NEW RIVER STRAND | Niki ButcherBig Cypress National Preserve © 1999
Photographic Story I was driving along Tamiami Trail when I saw this great summer cloud arching it’s head over the trees in the west. I quickly pulled over and hiked out into the grassland hoping I’d get the camera set up before the clouds broke open and drenched me with rain. I took this photograph with Clyde’s 5×7 view camera. I was having a lot of fun learning how to use the camera and just getting the hang of it when our gallery became a ‘real’ business…and took my time. At first, I printed my large format images in black and white, but customers often thought it was Clyde’s work. It was confusing. So, I decided having my hand-painted work in the gallery added a different flavor for those who like color so I began hand-painting again. The Art of Hand Painting Black and White Photographs Niki prints her images on fiber-base black and white mat surface paper in the darkroom, then using Q-tips and cotton balls, she applies a thin coat of oil paint over the surface allowing the image to gently be seen through the oil paint. Archival Print Making Niki’s open edition gicleé artwork is printed on Sunset Bright Velvet Rag matte finish paper using eight archival inks. A state-of-the-art Epson Stylus Pro printer creates deep, rich dark values that hold subtle detail in the shadows as well as bright vivid colors that are truly tropical.