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MJ Sharp

A Tennessee native, M. J. Sharp was based at the award-winning alternative newsweekly The Independent in Durham, North Carolina, for most of the 1990s. She has also freelanced extensively, both locally and nationally. For the past few years, she has concentrated on large-format night photography and, in 2007, earned her MFA from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.


Black-eyed Susans

The camera was positioned at ground level for a heroic perspective on the leggy growth of these summer blooms. For close up shots like this one, Sharp hedges her bets with depth of field. She often stops down her lens to make sure her subject is in focus. A camping light placed on the ground to the left of the camera blasts the flowers with light. The fall-off of the light source allows foreground and background to fade to black.

© MJ Sharp
Camera: 4 x 5 Speed Graphic, Lens: 135mm Graflex or 180mm Schneider
Aperture: between f5.6 – f11, Exposure: 4 – 8 minutes , Film: Fuji NPL 160 Tungsten

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