There are portfolios and then there are portfolios.
A normal portfolio for me and many others is prints that are just the prints, no mounts, no over matts, perhaps an interleaving sheet between the prints, maybe a title page, but maybe neither. All this for efficiency, less weight, bulk, and easier to travel with and store. This is a common print presentation at portfolio reviews. I often show work to museum curators this way. Not a bad system for presentation but not luxurious.
By the way, since we are conversing in the language of photographic prints, I have always made my own prints and will continue to do so.
The old way was that everything had a backing of museum board, a hinged over mat and the prints were either photo cornered to hold them in place, or with even a more ancient system, they were dry mounted.
For the new portfolio of pictures from Utah made in November I decided to make a traditional portfolio, using backing museum board, white 4-ply over mats in a museum box. This is a boxed set made to high archival standards.
Open this 22.5 x 30.5 inch box and you are confronted with a white sheet of paper and a pair of cotton gloves. Yes, this is a heavy portfolio.
The idea is to set the tone: "Put the gloves on, please, or let one of the staff show you the prints. Thank you". Of course, I don't have staff, but you get the idea. I have worked to make something special here, and handling them entails a responsibility to take care to preserve their pristine quality. Pretentious? I hope not.
Here's the title, alluding to perhaps a second Utah portfolio coming (we'll see, I am working on that now).
Slide the white sheet over and the first image of 18 or so is revealed.
The Museum Box comes from Archival Methods, mats are by Stanhope framers in Somerville. Why not make the mats myself? My mat cutting machine, a C&H 60 inch leaves an unavoidable cross overcut in each corner. The Stanhope mats are perfect.
In fact, the whole portfolio is as close to consummate as I can go. The best prints I can make, the best imagery I can shoot, working to harness sensibilities and skills obtained now over 50 years. Not a particularly new way of seeing, this is landscape imagery that is not alarming or shocking but photographs that hopefully are beautiful, intelligent, compassionate, colorful, and working off the potential for what is in front of the lens of my camera to become photographs that are transcendent and perhaps sublime.
If you are interested in seeing more from this series, please contact Maru at Insight Arts Management.
(978)496-4901And, as always, thank you for reading the blog.