Saturday, March 21, 2009
Black and White
We just returned from a retrospective at the Copper Shade Tree and Gallery at Round Top of photographs made by Alfred Black. (A benefit for the Round Top Library.) Most of them are black and white, made with a 70mm Hasselblad (sp)large format camera. This is the type of box camera where you get under a hood and compose the photograph on ground glass, upside down. The result in the hands of a competent photographer--and Black was much more than competent--is gorgeous. Blacks like silk, whites burning with intensity. I was searching the internet for examples of his work, but I couldn't find any. Black worked as a petroleum landman for much of his career, making photographs in the places where his work would take him. Seeing those beautiful, hand-developed pictures just makes me ache again for the skill, the patience, the equipment, necessary to render light so seductively.