Hi Josh I really love your work. What I'm drawn to most is the intimacy in the photographs. I'm curious about your process in settling your subjects in. I know the slowness of large format probably aids to relax and slow the moment but also wondering how you approach your subjects and how you interect with them to allow for what seems like such a vulnerable and pure moment. Thanks
Hi, thanks so much and good question. For me it’s all about connection, which isn’t an easy thing. Every person is different, and a story of some sort to tell be it verbally or visually. For me, I’m curious about the people I photograph so I engage them in conversation while we shoot, it’s really as simple as that. I try to make them forget I’m pointing a camera at them as much as I can, while still being direct about what I’m looking for from them in each photograph. Sometimes you get lucky and people let their guard down quickly, other times it takes some work. But the biggest part is being present and engaged in your subject, don’t treat them like an object to be photographed, but as a person. That’s all really, pretty simple.
Hi Josh, I would love to try tintypes some time but view cameras look pretty expensive. What camera would you recommend? Love your work.
You can shoot tintypes on pretty much any analog camera that you can get a plate to fit into, old polaroid cameras, medium formats, etc. There’s a number of online resources and tutorials, though view cameras are sort of the easiest to deal with. Beyond the camera, you’re looking at a bit of an investment in chemistry, lab gear, and process materials that at a minimum will run you $600-1000. You’ll also be dealing with toxic/hazardous materials so take that into consideration. I would suggest taking a workshop from a reputable wet plate photographer before making the decision to try it on your own. It’s not an easy or quick thing to pick up, and it can be insanely frustrating, but worth the effort if you’re willing to put in the time to learn how it works.
Hi Josh, really love your portraits. How heavily do you edit your photo's; if at all, if you don't mind me asking? Trying to get into photography myself so I'm just trying to get a feel for it.
Thanks, really appreciate that. Depends on what medium I’m working in, but for digital I do some color correction and work with levels and curves, but it’s pretty light handed. I don’t do heavy retouching at all. I try to get what I want in camera, but there are certain things I do in post. For polaroids and tintypes I basically only color correct as my scanner isn’t the best. Best in your endeavors.
Thanks so much!