Curly Top in Piazza San Marco
As I uploaded a new gallery to my website, Venice in Black and White , I began to recall my roots as a photographer. The gallery features black and white images created on my first visit to Venice in October 1998. The images were originally captured on Ilford black and white film but have been scanned for digital printing, which I do myself.
It was the days of film cameras. In my early travels I carried two camera bodies, one loaded with black and white film and one with color. Neither camera had auto-focus and most of my lenses were fixed lenses (no zoom capabilities). Although Venice is a city full of colorful reflections, black and white seemed to capture the timeless feel of the place. Some of my favorite images were shot in Piazza San Marco as I followed the children interacting with the pigeons, shooting with a 135mm Zeiss portraiture lens. Their happy faces and rapt attention to the birds echoed the thrills of childhood.
Although I have moved on with the times and now shoot exclusively with digital cameras, I still have to acknowledge my roots. The knowledge and experience I learned, shooting with film and equipment with more limited capabilities, has affected the way I look at scenes and the way I "see". Though I have no desire to return to those days, I try to keep in mind where I have been, and as I travel into the future with my photography I recall my roots from time to time.