Oil Lamp in Window

One of my artistic periods was during the early 1980’s while I was living in Dutchess County, New York. I lived in the towns of Poughkeepsie, Wappingers Falls, and Hopewell Junction. I worked in a retail camera store with a color finishing machine to play with to create my own wet process color prints. I belonged to a public darkroom in Poughkeepsie. I was part of camera club. It was an unsettled time in my life when work and residences changed frequently and ended in May 1985 with an abrupt move to Maine.

I was living in the most awful apartment I have ever or would ever live in when I arranged this still life “Oil Lamp in Window.” This was the only window and source of natural light in this very dark basement apartment. I had noticed how the light became magical as it shown through the window and arranged the still life to take advantage of the romantic light.

It was before Halloween in October 1983. I had made a spider web, and made a spider to decorate the window above the shelf. On the shelf an orange ceramic pumpkin sat which I had painted in a greenware ceramics class. I used my 1984 Canon F-1 to take a roll of some forgotten kind of color negative film to capture my Halloween decorations. I usually hand held my camera but for these I put it on a tripod. I took several images of my pumpkin, spider and spider web but only one shot of this Oil Lamp!

I don’t remember the exact chronology of how many or the when of my print making from my days when I used Elm City Photo for my enlargements. I have two remaining prints from that that time. I know that it was exhibited in the 1986 Waterville Arts Festival and that it won first place in the Waterville Camera Club contest in 1989. In September 2002 I asked for a digital copy to be made from the original negative. It is only a 1.2 MB digital copy.

In 2010 I bought an Epson Stylus Pro Ultrachrome Printer to use to make my own digital prints from my work. This image was created in March 2019 using Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop to enhance its quality to remove scratches and grain still evident in the digital copy from 2002. I regret not having taken more care with my negatives or obtaining a better digital copy before more color shifted in the negative.

A print of this image is for sale during April at the best pizza place in Waterville, The Grand Central Cafe at 10 Railroad Square. http://thegrandcentralcafe.com/