|I consider myself a traditional color photographer. I'm nearly tone-deaf and I have always imagined that the colors of the universe speak to me with the same emotional voice that most people hear in music. But, I became serious about photography in the American Southwest with black and white film inside my view camera and the history of traditional, black and white landscape photography inside me. I came to think of photography as a spiritual distillation of form and light in black and white. When I moved to the Pacific Northwest in 1989, I was overwhelmed by the apparent chaos of the environment and, with the exception of black and white beach vistas, I was at a loss to express what I felt. My education had been primarily in art and science with plans for a career in scientific illustration but frustrated, I abandoned art and got a Masters degree in things botanical. The day I graduated, I removed the ski equipment and tent from my darkroom and have never since doubted that life is a journey. The understanding of the natural world that I gathered to myself during five years at Oregon State University helped me sort through the chaos and rediscover my vision. And it was in color!|
In the film and wet darkroom tradition, I photograph and print in black and white and then hand-color the photographs with transparent dyes. A binocular microscope helps me discover the fine details of an image. The years of watercolor classes, my times as a commercial fine art printer and photo retouch artist, the alternative photographic processes classes at Arizona State University and my Oregon botany have come together as the expression of how I understand our world. I aim for neither faux color photography nor deliberate abstraction. In my best pieces, I hope that I have seen through the confusion and offered up reality as that spiritual distillation of form and light - in color. Each handcolored color positive takes about twenty hours to complete. I scan these at high resolution and print using an 8-color pigment ink process. I do as little possible digital fussing as necessary to create an accurate reproduction of the original handcolored photograph. There is no digital content manipulation. All materials are archival.
Early in 2001, I dedicated my work to volunteer appreciation and fundraising for environmental organizations.
In 2008, I began deeper research into the optics and chemistry of photographic processes. In so doing, I feel I began to complete a circle that, for me, must include both art and science.