In preparation for my residency in Portland, Oregon this coming fall, I have finally begun to photograph a project that has been on my mind for a while. Instead of waiting to begin the project until I was actually in Portland, I figured I would get a head start on it.
For me, a head start seems to be an important thing, mostly because my projects are so fully thought out that I need some example images in order to explain what the project will look like. This is especially important when working with minors, basically trying to convince parents to sign off on their kids being in my images. I can explain all the images that I will want, but without some sort of visuals from the current project, it seems to be hard for them to grasp.
So, since I still had my intern with me, and since she wanted to see some shooting, and since I haven’t taken a serious photograph in the last 8 months (and I’m getting kind of antsy again—which is a good thing), I decided to take a trip back to Minnesota to make some images.
Making images back in MN is somewhat easier for me because I already have people I have worked with in the past, so finding models is less of a headache than usual. Also, with my new digital form of working, it is immensely easier with two people, one to work with the laptop (which is tethered to the camera) and me on the camera. So, while it takes a small team, the image quality is fantastic.
The new digital setup has also allowed me to make work (when I am actually in a making stage) so much more quickly. While in MN on this trip alone, I was able to shoot 9 images, 6 of which I will end up keeping. In the past, shooting with film, capturing this many images in any given week would have been impossible for me, mostly because of the cost of buying and processing the film.
Back in Chicago, I let my intern stitch the images together (they’re shot in quadrants) and I applied the finishing touches. It feels good to be back to making things again, and it makes me all the more excited to begin working out in Portland. The countdown has begun.