Photos by Elana Campos
Today we go back to a time before Photoshop, when compositing was something only a select few artists were capable of, and only by toiling away for hours in the darkroom. Jerry Uelsmann was one of the pioneers of these techniques, using multiple exposures to change the face of reality and in the process, his craft.
SPECIAL THANKS TO M/S/E/A/K FOR TURNING US ONTO THIS INCREDIBLE COLLECTIVE OF BLIND AND VISUALLY IMPAIRED PHOTOGRAPHERS:
Seeing with Photography Collective is a group of photographers based in New York City who are visually impaired, sighted and totally blind. Coming from diverse backgrounds and life experiences, we share an awareness of sight loss, along with the determination to dialogue and integrate our images into a more universal context. Sighted assistants focus and compose the view camera’s frame directed by the blind artist. Then, in a darkened room, we leave the camera’s shutter open as we slowly paint our sitter with a small flashlight …human scaled exposures, lasting many minutes, rather than the instant shutter click we typically hear. Luminous distortions, blurred or glowing forms result from the technique, not digital altering. The nature of our visual limitations can provoke any viewer or perceiver of these portraits…Is less, more? What is seeing? What does one choose to see? — Steven Erra