So I continue to work on my forthcoming book with Oxford University Press, Alternative Processes in Photography: Technique, History, and Creative Practice (the title has changed a couple of times).
Since around September or October, I’ve repeatedly visited the George Eastman House in Rochester, pulling pictures from their archives to use as illustrations in my book.
The Eastman House is home to the world’s largest public collection of photographs, and needless to say it’s been a great experience combing through these archives in search of photographs.
Just a few days ago, I finally submitted a list of 30 pictures to the museum for reproduction rights. It’s remarkably satisfying to see this project coming together, to see these pictures becoming something of my own.
If you scroll back, you can see a list of some of the contemporary contributors I’ve successfully recruited for inclusion in this book. Now, to add to that list, all these great photographers pulled from the Eastman House archives – above, William Henry Fox Talbot, Anna Atkins, Abelardo Morell, and Eugene Atget.
In finding all these photographs for my text, somehow I feel they become part of my own history too.
These pictures are all apart of a biography for which I want to own, a statement about my own life.
I know that might seem silly to some, but I see so much of myself – both a literal and aspirational history – in all of these photographs.
The historical illustrations, at least with just a few exceptions, are coming from the Eastman House. Above, Frank Gohlke, Charles Negre, Peter Henry Emerson, and Edward Weston. For more recent examples, I’ve been contacting friends and colleagues from over the years
On a personal or visual level, some of these pictures mean more to me than others, but all are meaningful in reflecting a history I love.
The book is due for release in February 2017, and my goal is to submit a completed draft of the manuscript by the summer.
There are moments and movements in the history of photography that mean more to me than others, and certainly photographers who mean more to me than others, and yet still there is so much that I love about all photography, from daguerreotypes to Instagram.
Part of my goal as a teacher and photographer – and as author of this book – is to keep an multiplicitious approach to photography alive and a part of the contemporary discussion. Photography, it’s approaches and possibilities, are so much bigger than most of us know.
These pictures are all part of the request I just submitted (just pulled from google image searches), along with many others (above Alvin Langdon Coburn, Edward Steichen, Betty Hahn, Clarence White, and Edward Weston) . And all these pictures represent something of my own journey and life as a photographer.
This last picture is from one of my first, serious bodies of work, all photographed in Commerce City, Colorado. These train tracks run through a former military weapons arsenal, though since converted to an animal refuge and sanctuary.