reciprocity

The purpose of this series of photographs is to show the long-term results of the environment's affects, both on itself, and on manmade objects. As the name suggests, "reciprocity" portrays the give and take relationship of nature's daily cycle, but the meaning is a double entendre, playing on photographic film's reluctance to record an image during excessively long exposures. 

After months of testing and developing specialized techniques, I am able to make a single exposure that lasts 24 hours, pushing the envelope of what is possible with photography gear, and photography itself.

The utmost of focus and dedication goes into making each photograph, as the camera is positioned not only for a balanced composition, but also taking multiple factors into consideration, such as wind, cloud cover, rain, temperature, and the ever-changing light, due to the sun and moon's location throughout the 24 hour exposure period. If not ideal, each of these elements will have an adverse effect on the film's recording, and can render the photograph–24 hours of effort–unusable. Of course, it remains unknown whether all of this planning and forethought was in vain until the film is later processed and carefully inspected. It is for these reasons that this series of photographs is pushing the furthest reaches of what is attainable with still photography, both technically and aesthetically.

PROPOSAL: Through this testing process, I have applied many different 4x5 cameras, and have found that the results with the Chamonix body are the most consistently sharp, and afford me the opportunity to pack more gear, because of how light and compact the body is. The Chamonix system is the most rigid body I have been able to find, which is the most critical aspect of producing these extraordinarily long exposures, in which the slightest camera movement during the exposure process will ruin the photograph. I have also found that the Chamonix is superior because of its extensive use of inert materials, mainly the carbon base. Cameras consisting mostly of metal expand and contract through temperature cycles, which create out of focus images. I have found the same problems with metal vs. carbon tripods.

I would like to propose using a Chamonix 45H-1 for this project, as it has locking focus knobs, and overlapping extensions of the focusing rack, which will help retain rigidity, and prevent camera movements from occurring during exposure.

In exchange for the use of a camera, I will be filming behind the scenes time lapses of select exposures, and other content specific to this project, which will feature Chamonix cameras. Chamonix is encouraged to share this content on its website, as well as social media channels.

The photographs resulting from this series will be submitted for print consideration with LensWork magazine, photograph magazine, Black & White magazine, as well as many online photographic community sites. A traveling exhibition will also be put together, and offered to galleries and international museums for exhibition consideration.

-Mike Basher

mike@mikebasher.com