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| p.1 #10 · John Sexton and Kim Weston Interviews |
Wow- Being into large format photography, and leaning more and more into the B&W realm, I found the John Sexton interview absolutely fascinating. Thanks very much for posting. I'm still trying to figure out what it has to do with Epson, though. Maybe he uses their papers?
A couple things, Chris.
I was also a bit surprised to see Epson create and share these presentations on two excellent photographers who are known for working with traditional black and white film media and printing in the optical/chemical darkroom. Maybe Epson is just doing a good corporate citizen thing? Or, for the skeptics, we might acknowledge that presenting Sexton and Weston under their name does serve to add credibility to them and their products. Whatever. I'm just very pleased that they made these wonderful interview available.
I only know Kim Weston by reputation and by means of seeing some of his prints, but I've had the good fortune to run into John a few times - several in the Sierra backcountry and a few times back here in the civilized world. If you are getting into black and white, you couldn't do better than to look more closely at work done by folks like John and the whole group of photographers who link back to a common experience with Ansel Adams - what I think of as the "west coast landscape school" of photographers, though they certainly do not limit themselves to doing landscape photography.
(I have no financial interest in this, so I hope that no one minds me pointing out that John does some excellent workshops every year in California, including one with my friend Charlie Cramer - yet another brilliant photographer, printer, teacher - that focus on printing. If you want to print your black and white work... it is hard to imagine two better teachers.)
(I have a funny story about the first time I met John. I was in the Yosemite back-country for a few days of solo backpacking to a place where I often photograph. I had camped at the first of three lakes that sit in a west-facing area, and on the second day I decided to hike to the upper lake late in the day to photograph a particular lakeside tree that I had been thinking about. The route to the upper lake is cross-country, and I knew that I would be coming back down alone after dark, so as I hiked up I was very focused on fixing a series of landmarks in my mind that I could use on the return hike. Needless to say, I was in tunnel-vision mode: Take the cutoff at the big tree, follow the gully to the small meadow, turn 90 degrees to the right at the big boulder and head for the group of three trees... In this mode, I approached the destination lake, focusing on individual landmarks, walked to a specific point near the shoreline, and made my final right turn to my tree.
A few moments later I finally thought to actually look around at the rest of my surroundings, and I noticed a campsite set up in a group of small trees less than 100 feet from my position, and I saw tripods standing there. So I walked up to say "hi," and was met by a familiar-looking fellow. I said, "You look a lot like John Sexton," to which he replied, "That's probably because I am." I extended my hand... and John, who had been washing their dishes, pulled his hand out of the bucket of soapy water and shook mine.
Memorable, no? ;-)