Corner of NW 24th St.
and NW 5th Ave.
9.32am to 10.17am.
Shot - June, 2019
I had this itch - I wanted to explore my new home, Miami. I wanted to photograph it's urban environment. But I just couldn't put my finger on how I wanted the pictures to look and feel.
After going out and trying all sorts of different cameras - 35mm, 4x5, 6x6, film, digital - I landed on a combination of techniques that liked - long exposure and stacking images.
I use a long enough exposure to blur any traffic. Stacking the frames gives me total control over the story happening in the picture.
Wynwood #130 is the first of a new series of images I am working on. Like the Calle Ocho series the images are a composite of images taken in the same session and stacked in Photoshop. I added and subtracted elements from the scene to make it look how I wanted.
Wynwood, formerly a gritty industrial area of Miami, is now a huge open air canvas for the world's top street artists. It's mind blowing walking around and immersing yourself in all the amazing art.
My inspiration for this technique came from two places.
First, a daguerrotype I found on the web.
This is generally accepted as the earliest photograph to include people. Only the two men near the bottom right corner, one of them having his boots polished by the other, remained in one place long enough to be visible.
It would have been a busy street, before cars of course, but because the exposure lasted for over 10 minutes anything that moved left no trace.
I marveled at the images in the book, so well constructed, perfectly staged, seemingly random, gloriously mundane. I could see what he had done, but I had to do some research to figure out the techy part.
I jumped on google and learned how to stack images and “paint in' and "paint out" elements of the image underneath. Here are some of the links I found:
I found Jesús Ramirez to be a great teacher:
These are the frames I used for Wynwood #130. The base image is the long exposure image. It helped me erase any cars moving through the junction, and let me put some movement in the sky, in the trees and the cranes.
The lockdown has kept me off the streets. Landscape/ urban photography is pretty solitary so social distancing will be easy and I hope to be getting out and about and continuing this series soon.