Sunday, August 17, 2008

Favorite pictures

By the time I was finished with research, writing and fact checking all the book texts with 29 other contributors I had amassed both text and images well in excess of what would fit in the original plan for 175 pages. The publisher graciously expanded the page count, but this decision was at least in part so to be able to run the pictures BIG!

So my editors and I embarked on the painful task of cutting A LOT of great pictures. As a former photo editor I'm used to making these kinds of decisions, but editing other contributors ' pictures out of this book really took a lot of fortitude and soul searching. At the end of the day I found this was a rare opportunity to dig deep for the best way to illustrate each element of the text.Some of the images that had to be cut were given a new life as section headers or front matter, but there was not enough space to run all my favorites. This is one of my all time favorite images by Lance Keimig and I really imagined it welcoming readers at the beginning of the book.

                                                  © Lance Keimig, The Arrival

Dramatic backlighting to a stand of trees in San Francisco's Presidio National Park takes on an otherworldly glow due to fog that blanketed the air with moisture. Keimig carefully composed his image to block the direct light coming into the lens from a metal halide street lamp. A low camera angle hides the road in the middle ground while glowing taillights from an unexpected passing car add an element of mystery to the scene.Camera: Hasselblad 500 CM, Lens: 80 mm Planar, Aperture: f/8Film: Kodak Portra 160 NC, Exposure time: 5 minutes.As I write this, Lance is leading a photography workshop out in Mono Lake, which is probably one of the most idyllic places for night photography there is. I attended the night photography conference he organized there in 2006, and besides shooting, I was able to do a lot of interviewing for the book.I look forward to sharing more of the nonpublished contributor selections in upcoming posts, as well as new images by the wider network of photographers who I hope will visit and will be entertained and informed by this content!