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"Outback Portfolio Tutorial #3"

featuring a portfolio by Jim Collum
Part 1: The Portfolio
The full portfolio photos can be found here.

You can comment on the "Outback Portfolio Tutorial" here

Part 2: Artists Statement

I've never been comfortable with putting anything down in words, let alone what my photography means… I'm a visual person, and pretty much believe that the images say what they need to say (if they say anything at all).

I became interested in Photography about 20 years ago after picking up a book of prints by Brett Weston. I was amazed at what he was doing with film and paper. I found an old 35mm camera, bought the three books by Adams (The Camera, The Negative and The Print), and started experimenting. About a month later, I found a used 4x5 View camera for sale, and found a love for the large film.

After playing with Black and White for a couple of years, I came across a book by Eliot Porter, and began to look at things in color. At the same time, I began to learn the craft of printing as well, settling on Cibachrome for color.

After a hiatus of about 8 years from photography, I discovered digital… initially scanning and printing on an Epson 3000. I found I could print transparencies that I was never able to resolve properly on Cibachrome. I had the bug again. Since then I have moved to an Epson 9000 for printing, using Xtreme Gamut Glossy paper (same substrate as Cibachrome) and Lincoln Wide Spectrum inks (more archival than Cibachrome, with the same look). I picked up a Nikon D1x in July, and haven't put it down since (literally.. just ask my family and coworkers). With the D1x, I have found the tonal quality of large format in a 35mm package.

I live in Santa Cruz, California, and love the light and textures found in the coastal landscapes in this area.

For information about Ben Lifson, the tutorial, and how to submit a portfolio
Part 3: Ben Lifson's initial Comment

I'm impressed by these pictures but don't understand, yet, exactly why. Pictures like these don't usually work—pictures, that is, that walk such a fine line between, on the one hand, the illusion of a literal description of what was in front of the camera, in the real world, at the time of exposrue, and, on the other hand, abstraction. There are very few successful ones in all of photography. One finds them mostly in 20th century American photography before, say 1960-70. The good ones are mostly by highly trained, sophisticated professionals and artists who have paid a lot of attention to modern painting and scupture.

So Jim Collum’s pictures here have a presence I'm not all that much used to seeing, especially outside of galleries, especially on the Internet. Still, they seem like beginnings, a first staking out of the territory, an exploration of subject matter and/or form. I also feel somewhat at sea, looking at them only on the monitor, because with pictures like this, success depends more on the prints than it does with other kinds of picture. For example, I think the size of the prints is especially important here. I suspect these pictures should be printed quite large. But lacking an artist’s statement from Jim Collum, I don’t know how much he’s already thought about these things, or about many other things connected with this kind of picture, but it looks as though he has--as though some of the directions indicated by these pictures are highly conscious choices on his part.

So on the one hand I don’t want--even in this brief statement, which Collum may or may not read before the tutorial--I don't want to start talking about what could be only my concerns, not his. Also, I don't want to waste his time talking about things he already knows, or waste the Outback readers’ time talking about things that Collum and I will probably talk about during the tutorial. For I suspect that our conversation will be more like a mutual exploration of the images than a "tutorial" in the ordinary sense. I have mostly questions, and I’m looking forward to exploring Jim’s answers with him, and to seeing where the conversation leads us.

For information about Ben Lifson, the tutorial, and how to submit a portfolio
Part 4: Dialog between the Artist and Ben Lifson
4a: 1st Chat tutorial session between Ben and Jim

You can comment on the "Outback Portfolio Tutorial" here

For information about Ben Lifson, the tutorial, and how to submit a portfolio


For information about Ben Lifson, the tutorial, and how to submit a portfolio


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