Yuri Long: Four Generations

I'm a big believer in the notion that as photographers we often play the part of historian.  It's one of the reasons I love what I do so much.  Capturing families in time for future generations... the thought gives me goosebumps! I love these Yuri!

- Sandra

From Yuri:

"After attending the Film for the Studio Photographer workshop in Charlottesville, VA back in July, I became obsessed with the idea of shooting indoors. As much as I love the look of natural light, I always preferred the controlled environment of the studio, and wanted to be able to shoot that way. I had even started learning how to use studio lighting before the workshop. And while the workshop itself was full of great info on making use of natural, window light, which I found immensely useful, the unpredictability of clients' homes made sticking to Sandra's mantra of "simple, predictable, consistent" difficult. So I set out to find a way to recreate that natural window light look with artificial lighting. After developing a bit of a method, I put out a call to do some sessions to hone this idea.

I was thrilled when my friend Brighton responded! A native Seattleite, her entire family followed her to DC including her mother and grandmother, plus she had a beautiful little baby girl earlier this year. The opportunity to record four generations of women together was too good to pass up, so I went to her condo with a single light, assessed things, moved some furniture around, and got to work. These are the results, and I couldn't be happier with how it turned out. My original concept was to create jus simple, timeless black and white portraits of each of them, and then do a group portrait. But once there it occurred to me to take advantage of a willing group and my setup to try some color film as well. So we did various mother-daughter combinations and even pulled in Brighton's husband Fred for some family portraits too.

The black and white photographs were shot on Ilford FP4 and PanF using a Rolleiflex, developed at home, and delivered as a portfolio of 5x7 and 8x10 gelatin silver prints made by hand in the darkroom. So old school, but it felt just right! I scanned and cropped the negatives to match the prints. The color - Kodak Porta 400 and 800 in a Mamiya 645 Pro TL - were beautifully processed by the FIND Lab."

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