Pictures live everywhere. I visit an idea that it is the photographer’s task to find them, and with practice, the banal offers its gems.
My first experienced with a darkroom was in an Odessa school. I rolled film, listened to music and printed for a journalism class. I cut my teeth at ball games and saw photos of the Dust Bowl understanding photographers carved a documentary path on the High Plains.
After college, I worked at a newspaper and ventured across the High Plains in my free time meeting a place called Happy. I saw grain elevators and brick streets. I watched kernels of wheat dance in the wind and viewed Palo Duro Canyon, an inverted mountain. Furthermore, a friend gifted an 8x10 enlarger, and I entered a world of large-format photography. However, I moved to Austin for work and watched my newly found Eden shrink in the rearview.
So happy it hurts, after five years in the city and a stay at Navasota, I returned to Odessa with an appreciation for studio arts and pulled the 8x10 enlarger from storage to open a darkroom named the Dry Plate Factory & Press. From my shop, I can keep an eye on my home, watch the oil patch, and toil inside—a picture maker absorbing light.