Printing for others

It’s sort of odd, but every once in a while someone asks me to print something I hadn’t really considered. It started with Sean Stennett asking me to print a shot of Michigan coastline I previously had regarded as dull. I did and it turned out alright and eventually hung in The Red Eye for a couple of months. Later Steven Magstadt asked if I had some prints of homeless people or any images that highlighted need for an exhibit he was doing. I scoured my negatives and came up with two shots I had never printed before. Then up at Photostock 2011 this year Mat Marrash asked if I had anymore grain elevator images and immediately I thought of one I had taken with a Koni Omega back when I lived in Maryland over 6 years ago. So last night I printed that Md neg.

Printing something by request is a bit of an odd experience. I find it harder to get into the process because it’s not something I’m presently really into. On the other hand I must have thought it looked neat because I did take a picture of it. It can also be a sort of time traveling experience. In the case of the shots highlighting need some of the negatives were nearing 10yrs old. I had taken them before I had a darkroom or taught myself printing. I took them *BEFORE* digital cameras were common place. It’s reassuring to know that if I ever get the printing blahs and don’t know what to fire up in the enlarger, that I have this tremendous back catalog of b-side negatives to flip through, rediscover, and enjoy. So here’s the print I worked up last night of the grain elevator in Ellicott City, Md:
Ellicott City grain elevator