Dirceu Maues: feito poeira ao vento

September 8th, 2008

Brazilian photographer Dirceu Maues has made the most astounding pinhole film, …feito poeira ao vento… (…like dust in the wind…) showing Ver-O-Peso Market in 360 degrees, from the early hours of the morning, to the close of the market day. The three and a half minute film is made from 991 pictures, taken with 38 pinhole matchbox cameras.

A fantastic piece of work!

Lithuanian Pinhole Photography

September 7th, 2008

stuba by Kestutis Opulskis

Stuba by Kęstutis Opulskis

A gallery of work by 33 lithuanian pinhole photographers

I’m particularly taken by Erika Dūdaitė’s game of chess, Valdemaras Manomaitis‘s images from travelling round Europe in a cargo truck, Ornela Ramašauskaitė’s cigarettes, Jurgita Remeikytė’s For the memory and…actually, there’s masses of good stuff over there. You choose.

Francesco Capponi: birdhouses, pine nuts, and chess

August 27th, 2008

Francesco Capponi's Ritratto ideale di Duchamp e Man Ray

Ritratto ideale di Duchamp e Man Ray by Francesco Capponi

Francesco Capponi makes glorious project-specific pinhole cameras, where the camera and the photos from them are part of the same work. How can you not love a pinhole birdhouse with the bird’s eye view, looking out through the round door, pinhole origami where the camera is a folded box, which becomes the photograph’s frame when finished, a camera built into an olive tree, pinhole chess, and, probably the smallest pinhole camera I’ve seen, the pinhole pinenut?

Mark Tweedie

August 18th, 2008

mark tweedie two frogs in ice

Two Frogs in Ice by Mark Tweedie

I am completely in love with some of Mark Tweedie’s pinhole work, particularly the Still Life in Ice series he made last winter, freezing things into blocks of ice. I keep going back to look at them, particularly this one of two mummified frogs.

I’ve had a couple of interesting conversations with Mark about the mixed feelings one has about revealing the nitty gritty of setting up and making images, and whether it can add or subtract from the viewer’s enjoyment in the results, or how it changes the way someone looks, but the behind the scenes details about making his series Dream of Flight is worth reading, for the thinking behind the series as well as the “ahh… so that’s how” lightbulb moments. I can’t find the series on his own gallery site, but they are on Mark’s gallery on f295.org, or tucked into his blog.

Nick Shuval-Sergeev

August 9th, 2008

Ann by Nick Shuval-Sergeev

I’ve known Nick Shuval-Sergeev‘s work for a while, but he has a new site with some amazing new work.

If Sudek had used a pinhole camera, perhaps he would have made photographs like Nick’s still lives, though Nick’s works are entirely his own, and hold so much domestic magic and memory in their simple compositions. And his portrait of Ann (above) is just gorgeous. (His older still life work is lovely, but the new images seem to be a whole new world.

Whatever you do, do not miss his zone plate films.

Bill Westheimer

August 6th, 2008

Bill Westheimer: Clematis 7

Clematis 7, by Bill Westheimer

Bill Westheimer, a photographer, photogrammer, and experimenter in light and pictures has a huge and glorious site featuring his work.

Any one of the projects alone is a hell of a body of work, but cumulatively it’s mindblowing. I keep going back to look at the wire balls photograms, ferns, the wald series made in the forest, and Manual.

The Manual Project, a series of 150 pictures of hands, made in pairs, with one hand as a photogram, and the other photographed using wet plate collodion, is an astonishing piece of work. There’s an animated selection of the images on youtube, but I enjoyed looking through them slowly, pair by pair.

Collaborating with Charles Schwartz, he’s been exploring the upper east side of New York, using a camera obscura, and recording the results. The work splits into four main parts:

Survey: The landscape and architecture of New York as seen from the Camera Obscura

Surveillance: The Camera Obscura captures the activities and lives of unsuspecting New Yorkers in the course of their daily lives revealing insights into the humanity of the city.

Surface: The two dimensional Camera Obscura images are projected onto objects and bodies contrasting the exterior scenes with unlikely yet related three dimensional shapes

Sun: Observations using the Camera Obscura of the sun and its effects on objects.

Visit, read, explore his work, admire, be inspired.

For those in the right part of the USA: Bill Westheimer’s Wald Pinhole photos are on display at Gallery 51 in Montclair NJ until the end of the summer. There’s more information about the show at Bill’s blog.

pinhole: science + art

August 3rd, 2008

Pinholery meets the future, with a group of international researchers creating the brightest, sharpest x-ray holograms of microscopic objects ever made, thousands of times more efficiently than previous x-ray-holographic methods.

photograms: botanics, bugs, and bodies

August 12th, 2007

Ether 8, by Stefanie Valentin

Photograms began with plants and flowers, with Anna Atkins making botanical cyanotypes in the 1840s, and it still seems like a rich vein to mine in contemporary work. I’ve already posted links to some artists who work with bugs, botanics, and bodygrams, but here’s more of the good stuff:


Dandelion, by David Dennison


Awakening, stages I-IV, by Glenn Friedel

and a few more bodies…

  • Glenn Friedel has been making large, bright, energetic body prints for over a decade
  • Mark Mangan has a set of six lively black and white body photograms on Flickr

and, yes, there’s even more to come. Tomorrow: science is beautiful.

chemigrams & luminograms, chemistry & light

August 11th, 2007

chemigram by Polly Marriner

Pierre Cordier, who invented the chemigram in 1958, would argue that it’s not photography at all, in that though it uses photographic materials, it’s painting with chemicals not painting with light. Most artists I can find working with chemigrams today, however, combine Cordier’s techniques with methods all their own, and clearly use light as part of their process. In my hunt for interesting work in this area, my preference is very much on the side of light–Sarachek and Marriner in particular–rather than in chemistry alone.

The small amounts of experimentation I’ve done have combined sunprinting photograms, and then adding chemigram work to the mix before fixing.

  • Norman Sarachek makes some of the loveliest chemigrams, mostly inspired by Chinese and Japanese ink painting. These really bring out the sense that chemigrams fall halfway between photography and painting.
  • Polli Marriner, from New Zealand, makes lush, landscape-ish chemigrams which look poured rather than painted. You can see a few her pieces elsewhere, at much larger sizes.
  • Four abstract chemigrams by Francoise André that seem to hit a halfway point between the two ends of chemigrams.
  • And Michael C. Howell‘s chemigrams feel much closer to painting than photography or printmaking. I wonder if this comes from the way he works more closely along the lines of Cordier’s methods of resists. (a few more here)
  • Cheryl van Hooven‘s light drawings should probably be classified as luminograms, but look closer to a certain type of chemigram.
  • Luke Kurtis has a couple of pieces on Flickr in the same vein–dragons and straw drippings–that look very much like chemigrams.
  • Some of Catherine Doran’s small set of delicate, pretty photograms also appear to be chemigrams.

Intruder, by Stefan Engstrom

and, purely on the side of light:

  • Stefan Engstrom makes beautiful, ethereal monochrome luminograms using refraction patterns, some of which are printed as cyanotypes.
  • Cally Iden makes abstract colour photograms with light painting, often layering them up in montages. And, bonus: she has some pinhole work on her site too.
  • Kristian Thacker has a lovely range of Polaroid photograms and luminograms on Flickr

and still more photograms to come tomorrow…

Luminograms, bodygrams, and photograms

August 10th, 2007

Seeds of Green Starlight, by Reciprocity (image copyright Alan Jaras)

More luminograms (nothing but light itself thrown onto film or paper), photograms (objects placed directly on the light-sensitive material), body grams (where the photogram is made of body), and other variations on this rich seam of cameraless photography:

  • Alan Jaras uses glass and plastics to throw caustics and light refractions directly onto 35mm film, creating an incredible range of wild, bright, delicate, complex patterns. See this series, too, where he’s using shaped and formed plastics to control the patterns in other ways. Beautiful.
  • Ute Lindner‘s cyanograms are shown on and between glass. I’m not entirely sure what these are, or how they are made, but they are lovely things.
  • Michel Flomen‘s Higher Ground is a series of large positive prints from photogram (maybe luminogram) negatives of fireflies.
  • Seze Devres has a big, beautiful site full of her abstract colour photogram work.
  • Natalie Ital uses multiple flash exposures on cibachome to make large, bright, colourful body photograms, layering images, objects, and poses together.
  • Henri Foucault makes simpler body photogram works in black and white.
  • Agnes Eperjesi made a series of body photograms of newborn babies.
  • Anne Ferran‘s work includes some ghostly, delicate photograms of nineteenth century women’s clothing
  • Erika Blumenfeld‘s Light Graphs–Winter Solstice luminogram project was a series of hundreds of polaroids, one exposed directly to the light for two seconds for each minute from just before sunrise to just after dark.

and, taking things even further, Kosmos is a rather mindblowing photogram film. Made in 2005, by David Finkelstein, this was made by growing crystals directly onto film, and then shining light through them. Five glorious minutes of hypnotic, vertigo-inducing beauty (though I’d recommend watching with the sound off).

It looks like this is turning into photogram week, so there’s still lots more cameraless photography to come…