A trip out of town is always a great way to get the creative juices flowing. Then visiting galleries is just an added bonus. But when it’s visiting a gallery that is showing your college roommates beautiful black and white photos- you have hit the jackpot! When we received the invite in the mail about Troy Plair’s show at a gallery called Caos on F in DC, I called and told him to reserve that spare bedroom for his out of town guests and biggest fans- myself and Donna.
When we meet in the early 90’s in Daytona Florida while attending the SouthEast Center for Photographic Studies, Troy was photographing on the streets and also living out of his van. I offered my apartment up for half the rent and we had a deal. I got to see a lot of Troy’s work in those early years and felt there was certainly something special there. But the boy had a bit of trouble printing in the darkroom.
Now I see his work and it’s obvious all that has changed.
The images are truly striking. Stunning black and whites with depth and feeling. This transformed printing takes place in his basement darkroom. He’s old school and when I say old school I mean it- he’s never touched digital. I joke and call him a luddite and he just smiles and trys to defend himself. But the place smells like fixer. And that old Nikon slung around his shoulder makes that long lost clicking sound of the old world. I had forgotten about that heavy mechanism sound.
Donna and I are now very proud owners of three of Troy’s original photographs- hand printed and with custom, hand made frames. He does it all himself and it’s truly impressive.
Here’s a photo of Troy (man on the left) hanging out with Michael Berman and Matthew Falls at CAOS on F.
And here is the gallery the night of the opening. It was a great night! And I have a heartfelt congratulation going out to my old friend. I look forward to attending more of his sucessful events in the future- as long as he keeps me on his mailing list….