotton, ether, and cyanide – but it certainly inspired me to think about ways to improve and expand my own portrait work.

This week, I pulled my old 4X5 camera out of storage and started brainstorming ways to incorporate it into my arsenal. That led to thinking about the pinhole photography work that I did back in college. Now I have at least two new projects to explore. That is something I love about photography, there are always new things to learn and new paths to follow. I will put this new work up on the blog as I experiment and test.

Below, I have added a few documentary images from the demonstration. If you scroll all the way to the bottom, there are four cellphone snaps of the tin-types that Mark and Kristen created during the demo.

You can click on any of the images to see them larger and view captions that explain what is going on. Enjoy…

Tech Info:
Canon Canonet QL17 GIII
Fixed 40mm f1.7
Legacy Pro 400 (AKA Fuji Neopan 400)
Ilford Ilfotec DD-X Developer (7min @ 20C)

Camera Scans
Sigma SD9
Sigma 50mm f2.8 Macro
Photosolve Xtend-a-Slide


Tech Info:
Cell Phone snaps with my LG Dare
A lot of Photoshop work to make them presentable

Posted in Personal Work | Also tagged , , , , , , , Leave a comment

Denver, CO | Details | Quiznos Pro Challenge Press Conference

As you may have heard, Lance Armstrong was in Denver on August 4th to announce the Quiznos Pro Challenge with Colorado Governor Bill Ritter. I though it would be a great opportunity to shoot some interesting documentary photographs. As it turns out, I was right. There were thousands of cyclists at the capitol for the announcement. They probably set the world record for most lycra at a press conference. This made for great juxtapositions between the “freewheeling” cyclists and the staid atmosphere of the capitol steps. I have more pictures from the event, but will save them for another post.

Click on any of the pictures to see them larger. Enjoy…

I shot these using an old Canonet QL17 GIII rangefinder camera on Fuji Neopan 400 (Legacy Pro 400) film. This was also the first roll of film that I have processed by hand in about ten years. Luckily, it is kind of like riding a bike, once you’ve done it a few thousand times, you never forget how.

The “scans” were made using a Sigma SD9 camera and a light table. I am still working out the kinks in the camera scan workflow. These images  turned out pretty well but some of the other frames had focus problems. Looks like I will have to pick up some hardware specifically for making camera scans. Still, this is much faster and easier than using a dedicated film scanner. So I think it will be worth the effort.

Tech Info:
Canonet QL17 GIII
Canon 40mm f1.7 lens (fixed)
Legacy Pro 400 (AKA – Fuji Neopan 400)
Ilford Ilfotec DD-X Developer
Camera Scan – Sigma SD9 + 50mm f2.8 Macro + Light Table

Posted in Personal Work | Also tagged , , , , , , , Leave a comment

Bright Shining Faces, or Maybe Not – Documentary Portraits

I was going through my archive looking for images to add to this site, and came across this one…

I love it!

It’s certainly not traditional, but it is real. The hat, the bib overalls, the messy face, the expression, even the out of focus cup in the foreground – I had totally forgotten about this day, until I saw this picture. Then it all came rushing back. That is the power of a documentary portrait, it doesn’t just capture what a person looks like, it captures who they were at that moment in time. Beautiful – no matter what is smeared all over their face.

Info for any photographers out there:
Sigma SD9
Sigma 50mm f2.8 Macro
Manual exposure, 1/180 sec, f/2.8, ISO 100, Compensation: +1/2
Check out the detail (Click on the picture to see it larger). When this camera gets it right it is really right. Unfortunately, when it gets it wrong, it is really wrong. There is no safe middle ground.

Posted in Portrait | Also tagged , , , , , Leave a comment