For the Opening Reception of Elizabeth A. Kazda's Spectral Light Photography Exhibit. Refreshments and hors d'oeuvres will be served.
This exhibit will run through the month of June.
Spectral Light Photography
by Elizabeth A. Kazda
When sunlight passes through a prism, white light is separated into the spectral (“rainbow”) colors. I have invented techniques to harness this spectral light as both a light source and a means to color various subjects. White flowers, white paper, and colorless glass are some of the subjects I have photographed using Spectral Light Photography. These images are not photoshop creations.
This work evolved from my observation of a beveled glass table in my home. During certain times of the year the sun is at just the right angle to create spectral colors passing through the glass onto the floor. This inspired me to purchase a prism and experiment with it. The first time I did this was in September, 2016. I was trying to photograph the generated spectrum on a piece of paper. While doing this, my white cat sat on the paper. His white fur became illuminated with rainbow colors. I was struck by the purity and beauty of the color reflecting off his fur. This was the first spectral light image that I photographed, and it began my development of Spectral Light Photography.
Photography found me by accident. In 2013, I embarked on a mission to walk every street in my home town of Markesan. I enjoyed getting outside and taking in all the sights, smells and sounds. During that period my dad became very ill and was hospitalized. I decided to take my husband’s little point and shoot camera with me on my walks. Because my dad lived in Markesan back in the 1960s, I thought he would enjoy a few photos of the town that I could email to him in the hospital. Something very special happened as I tried to capture interesting things to send to my dad. I found I delighted in the process of photography. My dad has always loved cameras and photography - and he really enjoyed my photos.
Thankfully, my dad recovered from his illness. He could see that I was developing a keen interest in photography and gave me one of his cameras to experiment with. I knew nothing about photographic technique or how to use the functions on the camera. But I had a great time trying to learn! On Father’s Day of 2014, my dad gave me one of his “good” Nikon cameras and a macro lens. This is when I really started to learn everything I could about photography.
In 2015 I took an online course and a Macro Bootcamp weekend seminar with the fantastic macro (close-up) photographer Mike Moats. This provided me with a good foundation of macro technique. Seeing insects, flowers and plants through a macro lens is like being given a secret window through which to view the normally unseen world. Everything is magnified when looking through the lens. I have never been an outdoors enthusiast, but macro photography gave me a reason to sit in nature and observe it in a way I had never done before.
As my skills with the camera evolved, I started to appreciate its capacity as an “art creating tool”. By understanding how the camera sees light, one can exploit that knowledge to make unique choices in how an image will be captured. The more I understood how the camera worked, the more creative I could get. I realized I could do more than just photograph subjects that were already there; I could actually come up with unique creations of my own to photograph. And that is the goal of my Spectral Light Photography work: I want to create something entirely new.
Prior to pursuing photography, I painted and created jewelry. I have a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Graduate Gemologist certification. For me, photography is the perfect mix of art and science. My husband, two cats, and I live in Markesan. On sunny days you will find me “following” the sun throughout the rooms of our house with my prisms and camera.
My Spectral Light Photography images are taken with the Nikon D610 camera and 105mm macro lens. The RAW images are edited in Lightroom with basic adjustments to exposure, contrast, saturation, clarity, and sharpening. Photoshop is used to remove spots and small imperfections. I do my own printing using the Epson SureColor P600 printer. I print my images on archival Epson Hot Press Natural paper or archival Epson Legacy Baryta paper using archival Epson inks.