Mark Howell Photographs

Artist's Statement

I started photographing with artistic intent about fifteen years ago. A recovering poet, I had had enough of wandering about inside myself, of trying to put myself into words. So I bought a camera and went out to look at the world. I soon discovered that the basic impulse that caused me to trip the shutter was to praise.

A couple of years later, I put together my first darkroom. In the process of learning to convey what I saw and felt, I discovered a deep satisfaction in printmaking. Thus the twin motives of my photographic work: to make and to praise.

Biography & Resume

Born in Portland, Oregon, 1951.
B.A. '73 and M.A. '75, Literature, University of Oregon.
Bought first serious camera, 1989.
Assembled first darkroom, 1991.
Acquired view camera, 1992.
Lived primarily in the San Francisco Bay Area (Cupertino, Mountain View, Sunnyvale) until moving to Placerville, California, in 1999.
Exhibited in solo, two-person, and group shows at numerous venues, including Photographers Gallery, Palo Alto; Viewpoint Photographic Art Center, Camera/Arts, and The Darkroom, Sacramento; ARTS Gallery, Auburn; The Sight, online (
Participated in several art/photography auctions, including SF Camerawork; Viewpoint, Sacramento; Houston Center for Photography; Crocker Art Museum, Sacramento.
First place, Landscapes, CameraArts magazine photography contest, 2001.
First place, Landscapes, View Camera magazine photography contest, 2002.
Spotlight article, B&W magazine, January/February 2005.

Technical Information

Most of the negatives for my work were made using a 4x5 view camera (a Wista wood field, to be specific). Several were made using a Pentax 67 medium format camera. A very few were made using 35mm cameras.

Almost none of my photographs are "straight prints"; most involve at least a little darkroom manipulation, and many require a lot. All prints are silver gelatin, usually toned in thiocarbamide followed by selenium.
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