Monday, June 07, 2010

late, but oh so magnificent

I'm a paper person. Seriously. There's a name for my condition. It's papyrophilia. Just one of my many neuroses.

I revel in beautiful handmade linen papers and Japanese oragami paper. I'll buy a book even if I don't want to read it if it has beautiful end papers.

It's really quite out of control. But what is there to do? I'm too tired these days for any self introspection anyway.

So needless to say, I take announcements and invitations very seriously.

It took forever to finally get Henry's birth announcement finished, but here it is.

I think they turned out magnificent.

Henry Birth Announcement
Photographer Siobhan Ridgway
Taken using a Mamiya Twin Lens on black and white.

Henry's Birth Announcement

Letterpress onto 220 lb. 100% cotton paper by Page Stationary

Henry's Birth Announcements

And now, a word about the photographer.

And when I say photographer, I mean it in the truest sense.

Bear with me here. I'm going to express an opinion. Scary, I know. What comments will I get? The opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the population at large.

Having said that, I want to say this: Let's call a spade a spade shall we? I mean, it seems that there are a kabillion people running around these days calling themselves "photographers". To that I say, ummmmm. Sorry but no.

I get compliments on the photos I post here on my blog and to my Flickr page. And when I get those compliments, I feel inclined to tell whomever is the complimentor, that I am not a gifted photographer, just a girl who has a good eye for composition and knows how to use Photoshop and I think this is true of most people taking photos today.

Digital cameras have become so incredibly good, they are almost fail safe. And what the camera dosen't take care of, Photoshop can.

And then there are little gems like Siobhan Ridgway.  Siobhan took the photo of Henry with an old camera she most likely bought on ebay or found at an estate sale. She came to my house and found a room with the kind of lighting she wanted and she took a few shots. Not five hundred. Remember, this is old school. She used specialized square format film that she loaded one exposure at a time.

Siobhan shooting Henry
Siobhan shooting Henry (These photos are totally Photoshopped)

She did not use Photoshop or even crop. What you see is all her.

Think about it. When was the last time you saw a photo that was totally untouched?

When I meet Siobhan I was a little intimidated. First of all, she's beautiful. A natural kind of beauty. She used to live in New York and shoot for fashion magazines. She showed me her portfolio which included some tintypes she had shot last Summer.

That night I dreamt about them. No joke.

They take my breath away.



A computer screen doesn't do these justice. It doesn't allow for the shiny nature of the tin or the weight of each photo when you hold it in your hand.

Siobhan lives in Southern California. You can see her tintypes in person at the Del Mar Fair or by appointment. You can see more of her work on her website, Siobhan Photography.


Love Stitched said...

BEAUTIFUL baby announcement!! I love how simple and classic they are!!

lorie said...

April! You rock, sista. These are gorgeous.

EntwinedEssentials said...

These are great and oh so true. Such beautiful work!

Michaela said...

Love it! What a sweet photo too.

margie said...

the babe...
the announcement...
the photography...
love love love...

Jessa said...


the emily said...

Those are amazing! I agree with you about any joe schmoe buying a DSLR and calling him/herself a photographer. The difference between the real and the wannabe is usually price, and you're lucky you can afford the real. I get by with the fake, and they do just fine, but to some day have a real photographer would be a dream come true.

From the Kitchen said...

You are so right! This lady is amazing. I didn't even realize it was still possible to do tintypes. I think I mentioned (long ago) that we lived in La Jolla. The next time I'm in town, I will definitely make an appointment with her for something--don't know what yet.

The birth announcements are wonderful.

I, too, have a paper addiction. Recently visited Twin Rockers in Brookston, IN where they do paper as it was done in the 11th century. Amazing process. Amazing paper.

I never read a mass paperback. Can't stand the paper. I'd rather pay three times as much for a trade paperback. I WILL NEVER OWN A KINDLE!!


annie said...

I'm with you...Henry is perfection, letterpress is divine and there is nothing like a "real" photographer! I couldn't agree more! : ) Love the announcement! Your taste is flawless!

Yolanda said...

Yes, you are so right. A true photographer. Love it, thanks for sharing.

Michelle said...

Where the yeck to you find the time to organize a photoshoot and get baby announcements done?! I love checking out new photographers. Off to check out her site!

The Damsel In Dis Dress said...

Good grief! I just found you blog hopping and I'm stunned. Beautiful. I'll be back.

Siobhan Ridgway said...

Thank you April for all your kind words and admiration!!

It is so rare for me to meet someone who truly understands and appreciates the little things in life that requires time, creativity, passion,craft and lots of love. It is funny how all those little things that make our heart jump can bring people together and evoke so much happiness.

I hope we can create a new project soon. Your vision and talents are beautiful and refreshing. I am glad I got to know you and had the pleasure of taking lovely photos of your newest pride and joy. Enjoy!

A. HOLLAND. ETC. said...

BEAUTIFUL. the announcement and the photograph. PERFECTION! anyway i can con you into sending us one? :)

CrowNology said...

Hear hear!
Great blog and work.