Each cityscape is layered on film (in the shooting phase) with no digital manipulation.
Almost 20 years ago on my first trip to San Francisco, I ran out of film. I was miles from a strip mall or camera store and decided I would just wind back to the beginning and shoot over the whole roll again. Inspired by the images randomly created that day, my project was born: I would capture at least one city from each of the 50 States in the same way.
I use multiple exposure techniques to utilize iconic imagery in a less pristine way than our high-resolution world dictates. Any tourist in the world can stand in front of a monument and take the same stagnant image, I want to capture the event of experiencing.
I think of an entire roll of 36 exposures as my blank canvas. Free from the constraints of a single frame, I stop advance or rewind to layer as I curate the image. I hold loose filters and found objects over the lens to blur and overlap details of the life, heart and history of a city. My goal is to take a flat photo and heighten the visual by adding discovery, subjective thought and personal experience to the palate. In this way I can infuse my fingerprint throughout while telling a story.
I call this technique "long form multiple exposure".
While I interpret each city’s unique beat and rhythm, I incorporate an anthropological slant, adding close ups of artifacts over a sweeping vista eliciting a multi-dimensional experience. The viewer becomes the traveler, unraveling my journey and getting in-between the layers, which often reveal their secrets slowly over time.
I use a Canon AE-1 and 35 mm film. Many different lenses are interchanged (wide angle, 50mm and a several zoom lenses) in creating each image as there are anywhere from 2-10+ shots in one composition. I also consider the different color-casts or saturation values in choosing what film I shoot with to coincide with the particular sense of place.
Most of these images have been scanned from the negative; no additional editing has been done. No HDR software was used on these scans.
All images on this site are available for purchase. For inquires or commissioned work please contact Andrew Hammer at
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