Inspired by Theophrastus's Historia Plantarum, Enquiry into Luminous Botany consists of a collection of journal pages portraying botanicals in their most luminous state. Unlike Historia Plantarum though, this body of work focuses more on plants' artistic rather than scientific attributes. My lumen prints are made on expired black & white photo paper and printed on Kozo (Mulberry) paper.
Lumen prints are one-of-a-kind photographic images created without the use of a camera. The process involves layering objects, usually plants, directly on natural fiber black and white photographic paper, which is then exposed to UV light, such as the Sun. Any area on the paper not covered by objects gets darker under the sunlight while the other areas will have a gradient of luminosity depending on the distance of parts of the objects to the paper. The paper is then developed in a traditional darkroom. Any color in the final print is the result of chemical reactions on the paper. After an optional toning, the process is usually finished. I go one step further though. I photograph the lumen prints and bring them to the computer where I apply cinematic effects and collage them with additional images of the botanicals used.
Jurors Connie and Jerry Rosenthal from Rfotofolio selected 45 out of 1,150 images for the gallery exhibition at Center for Photographic Art in Carmel, California.