My first “real” exposure to photography was a black and white photography and darkroom class I took at Marshall. I had taken pictures before that, but never seriously. We all had those oblong cameras on our 6thgrade patrol trip to Washington DC that advanced the film with a thumb slide.
In 1998, I moved to California and mothballed my darkroom. I didn’t have the room for it, and I wasn’t shooting much at that time anyway. Later that same year, I saw a series of photographs by Ernie Brooks that blew me away. The show was made up entirely of underwater images in black and white. I was amazed by what I saw and I never forgot those photographs, but it never occurred to me to try black and white underwater photography for myself. (I admit, sometimes, I’m a little dense…)
Earlier this summer, I was scuba diving with my father in Summersville Lake when I realized that everything was monotone—in this case, shades of green. Suddenly a light came on in my brain that the photographs I was making, and everything around me, would look good in black and white. And a new project was born.
Even in black and white.