Category Archives: Lighting

Classic Light

I was invited to go to a wedding in Maine a couple of years ago. It was my first time visiting that part of the country ( I had lived in New England but never been to Maine). It was beautiful. I am biased and I believe the Northwest dwarfs even Maine, but make no mistake Maine is quite pretty.

During the summer in the late evening, after the golden hour and before dusk, there is the light that is divine- it is still slightly warm and golden to give everything a glowing look but it’s not harsh and more open shady than the rest of the day to again give everything a glowing look. It starts to get more of the cooler shades of dusk but it is all blended together perfectly together.

Look at these snapshots of the happy couple. While the pictures are fuzzy due to operator error, the colors are perfection. They’re glowing and balanced (warm + cools).


This type of lighting and color will never go out of style.

I remembered another example of classic lighting, from the time when I went to Cooper Mountain with Marilyn and her daughter.

Laura Letinsky may be the queen of color because she pushes the low light to a glowing saturation, but John Dolan is also a master of color and much of his work showcases this kind of wonderful classic light.

John Dolan
John Dolan
John Dolan
John Dolan

Girl with Pigtails and Roses (and a Pearl Earring)


Have you seen Girl with a Pearl Earring, based on the famous Vermeer painting?

Oh man, I thought Colin Firth, was at his best as my movie Husband, Mr Darcy, in Pride and Prejudice, but he has never looked better than when he portrayed the artist Vermeer in this movie. Scarlett Johansson is great in this movie too.

There’s several interesting scenes for artists.

The way that they make paint with ground powder of different pigments.

Contemporary artist Anna Valdez also uses pigments to create her custom oil paints. I think this is a bit too messy and potentially environmentally unfriendly for me to risk:

Raw pigments – Ultramarine Violet, Ultramarine Red and Titanium Grey. @sinopia_pigments

A photo posted by Anna Valdez (@missannavaldez) on

The beautiful, beautiful northern facing window lighting that is evident in all of Vermeer’s work. It also makes the perfect lighting for photography. My house has no northern facing windows. Sad face.

The camera obscura tool that Vermeer uses to help him draw accurate compositions. I’d like one too!


From my old portfolio site: Polaroids

I found my backup folder to my old portfolio site on my external hard drive. It’s nice to remember these images.

These actually aren’t Polaroids…Polaroid film went dunzo years before I got the chance to really explore them. It’s a shame. I love the look of Polaroids. I like when there are blurred parts and streaky parts and out of focus parts. It looks like a human took this picture and not some robot – at least not a boring robot.

Impossible Film has been trying to keep instant film going. It’s pretty expensive but they are still doing lots of development to make the film better. I took these on an early batch, when annoyingly the gel part that makes instant film instant would peel off unpredictably.

Why bother with instant film?

Look at these colors. Look at the glow. Look at the softness.




See some more polaroids from film director Tarkovsky in this book.

Instant Light, Tarkovsky

I used the early version of this film, would be curious how well the film works now: