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The Hidden World of the Nearby

Landscape, French Horn, Sax, Mums and Then Sum.

A story of a few lives.

I am not quite sure over the fourty plus years exactly what hapened, when or why. Actually, I am not even sure why I started doing landscapes.

I remember making a print from a 35mm slide of one of my mother’s flowers and her turning her nose up at it, and suddenly 35mm was no longer the go to camera. I had played with a 4 x 5 press camera as a kid, but htat was only play. I had taken a couple of pictures with artsy in mind, but approached it like I had no right to try to take such pictures. But I played around through college (MIT for 7 years isn’t really college), then my mentor, Amar Bose invited me to join his company of four people after I ephipinized that 7 years of the Institute was enough and 2 or 3 or more years doing a doc dissertation....It was an ephiphiny. So look around the country for 30 days and then a truly exciting 7 years as an engineer at Bose, then a divorce, and Dad had passed away 3 years earlier at 59, and Jerry invited me into marketing, which turned into taking over the ad department (ad mgr had his hand in the till) and working with photographers with view cameras. And discovering Eliot Porter and the brilliance of dye transfer prints and somewhere along the way something happened and one day I said to my friend Stan: lets go to New York, I want to buy a view camera. Bought a lens. Bought the cheapest view camera around from Calumat. A student‘s camera because when I added up all that I wanted: bellows draw, swings, tilts, weight, simplicity, wide lens capability at $175. Turned out I was right. Also, indestructable. Put it in its (modified) case on a pack frame and I was off. To where?

Mount Mansfield, Utah, Alaska, Swanzee, Mass. Round and round. Then Eliot Porter’s Redbud Tree in Bottomland from Intimate Landscapes stuck in my head and after 7 years of occasional successes I found my redbud. On the Mass Pike in Weston, Masschusettes. Under my nose. That’s it below. And Stephen Gersh, a hugely luckly meeting, and a lesson: good/no good/good/good/no good... I see what your doing and got a clue of what Porter had done to me.

Twenty eight years, 20,000 sheets of film and I had whatever landscapes I would ever have. Didn’t like to travel and 2 1/2 cars was enough. What next? A lab, a gallery, Kodak kills dye transfer we Mike and I try to reinvent printing mostly by finding the problems with other people’s experiments. Two years of trying to make Ultrastable pigments stick. Then EverColor. Tried them out. Maybe. Then out of the blue their chairman arrives and invites me to become CEO of EverColor. Vanity strikes. O.K. They are in Sacramento and I might cure my new fear of flying. Sure.

EverColor making the most beautiful, most lightfast prints EVER. (I think it is still true. But a few technical glitches and this MIT engineer should have recognized that the problem was terminal. No. Move the whole thing to Worcester, Mass. with the fantasy that I could fix it.

Just as I realized after a couple of years of trying, Agfa kills the process, just like Kodak had killed dye transfer and the end of evercolor, the gallery.

Except that my friends at Bose had asked me to make pictures of musical instruments for their stores except I didn’ have a studio, but just upstairs, Doug Saglio did and I paid him to shoot french horns, saxophones, violins, claranet and we made a few prints and closed the shop. But Mark Doyle, our super tech took it over and it because Autumn Color, but I went home. Depressed.

Then two things going on. I am playing with Saglio’s images since I thought the gorgeous curves of the french horn might work in other ways than just a portrate. They did.


Two Frames of Mums on a Wall of Mums I
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