I believe very strongly in supporting small, family run businesses. After all, that is what most independent artists are. When it comes to products that directly contribute to my artwork I buy them from these small businesses. I like knowing that my artwork directly supports families other than just my own. If we don't support these businesses they will be gone and along with them will go the personal support and relationships that we should all value.
Canson fine art papers has a history and legacy in the fine art world dating back to 1492. They used their paper to create the first hot air balloon in 1782 and their photographic paper patent was granted in 1865. As a company that owns its paper mills and creates their paper they have fully invested in having complete control over the consistency and quality of their products.
Choosing a fine art paper for my artwork was easy. I wanted papers that would perfectly represent my personal vision for my artwork. Papers that were consistent in character and of the highest quality. I’ve often looked to the master artists and painters for inspiration, not just for color, composition, and concepts but also paper choice. I print on some of the same papers used by Michelangelo, Caravaggio, Rembrandt, Picaso, Degas, Chagall, Matisse, Hockney, Dali, and Warhol.
I put a tremendous amount of work into my underwater photography. While you can see a representation of my work digitally online, my final artwork is always the fine art print. I use the best camera, lenses, lights, and printer, why would I choose anything less than the best paper as the final manifestation of my artwork? Canson Infinity creates papers that allow me to express my unique artistic signature.Many experts, myself included, believe Canson Infinity’s Platine Fibre Rag to be the best inkjet fine art photo paper in the world. Their Arches BFK Rives Pure White is my absolute favorite matte paper due to its ability to reproduce color, blacks and sharpness, slight texture and being 100% cotton with no OBAs. While they aren’t technically a family run business, in many ways they feel like it to me. I’ve known Scott, Chris and Jane for long enough to feel like family. They love the beautiful papers they create and feel a strong sense of responsibility to photographers to give them the best products possible.
Here we are filming for a marketing piece for the release of Canon's latest line of large format printers in partnership with Canson Infinity papers. You can check out the video on my YouTube channel.
Freestyle Photographic Supplies
When you leave the Freestyle store you have a direct view of both the Hollywood sign and Griffith Observatory on the hills above Hollywood. Opened in 1946 they are an integral supporter of photographic film, processing chemicals, photographic paper and inkjet printers and papers. I love their dedication to their customers, the industry and wonderful customer service. There are very few businesses left that are dedicated to photography, not cameras, which are consumer electronics now, but actual photography where the final result is a physical printed photograph. This includes analog and digital inkjet as well as alternative and creative artistic processes. This small family owned business needs our support to keep the industry alive. I am not a film photographer but I value film photography so I support this business by purchasing my inkjet paper, inkjet printer, ink cartridges, foam core, hinge tape, gaffer tape, photo corners, print sleeves and much more from them.
I love this small family owned business in Germany that makes the underwater housings for my cameras and lights. They are the only housings I have ever used as they are perfect for what I do. The owner, Chris, purchased the company years ago so that he would have a small business that his wife and children could work on together. Their products enable other families to be able to capture photos of their vacations without worrying about ruining their cameras in the water. I love his purpose and how supportive they are. They don’t have a sponsorship program, I’m not paid by them and I have been purchasing their underwater housings for years. I just believe strongly in their products and work ethic.
The Levin Company
The Levin Frame company is run by Brad Levin who took it over from his parents who can still be seen coming to work at the warehouse. They carry, make and custom order a very wide variety of beautiful frames and offer the service of professionally framing prints and other artwork. They have always welcomed me with open arms and have been kind and generous with finding me special frames for my work. Again, I’m not paid by them, I just love them and what they do.
Pro Edu is an online education website for Photographs. It's owned by Gary and David is the president. It's a small business devoted to educating intermediate to advanced photographers in areas that were not covered by online education websites. I'm very proud that they chose me to teach a class on fine art inkjet printing. We should begin filming after the global pandemic of the early 2020s. In the meantime I've been featured on their podcast and I've written articles on printing for their blog.
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