JOHN SEXTON PHOTOGRAPHY NEWSLETTER
- A NOTE FROM JOHN
- 10 PERCENT DISCOUNT SPECIAL FOR EMAIL LIST MEMBERS
AT VENTANA EDITIONS ONLINE STORE!
- JOHN SEXTON ORIGINAL PRINT AVAILABLE FOR PURCHASE ONLINE
- JOHN'S ORIGINAL PRINT PRICES INCREASE
- SILVER - AN INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON BLACK AND WHITE
- IMPORTANT TAX LEGISLATION BENEFITS ARTISTS
- TECH TIP - FREEZING BLACK AND WHITE PHOTOGRAPHIC PAPER
- SAD NEWS FROM AGFA - GOOD NEWS FROM FORTE
- SOME THOUGHTS ON PHOTOGRAPHY... AND OTHER TOPICS
Here is another one of my infrequent, and informal, email newsletters...
A special welcome to the many new subscribers to my newsletter. We have received many subscription requests since our last mailing a few months ago.
Wow, time flies!!! I hope that you and your family had a wonderful Thanksgiving. Anne and I had a relaxing and enjoyable day.
It is amazing to me that the holiday season is already drawing near. This year seems to have FLOWN by with amazing speed. It has been a busy, but rewarding year making new negatives, processing film, and making LOTS of prints from unpublished negatives (some old, many new) for my upcoming retrospective book, which will be published in the fall of 2006.
I will keep you updated on the progress of the book. A number of people have requested to be informed of special "early offerings" on the book, as we have done on my previous three books. If you would like to be included on this list, simply email firstname.lastname@example.org with your request.
Anne and I had the wonderful opportunity to join Ruth Bernhard for the celebration of her 100th birthday on October 14th. It was a fabulous occasion, and Ruth had a great time. She did not leave her centennial party until after midnight. She is truly an amazing and inspiring person, and photographer. I feel blessed to have studied with her in 1974, and to have taught many workshops with her over the years. I have included a couple of quotations from Ruth that have inspired me over the years at the conclusion of this newsletter.
I am most honored to have been invited as a presenter for the upcoming "Silver" International Photography Conference in March. Additional information about this gathering is included in this newsletter. It will be a fantastic opportunity for those who truly love the medium of traditional silver halide photography to join together in establishing an efficient communication network and learn from one another, while discussing the magic of silver imaging.
Wishing you the best this Holiday season,
10 PERCENT DISCOUNT COUPON FOR EMAIL NEWSLETTER READERS
ON ALL ORDERS AT THE VENTANA EDITIONS ONLINE STORE
The readers of this newsletter can save 10% on all purchases at the Ventana Editions online store between now and December 31st. This includes all of my books and posters, along with a recently printed Collector's Edition print (see below). In addition, we have books by Neil Chapman, Mark Citret, Tillman Crane, Richard Garrod, Henry Gilpin, Ray McSavaney, and Huntington Witherill, including Tillman Crane's recently published jewel of a book, "Touchstones." This book is a limited edition offering, so order soon if you would like to own an autographed copy.
The Ventana Editions online store can be found at:
To receive the special 10% discount, simply enter the code "•••••" (without quotation marks) into the 'COUPON CODE' section of the secure web order form. Please remember to enter the coupon code during the checkout procedure to receive your special discount. This special 10% discount is good for orders placed through December 15. Remember that UPS ground shipping (to the 48 continental United States) is only $5.00 per order - no matter how many items you purchase.
If you prefer, you may also place an order by calling Ventana Editions toll free at 888-390-4545 or 831-659-3130, Monday through Thursday from 9:30 am to 5:00 pm, Pacific Time.
JOHN SEXTON ORIGINAL PRINT AVAILABLE FOR PURCHASE ONLINE
From time to time, I make special print offerings available at reduced prices. This new Collectors Edition offering of "Aspen Forest, Dusk, near Aspen, Colorado," the Frontispiece in "Listen to the Trees," is now available for order online. This landscape image is one of my favorite, and most popular, images. The on-screen reproduction is not able to convey all of the subtle nuances of the original print.
To learn more about this print, or to order, follow this link:
This print is available for a limited time at the very special price of $600. My 11x14" prints normally retail in galleries for $900, so the savings over the retail price is significant. This print is personally printed by me (as are all my prints), processed to current archival standards, signed, mounted, and overmatted on 16x20" 100% rag museum board. The actual print size is approximately 10x13". Prints will be delivered in approximately four to eight weeks from the date of order via UPS, carefully packaged, and fully insured.
Furthermore, if you take advantage of the Ventana Editions special coupon offer mentioned above for 10% off of online orders, your net price for each Collectors Edition print ordered will be $540.00 through December 15, plus $5.00 for insured UPS ground shipping. Be sure to enter the discount code "•••••" during the checkout process to receive your discount. Those of you who have ordered my prints in the past know we use "bullet-proof" packaging to help ensure your print arrives in perfect condition.
If you prefer to order over the phone, or if you have any questions, call 831-659-3130 from 9:30 am to 5:00 pm, Monday through Thursday to place an order. In addition, you can contact us at: email@example.com
JOHN'S ORIGINAL PRINT PRICES INCREASE
On October 15, John's new retail print prices increased as follows:
|11x14 or smaller
The above prices are for open edition prints, which is the case with most of John's images. Limited Editions, when published, will be a separate price structure determined by the image.
In addition, a few of John's most popular, and challenging, images will now have special pricing as listed below.
Special image pricing:
Corn Lily, Eastern Sierra Nevada
Plate 22 Quiet Light
Rock Shoreline, Dusk
Plate 26 Quiet Light
Rock Shoreline, Dusk
Plate 26 Quiet Light
Rice Field and Pine Forest
Plate 7 Quiet Light
Forest in Snow
Plate 33 Quiet Light
SILVER - AN INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE
ON BLACK AND WHITE PHOTOGRAPHY
March 3-5, 2006 Art Center College of Design - Pasadena, CA
Ilford Photo and Calumet Photographic are jointly sponsoring "Silver," an international forum for devotees of traditional black-and-white photography, including a conference, a photographic competition, and a commemorative book, along with informal discussions and related events this coming March in Pasadena, California
The conference will be an opportunity for dedicated black-and-white photographers and printmakers to listen, learn, network, and be part of an important photographic community event.
I am pleased, and honored, to be one of the presenters, along with other featured speakers, including Keith Carter, George DeWolfe, Jeff Dunas, Les McLean, Alan Ross, and Mary Virginia Swanson.
This landmark gathering will be geared towards photographers and laboratories with a passion for traditional silver halide imaging, and will provide the opportunity for delegates to hear a line-up of dedicated photographers share their expertise and their experiences. The number of attendees will be limited to 350.
Additional details, tentative schedule, and registration information can be found at:
URGE YOUR REPRESENTATIVE TO SUPPORT THE ARTIST DEDUCTION BILL
On November 18, the Senate approved a measure that would allow artists to take a tax deduction for the fair market value of works donated to charitable organizations. If accepted by the House, it will take effect on January 1, 2006, and would expire on December 31, 2007, unless renewed by Congress.
Under current law, artists may take a tax deduction only for the cost of materials, such as paper, chemicals, and mat board. It is important to note that under the new provision, only gifts that are retained by the recipient for mission-related use would generate a full deduction. Gifts that are sold or auctioned, even in order to raise funds that are put to charitable use, would not qualify.
The artist deduction bill is part of a larger piece of legislation that includes many provisions of interest to the arts and other charity groups. The original sponsors of the artist bill, Senators. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and Robert Bennett (R-UT) led a successful effort to insert it in the larger bill, helped by a number of others including Senators. Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Pete Domenici (R-NM), and Edward Kennedy (D-MA).
Americans for the Arts thanks the Senators who supported the artist provision and urges the House to adopt it as well. To help ensure that this important provision becomes law, please take a moment to contact your Representative and urge him or her to support the artist deduction legislation. It will only take two minutes if you follow the link below:
TECH TIP: FREEZING BLACK AND WHITE PHOTOGRAPHIC PAPER
When Kodak announced the discontinuation of all black and white papers last June it certainly changed our photographic lives here - at least for a while. The discontinuation of my primary printing paper, Kodak Polymax Fine Art, necessitated that we invest in a supply to allow me to transition to other papers in the future. In addition, I wanted to be able to complete existing print orders - as well as the reproduction prints and Limited Edition prints for my upcoming book - on Polymax paper.
About a month ago, the announcement that Agfa Photo in Germany would be closing and discontinuing Agfa Multicontrast Classic (a paper I like for its slightly warmer image tone) further necessitated that we "stockpile" photographic paper.
I tried to gather as much information about preserving photographic papers by freezing as possible. I have included below a compilation of the information I was able to gather with the help of knowledgeable people from photographic manufacturers.
In the "good old days" (which Ansel used to say were frequently the product of a failing memory!) it was possible to store most photographic papers for years at room temperature, and sometimes for decades when properly frozen. Today most photographic paper emulsions are made differently. The majority of papers available currently have small amounts of developer incorporated in their emulsion to enhance performance characteristics. This means that extending the life of a paper for a long, long time is unlikely - at any temperature. In actuality there is very little "hard data" about extending particular emulsions beyond their anticipated "expiration date." Most manufacturers feel that you should be able to gain a significant amount of time beyond the anticipated date when a paper emulsion might be compromised.
One thing I did learn in my research was, once a box of paper is removed from frozen storage, it is likely best to keep it at room temperature (as cool and dry as possible), rather than refreezing it. For this reason, we have tried to store our paper in individual large ZipLoc bags, and we plan to extract the paper and then use that particular box of paper over a relatively short period of time.
I wish I could say that the information below is all based on fact, but in actuality it's nothing more than an educated guess (kind of like the accelerated aging data on today's digital print output). Hopefully, this information will be of value to you if you're trying to preserve some of your favorite silver halide emulsions for a useful life beyond the norm.
Unused Black and White paper can be expected to gradually change in sensitometric characteristics from the time it is manufactured until it reaches expiration date -- and beyond. Storage at temperatures below room temperature can slow down these gradual changes, but not eliminate them. The following guidelines will help ensure that cold storage of paper offers the greatest benefit to sensitometric stability.
1. Paper stored at 55F will show significantly less change than paper stored at room temperature (68-72F).
2. Paper stored at freezer temperatures (about 0F) will show significantly less change than paper stored at 55F.
3. Papers should be protected by a moisture barrier (foil or sealed plastic wrap) while in cold storage and while warming up to room temperature (to avoid condensation onto cold paper). Paper in 25 sheet packages can be expected to take about 2 hours to warm up to room temperature, while paper in 100 sheet packages may take closer to 24 hours, or longer depending on the sheet size.
4. Although it is likely that paper can be successfully stored at low temperatures for several years, documented experience is limited to about 1 year.
Suggested ideas to store full boxes of black and white paper in refrigerator or freezer:
- Overwrap unopened boxes of paper with heat seal foil or good quality sealable plastic bags (large size "zip lock" bags should be suitable). Check for an airtight seal to assure that moisture cannot enter the overwrap.
- Refrigerate or freeze the boxes of paper individually (rather than stacking multiple boxes in one overwrap).
- After an initial freezing period (24 hours), same size boxes can be stacked 4 or 5 boxes high on shelves. Avoid stacking more than this number of boxes on top of each other. The effect of the pressure of a high stack of boxes on the paper at the bottom of the stack is "unknown" but such storage should be considered as "risky."
- When the time comes to use the paper, allow plenty of time for the paper at the center of the package to reach room temperature before removing the moisture barrier. Separate the boxes of paper from each other while they warm up.
- A manual defrost freezer should provide better longevity enhancement than the more popular frost-free models. The frost-free units raise the temperature above freezing every day to melt off the residual frost. Manual freezers maintain a constant cold temperature.
- Keep your fingers crossed!!!
SAD NEWS FROM AGFA - GOOD NEWS FROM FORTE
As many readers of this newsletter will already be aware, Agfa Photo in Germany will be closing its doors permanently in a few weeks. This is sad news, not just for the users of Agfa photographic products, but also for photographers in general. It's hard to imagine a photographic world without Agfa. For the past few years I have been using Agfa Multicontrast Classic as a complement to my primary printing paper, Kodak Polymax Fine Art. The Agfa Multicontrast Classic paper was distinctly warmer in image tone than the Polymax, and the two papers together offered a wide range of choice of image tone.
It appears as if the division of Agfa Photo that manufactures photographic chemicals may be "resurrected," but that is uncertain at this time. It would certainly be welcome news if some "angel" were able to come in at the last minute and "save" Agfa.
On a happier note, Forte in Hungary is back in production. Under new ownership and management Forte has made a few production runs of paper, and things look promising for the future. OmegaSatter, the distributor of Forte photographic papers in the United States has already received a shipment of the paper, and more is on the way. Most photographic retailers should have a reasonably good stock of Forte Polygrade V and Forte Polywarmtone - both excellent papers - in the near future. Hopefully the "new" Forte will enjoy success, and continue to manufacture quality products well into the future.
SOME THOUGHTS ON PHOTOGRAPHY... AND OTHER TOPICS
"There are no unworthy subjects.
There are only unwilling photographers!"
- Ruth Bernhard
"Nothing can ever be ordinary, because everything is universal and connected."
- Ruth Bernhard
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Copyright © 2005 John Sexton. All rights reserved.