Alternative Printing

On one of my many trips to England I visited the home of Henry Fox Talbot at Lacock Abbey. Some consider him the ‘father of photography’. He invented a way to make a paper negative, in 1835,  that could be reproduced. You don’t hear as much about him as you do Daguerre and Niepce. Talbot’s mistake might have been that he didn’t introduce his idea to the world until 1839 or apply for a patent as early as he should have. he thought no one else would beat him.

I visited Lacock Abbey with my Hasselblad 500CM film camera. I walked around the abbey and made images in the same places that Talbot did. I then came home and learned how to make salt paper prints in the same way Talbot did. An improvement over his process is that I could use a UV light box for the contact print instead of putting the paper out into the sun for days.  That was his invention: salt could fix the negative. Here are two prints I made:


the entrance to the Abbey grounds


the barn door

I also learned to make platinum prints.


the famous window. It was from inside this window that he made his most famous first negative.


inside Lacock Abbey

This one is not from lack Abbey but of the Clifton bridge in Bristol. This was an engineering marvel for its time. Engineered by Brunel. There is a new Brunel museum in Bristol and really worth a visit. I was just there in May of this year.


Clifton bridge

I kind of dropped the ball on my alternative printing, but now with my UV light box made, chemicals and paper bought, and several contact frames I am ready to go. After the holidays I plan to concentrate on this process as I make a book about a series I have been working on over the past 5 years. Stay tuned.

(FYI: I learned alternative printing from master printer and teacher, Ray Bidegain, in Portland, Oregon. Check him out on the web for more information) Thanks for reading



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4×5 pinhole

I own three 4×5 pinhole cameras, but my favorite is still the Ilford Titan 4×5. I like it for its ruggedness, being made of hard plastic that does well in the wet Pacific Northwest where I live. I am surprised how sharp it is. As this year comes to a fast and furious end I plan to do much more 4×5 in 2019, both pinhole and with my Wista camera. Now that I am able to develop my black and white images at home there is nothing stopping me from using my film stash.

It may be a bit early for News Years Resolutions but I have set a goal to finally finish my gas station book of platinum prints. I thought if I put this out there then I will be held accountable to finish my many projects.

So here from the archives are a few of my favorite long exposures made with the Titan camera.

These were taken in Donald, Oregon:


no place to sit



These were taken at Trillium Lake near Mt Hood:



This is the bridge along the old highway above Donner Lake, California:


Donner Pass

The heads are part of an art installation at my local transit center:


rolling heads

This image was made at Newspace Center for Photography, now closed and missed:


me, Donna Stewart and Moni Smith: all pinhole photographers

(all these images were made on Ilford film and I developed at home using Ilfosol developer and a MOD 54 tank)


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Summer’s End

Summer is coming to an end and the summer of 2018 will go down in Portland as one of the hottest and driest in decades. After I arrived home on June 7th from spending 8 weeks in England, there was seldom a day of rain at home. For that matter I only had about 4 days of rain in England, mostly in Norwich. I think we maybe had two days of very very light rain at home. The sun was bright and it was hot, too hot for me. So my photography was not what I would normally like, but I did spend some days wandering the streets of downtown Portland with my Leica MP camera learning to do ‘zone’ focusing. I still don’t have it down pat but I am getting there.

I’m still not used to the grain that is achieved with a 35 mm camera since I usually use my medium format Hasselblad, but I have to admit that when I am on the street and want to be slightly invisible and  take a quick shot then my Leica is my ‘go-to’ camera of choice.

Here are a few of the photos I made just walking around downtown taking a photo of whatever got my attention. These were all shot using 35mm Kodak Portra 160 film. I performed little to no post processing except to remove some dust and adjusting the contrast a bit. I don’t like spending much time in front of the computer.

Farmers market

Wednesdays are for the Farmers Market in the park blocks by the art museum


delicious carrots


coffee time


seldom see these Army green colored mail boxes any more


seeing red


our streets are almost deserted during the day


lunch time in Director’s Park

leica mp146


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Bakewell, England, in pinhole

After a week in the wonderful city of Norwich for Worldwide Pinhole Photography Day, I moved on to the town of Bakewell, famous for its Bakewell pudding. My traveling companion and I wanted to immerse ourselves in Chatsworth, the beautiful and huge home in the Peak District and this was a perfect location for our home base.

Bakewell is a small town of only about 4,000 people, but it seems even smaller. From here there is decent bus service to get you all over the Peak District. We had a wonderful old Tudor home that we rented for the week, situated behind the gates of Kings Court. It was perfect. We had two floors, two bedroom and two bathrooms with a wonderful kitchen and living space. At night the owner of Tosca Cafe would lock the main gates so we had the courtyard to ourselves. I really want to go back there again.

Here are just a few pinhole images I made while in Bakewell, all taken with a 6×6 Reality So Subtle pinhole camera and Kodak Portra 400 film. I did use various ND filters on my camera to slow the exposures even further as the week was full of bright sunny skies.


the normally very busy crossing in the center of Bakewell

Kings Court

Our house was behind these gates. The owner of Tosca’s cafe made the best homemade soup from veggies in his own garden. he was the nicest man.


Enjoying our lunch from Tosca’s. Our house is straight ahead in this photo. At night we had this whole place to ourselves.


I’m always attracted to churches. This one was up the hill from our house and we visited it almost daily.


selfie, trying it out for size. I love that it looks like there are two of us….or at least another set of hands

grave stones

It is very common to find that head stones have been used for other purposes other than to mark a grave. It does make it difficult sometimes if you are looking for a relative.


tulips at the church


Bakewell lies along the River Wye.


near the old mill

Just sharing a few more pinhole images from Chatsworth. here.  Chatsworth is a magnificent manor home in the rolling hills of Derbyshire countryside. It has been in the Cavendish family since 1549. Kathleen Kennedy, sister of our past president JFK, married a Cavendish but sadly he was killed in WWII and she died a few years later in a plane crash. She is buried in the local cemetery. Two other famous residents were Bess of Hardwick, who also built Hardwick Hall, and the other is one of the former famous Mitford sisters. She recently died and is also buried in the same cemetery as Kathleen. Two of the Mitford sisters were very taken with Hitler and were even entertained by him. oops.

Chatsworth_pinhole997 (1)

the maze at Chatsworth


the gravity fed fountain


lunch in one of the farmyard buildings


pinhole selfie with my Widelux film camera and a Sony a6500.

(these were all long exposures. Often I used a 2, 4 or 6 ND filter to make exposures longer to combat the bright skies. Most images were made with either Kodak Ektar 100 or Kodak Portra 400 with a Reality So Subtle 6×6 pinhole camera, scanned on an Epson V850. Little or no post processing). 



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WPPD 2018

I’m finally getting around to scanning my pinhole images from Worldwide Pinole Photography Day in Norwich, England. About 35 of us from the US, Europe and Great Britain met up for several days of making pinhole images, eating and drinking in Norwich. We had three days of horrible cold and wet weather, but it didn’t stop us. After the weekend the weather improved and I had another 6 weeks of gorgeous non-English weather.

You can visit the Worldwide Pinhole photography web site to find photos from all over the world taken on this particular weekend which is the last weekend of April every year.  It seems we now have a core group that is trying to meet up every year alternating between the US and Europe. In 2019 the group is meeting up in Boston. It’s a chance for us to meet like photographers, spend some time discussing photography and then making lots of photos with various pinhole cameras. Because of the adverse weather I decided to use my Reality So Subtle camera because it is made of plastic and would not be damaged by the rain.

Here are some of the photos I made that weekend:

Royal Arcade

we met up at the Royal Arcade. exposure: 26 seconds


We walked along the river and watched students learn to row in the rain. exposure: 10 seconds


There are more than 32 churches located within the walls of Norwich. exposure: 13 seconds


At so many churches we find the grave stones have been moved. It makes it difficult to find resting places of ancestors. exposure: 13 seconds

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In a church garden. exposure: 16 seconds

Norwich_pinhole938 (1)

Norwich market in the rain. exposure: 8 seconds

I will be sharing many more pinhole images from my England trip. These were all taken with a Reality So Subtle 6×6 camera and Kodak Portra 400 film.

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In 1962, President John F Kennedy opened the World’s Fair in Seattle. Over 10 million people attended during the few months it was open. The World’s Fairs were to showcase art, industry and innovation from countries all over the world. The only one I ever went to was the one in Spokane in 1974. I wish the world still had them.

Two bits of trivia: The Seattle Fair was the only one to return a profit and the Spokane Fair was the first to be environmentally themed.

On a recent weekend when I was in Seattle I decided to go check out the area where the fair was located. The Space Needle is probably the most iconic landmark in Seattle and when you fly into the city it is easy to spot. It recently underwent renovations. A ride to the top will set you back almost $30, but what a view.





The science center is also still there.



A new addition is the Chihuly Glass garden. I didn’t bother going in this time as I only brought black and white film and it needs to be appreciated in color. Luckily the Seattle Center is close to Glazer’s Camera, my usual stop, so I will go the next time I’m in Seattle and have a roll or two of color film with me.


And the monorail, which is a cheap and quick way to get to downtown Seattle. It’s then just a short walk to Pikes Market.




(all photos were taken with my Leica Mp and Kodak TriX 400 film)

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Our 4th

I feel lucky to live in a ‘Leave it to Beaver’ neighborhood in the Pacific NW. One hour from the mountains and one hour from the beach, but on the 4th of July each year I like to stay home to take part in the neighborhood celebration.

We start off the day with a parade. Kids decorate bikes. Adults decorate themselves. Others line the streets to watch.







This is followed by a barbecue.



It then moves on to games in the park for the kids.



It’s a day full of activities and a chance for people to come out and meet their neighbors.

(all photos were taken with a Leica MP 35mm camera and Kodak Portra 400 film. I did no editing after the scan)

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