Meet Dean Carstens Participating In 2014 Los Alamos Artists Studio Tour

Las Trampas Church on N.M. 76 in Taos County. Photo by Dean Carstens

ART News:

This year’s Los Alamos Artists Studio Tour is Oct. 11-12 and the Los Alamos Daily Post is featuring a “Get to Know Your Artist” series leading up to the annual event.

Each of the 16 artists participating in the tour will be showcased prior to the beginning of the tour to allow our readers an opportunity to learn about them and their work.

Meet Los Alamos artist Dean Carstens:

I first discovered the wonders of the black and white darkroom when I was 13, attending a church camp near Silver City. Over the next 20 years or so I continued to develop my skills, until, by 1980, I was able to begin showing and selling my photographs at various venues around northern New Mexico, including the Fuller Lodge Art Center and local arts and crafts shows.

Since then, I have photographed numerous subjects located around northern New Mexico and the West, concentrating on architectural buildings such as adobe structures and churches. This has led me to a unique style based on traditional photography in which I mostly use a large format camera. Because I use only silver-gelatin (black and white) photographic materials, my mono-chromatic photographs have an inherent stability and increased tonal range not found with many other media.

The photographs are hand printed and developed to bring out the best from my original negatives. The prints are toned to enhance quality and then matted using museum-quality materials for maximum permanence. I do all steps of this long, arduous process.

Over the last 10 years, since I retired, I have experimented with the technology of using digital photographs as starting points. These images are converted to full-image size negatives which are contact printed onto silver-gelatin print material leading to a silver-gelatin print. This technology is much easier and uses the best of both methods; however, the results to me are not as good as the traditional methods. During the Artist Tour, I will demonstrate these techniques, if time permits and show some examples of such prints.

Learn more about the Los Alamos Artists Studio Tour here.

Read about previously published artist Joanne Kozuchowski here.

Read about previously published artist Patrick Soran here.

Read about previously published artist Fran Stoval here.

Read about previously published artist Heather Ward here.

Read about previously published artist Bettina Hehlen here.

Read about previously published artist Becky Nystrom here.

Read about previously published artist Bruce Warren here.

Read about previously published artist Stephanie Hagelberg here.

Read about previously published artist Nicole Dunn here.

Read about previously published artist Mary Carol Williams here.

Read about previously published artist Marjorie Madsen here

Read about previously published artist Thelma Hahn here.

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