I am back in the darkroom these days, developing film and beginning to formulate a working model for a new project, one that I might engage in for many years to come, weaving it through my waking days and dreaming nights. Beekeeping, I have found, is a fascinating subject. The interaction between the Keeper and the hives, the product resulting, the need to allow the bees to keep the honey in order to survive and the recent onslaught of Colony Collapse Disorder are all intertwined for me. Documenting this would be a fascinating adventure, one that I could pursue throughout the world. I can use digital and film, anything, really. I am hooked. And its all because of Brueghel and his “The Beekeepers” lithograph. With this inspiration comes the possibilities for a photo shoot this Wednesday in Harlemville with a Beekeeper and some of his handmade, sacredly-geometric hives. I am ready to go. The weather is supposed to be nice, with lots of sun which means dynamic light.
I have purchased a Crown Grafix 4×5, my first foray into large format work. The film is not a problem to find and the development is easy. I find that it is wonderful to develop the film in complete darkness although I have a small tank that can immerse 6 sheets at once. I’ll be doing that this afternoon. As of now I can only make contact prints, but I hope to be able to scan the negatives sometime and also find a 4×5 enlarger to do some printing. This, by the way, is similar to the camera used by an inspiration of mine, the photographer and writer Wright Morris. I think he used a different model of Graphlex, but I feel like I am on a well-worn and honorable path.
OK. It’s a sunny day and I have errands to run; the PO, the bank, the gym and then home until I skee-daddle out to meet friends for coffee.
More to come…