For complicated reasons the 2021/2022 work from the Fulbright year in Cornwall was created with the latest and greatest digital technology. The images made over the past two decades—Still Lifes, Exteriors, and Interiors—were created on film, as described below.
The images in these portfolios were made using a mid-20th-century 4x5 or 8x10 bellows camera. The exposures usually took place in very dim light and consequently ranged in duration anywhere from 3 minutes to 3 hours and were made with anything from the kitchen stove light to the strong, full light of the winter moon. Because the film was allowed to "see" the scene for so long, elements of the scene that were lost to the human eye at the time of exposure are revealed in lavish detail after the negative was processed. This shooting in the gloaming is a very particular visual vocabulary, primarily because one never sees the scene at the time of shooting exactly as it will eventually appear on the film.
One might well ask why I work this way when I could shoot in daytime with a certainty of what's out there and for a fraction of the time it takes to render the same scene at night. The answer to that question is complicated. At first, I photographed at night because I, myself, wanted to be out in the world when it was at its most quiet, dark, and restful. Later, though, I stayed out all night because I loved the visual results. At night the elements of a scene have a completely different relationship with each other than they have in the daylight. The continual distraction of daytime details falls away, leaving only the bare bones of a composition. Additionally, stars and planets leave their trails across the sky. Colors shift. Light-reflective objects seem, instead, to emit their own light. In other words, the visual vocabulary changes utterly. And rather than loudly proclaiming its contents, as a daytime composition does, the nighttime version speaks sotto voce, only whispering its impression of what was there.