Environmental Portraits

Hagerstown, Maryland traditional country music player and crooner Mike Cunningham.

Mike plays his electric possibly more than his acoustic and had meant for our session to produce a picture of grandpa for the kids — all grown up — for Christmas, but they came out so well, the impact was so good, i.e., his delight so effusive, I’ll be surprised if the prints are not already in frames and hanging on walls.

A horizontal portrait for Mike Cunningham.

Every modern life inhabits multiple environments and roles, but one or two in the overall ecology in living develop and most authentically express the soul of the person.  With that notion in mind, family snaps may hold diverse fragments from a life — we see each other but a little bit at a time and superficially — and we’re lucky to find among snapshots even one to a few that speak for the subject.

As artists by nature construct and slip into the looks by which they would be known and forever suspended lovingly in memory, Mike has been doing his part for a while. 

We had a very good rapport. 

He took direction well.  

Between the two of us, I think we got him.


Production Notes

Field Equipage: Nikon D2x; Nikkor zoom 16-85mm and Nikkor primes 85mm and 105mm (f/2.5 Manual Focus);  Nikon L37C filters; Billingham 335 — the top flap makes a good ground cloth for kneeling (where protection or dry knees may be appreciated) — and Gitzo carbon fiber tripod with an Acratech head and Arca-Swiss quick release plates.

Computing: Adobe Lightroom 3.6.

Printing: HP B9180 with the archival (unrivaled for longevity) Vivera ink  set on InkPress Luster, 11×14 borderless

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