Saturday, December 10, 2011
Triathlete Portrait: I was looking through some of my older pictures when I came across this old 4 X 5 Polaroid I shot back in 2003. I can't remember what happened to this image but I thought from a creative view point is pretty interesting. It looks solarized and I have no idea how or why it happened.
Posted by Brad Armstrong at 6:38 AM
Thursday, December 8, 2011
Tuesday, December 6, 2011
Something a little different.
This is our dog Kona sitting at the front window. She’s a female boxer pit bull mix. We got her a couple of years ago when she was two and half years old from Boxer love rescue. In spite of her scary muscular appearance she’s a very sweet dog. Their is one problem though, she hates the UPS truck and anyone that comes to the front door. Everyday she sits and looks out the front window waiting for the UPS truck to come by. If the UPS truck is on my block it’s "game on" and she goes absolutely nuts.
Posted by Brad Armstrong at 10:15 PM
Tuesday, November 8, 2011
For these pictures the camera I used was a Polaroid 600SE which is a lot of fun to shoot. The lens is the 127mm f-4.7 which is the longer of the two lenses available for this camera. For me, this lens is a little long for landscape but conversely it's a great lens for portraits and general shooting. Here are a couple shots I took last week. I used a tripod and cable release with no filters.
To critique myself on these pictures I'm a little pissed at myself for putting in a lack luster effort. I concentrated much more on the digital images in the previous post. The top image the camera needs to tilted upward slightly to include the entire rock in the middle of the frame and in both images a stronger composition would have improved the end result.
Posted by Brad Armstrong at 12:14 PM
It’s certainly has been a while and for that I apologize. I’ve been extremely fortunate to be very busy with my commercial work this year which has put the fun photography on the back burner.
These pictures are of Oak Creek and the exposures range from 30 seconds to three minutes. The silky smooth water is an effect due to the long shutter speeds. A cable release is a good idea and a tripod is a necessity when shooting long exposures like this. I also used a neutral density filter to aid in the long exposures.
Posted by Brad Armstrong at 11:43 AM
Sunday, July 10, 2011
From Phoenix take a short drive to North Scottsdale and you'll find a piece of State Trust land that is being considered by the City of Scottsdale to become an extension of the McDowell Mountain Preserve. There are quite a few interesting rock formation through out the landscape as well as evidence of American Indians. This cone shaped rock is one of those interesting locations.
This photograph was made with an Arca Swiss 8 X 10 inch view camera using a 155mm Schneider lens. The film was Illford HP-5, tray processed in PMK Pyro.
Posted by Brad Armstrong at 5:55 PM
Tuesday, July 5, 2011
Check out the first Monsoon dust storm of the year. Phoenix, Arizona July 5, 2011 7:40pm.
A giant dust storm barrels into the Phoenix metro area. Visibility went from nice late afternoon light to absolutely darkness and zero visibility in a matter of two minutes. The weather folks reported the dust storm was 60 miles wide and 1500 to 3000 feet high.
Posted by Brad Armstrong at 11:42 PM
Thursday, June 16, 2011
Monday, June 13, 2011
Tilt on the Road Gallery Cottonwood, Arizona. Digital
Old town Cottonwood, Arizona. Digital
Junk yard near Clarkdale, AZ. Digital
Railroad tie's piled up near the Clarkdale, AZ. train station.
This picture was made with a medium format camera using
Kodak Portra 160VC film.
Love the film but I wish I had a model to shoot. I'm starting to dislike being alone all the time when shooting pictures like this.
Small junk yard Clarkdale, AZ. This picture was made with a
medium format camera using Kodak Portra 160VC film.
Historic Clarkdale, Arizona is a couple of miles from Cottonwood.
I've been so busy with my commercial work that I haven't had time for my personal photography. I apologize, but I have to run with the work when it comes. Thank you for sticking with me.
I went to Cottonwood, Arizona over the weekend to support my friends at the Tilt Gallery. http://www.tiltgallery.com/. Since I’m represented by the Tilt, I want to support them however I can. The owners opened a new gallery in Cottonwood, Arizona called Tilt on the Road. The owners wanted to try something new outside of Phoenix. They now have a beautiful space on Main Street in Old Town historic Cottonwood. It's really pretty cool since some of the local wineries have opened wine tasting rooms and fine dinning restaurants are now opened for business. Historic Cottonwood is going through a rebirth and becoming a hip little town.
I got to Cottonwood a little early around 3pm and drove around to find some interesting places. I remember when I went to Northern Arizona University we used to swim in the Verde River in this area. It's a very quit historic community where time sort of stands still. These are just a few of the locations that I found interesting in the short time I was there.
Posted by Brad Armstrong at 1:13 PM
Tuesday, May 17, 2011
Last week my friend and old neighbor Rodney called me up to tell me his daughter Catherine is graduating from high school. He asked me if I could shoot some pictures of her for her graduation invitations. Of course, I said yes. I used to live directly across the street from Rodney so we’ve had plenty of early morning coffee’s breaks together. He also is a contractor so he has bailed me out of plenty of household emergencies like burst pipes and so on. It was the least I could do for all he has done for me.
I think this is my favorite shot from the session. We started inside there home and did some formal portraits at the piano and then moved to the local park. Since the light was fleeting we really didn’t have a lot of time. We had to work pretty fast at this point.
What I like about this image is that she looks great ans she’s right on the edge of the fleeting sun light. I like how the grass and her arms are in shadow and her face is right on the edge of the light. For me, it made for a perfectly lit environmental portrait.
Posted by Brad Armstrong at 3:46 PM
Wednesday, May 4, 2011
This Sarah, a beautiful young lady and an aspiring ballerina who gave me the opportunity to photograph her a couple of weeks ago.
I'm a full-time commercial photographer here in Phoenix. As a commercial photographer I find myself taking a lot of portraits of business people. I really wanted to photograph a young person to add some diversity to my portfolio. I asked a friend of mine who is a dance teacher at a local high school if she new anyone that would be interested in a photo session with me. In return I traded for a signed model release and I provide a nice selection of prints. I got more then I could have wished for. This is one of our favorites.
Posted by Brad Armstrong at 3:16 PM
Friday, March 18, 2011
Last year I was selected for a second time to represent the Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust and take part in the photographic project called Picturing Maricopa 2010. I was honored and very fortunate to be selected in 2009 as well. To make the selections an outside selection committee was formed consisting of museum curators and a graphic designer. The final 15 professional photographers who were chosen live and work in the Phoenix Metro area. We were then paired with 15 nonprofit agencies who care for people of all needs.
The Trust publishes a quarterly magazine called notebook. I was excited to hear that my work is featured on the cover of this years magazine. It is a picture of Victor. Victor works in the paper shredding area of the TCH facility. He is a vivacious, and outwardly happy man who has serious needs both mental and physical.
Dawn Hawking Director of Development for The Centers of Habilitation (TCH) wrote the Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust and me when she received her magazine in the mail. This is what she wrote:
I wanted to let you know that I just took the notebook to Victor to show him, and you made his day by putting him on the cover. His coworkers were standing around and are just as excited as he is. It was a great moment to experience. Thank you again.
News like this, just makes my day. If I can help people or bring light onto an issue through my photography there is no greater compliment.
Posted by Brad Armstrong at 4:32 PM
Tuesday, March 15, 2011
Wednesday, January 19, 2011
Nothing really, to comment on here. I'll just leave it to the pictures to do the talking. This is Tumacacori National Park. The images were shot with a medium format camera on black and white film. The film was hand processed by me and then scanned.
Posted by Brad Armstrong at 5:08 PM
Saturday, January 8, 2011
This is a series of landscape photographs I made using Polaroid Type 55. As you may know Polaroid is no longer in production. What this means to use, is that this film has gone the way of the dinosaur. It's now extinct except for those wise men and women who have the financial resources to stock pile the film when it's discontinuance was announced. The challenge with stock piling this film is when it gets old the developer / stabilizer built into the individual film packs dry out. This renders the film useless. I have a box and a half that I would like to shoot but I'm a little pessimistic if it's still good.
Polaroid Type 55, was extremely popular with photographer's in just about ever application from architecture, portraiture, fine art, landscape, editorial and commercial work. It was an alternative creative medium for photographers. Polaroid Type 55, added one more tool to the photographers tool box that helped make their images stand out.
Locally, in Arizona, ASU Regent Professor and fine art photographer Mark Klett used Polaroid Type 55 as his signature look. Google his name and check out his work when you have time. His list of articles, exhibits and achievements are extensive. His early works using Polaroid Type 55 helped make him an icon in the fine art world.
If you're not familiar with the 4 X 5 inch film it has two properties. A positive and a negative. It produced a positive image on a piece of 4 X 5 inch Polaroid paper. We're all familiar with a Polaroid positive but this film also produced a negative. So, when you took the picture you had both, a positive and a negative. With diligence you soaked the negative in Sodium Sulfite and rinsed the developer off of the film. What you ended up with was a fine grain 4 X 5 inch negative. You could then put the negative into an enlarger and make beautiful prints of any size. Today, most people scan but there are still people who love the analog way of wet printing in a darkroom.
This post shows one scene, the Polaroid Positive (left) next to the (scanned) negative on the right. The positive was a great way to proof your composition and exposure much like a LCD screen on the back of your DSLR camera of today.
The bottom image is traditional 4 X 5 inch black and white film processed then scanned on my scanner. In this case it's Kodak T-Max 100 4 X 5 negative film. This film is still in production and available at most professional camera stores.
Posted by Brad Armstrong at 11:26 AM
Wednesday, January 5, 2011
These are two images of Wupatki National Monument. I made these images in 1986 with a friend of mine from Flagstaff,Dave Nations. Dave and I, used to team up and photograph Northern Arizona when ever I was in his neck of the woods. At the time we were both avid participants in photographing everything we could.
On a sad note, I found out last week that Dave died at 51 years old. He suffered a serious brain injury from a fall. I'm shocked by this unfortunate turn of events and can't begin to put it into words. He was a complex and interesting man that will be missed.
Posted by Brad Armstrong at 6:07 PM