August 24, 2014

In the beginning…

I guess as I initiate this new website, I’m supposed to write something here, although I’m not entirely sure that someone will want to read my ramblings. The blog posts may be infrequent, but for lack of a better beginning, I’ll start with this – what I do and why:

I shoot a variety of subjects with film cameras in multiple formats. Negatives are developed by hand and turned into silver gelatin prints in my traditional darkroom. I very much enjoy the tactile elements of analog photography. There is something very satisfying about being engaged in the entire process, from choosing the film stock through to pulling wet negatives from stainless steel developing reels and the final hand spotting of finished prints. I work predominantly in black and white film, as I find it distills my subjects down to light and line, shape and shadow.

I took up photography shortly after starting my postdoctoral fellowship. Apart from a short introductory darkroom course at a local arts center, I am self-taught in the medium. I moved to Philadelphia a few years ago to take my first faculty position at a nearby university.

As a cancer researcher by trade and training, photography provides an opportunity to express a different side of me. With my headphones on and a pint of beer, the darkroom becomes a hushed, warm, red-tinged sanctuary where physics and chemistry are coerced into aesthetics.

I am often drawn to quiet moods and small moments. I’m looking for a sliver of the soul – whether it’s mine or someone else’s is at present unclear.