David Hockney, a Rolleiflex and The Road To Prescott By Huss Hardan

David Hockney, a Rolleiflex and The Road To Prescott

By Huss Hardan

Hey Steve and Brandon. As always, thanks for providing such a great forum.

A few years ago I was watching a tv show on the famous British painter David Hockney. One always wonders what goes through the mind of such an artist, the process and how they envisage the image. What struck me was one scene where he was walking down a grey, damp, almost monochromatic country lane. And describing the explosions of colours everywhere.

I couldn’t see it, but then they showed a painting of what he had described and it was stunning. It was almost like he was looking at a negative film image. That taught me a lesson – never just look at a scene – imagine what that scene could be if you just let loose your color palette.

Fast forward to the present time. I was taking a long weekend trip from Venice Beach, California to visit a friend in Prescott, Arizona. It would be good to get out-of-town and away from the crowds, but I wasn’t prepared for the emptiness, nor the heat! Stepping out of the Jeep into the searing brightness was an experience. Initially everything looked bleached out and colourless. But as my eyes adjusted, colours began to saturate and condense.

A Rolleiflex 2.8E was used with polarizing and warming filters to create the imagined scene.. The film was expired Kodak E100G from my buddy Jim at Studio3 in Portland, Oregon.

Peace out


Along the way

Evening cloudburst

Into the valley

Passmore Gas and Propane


Upon an azure sky

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  1. Huss Really love your photos the one on your website with the Women in a Red Dress is so evocative and one of the most perfect photos I have ever seen. David Hockney would love that one. I am overwhelmed by your isight and capability if I ever get half as good then I will be estatic. Alan UK

  2. Love this set, Huss. You shoot a vibrant square frame. “Stop” is a humorous classic – the rear sign facing the desert.

  3. Thanks for all the kind comments.

    Unfortunately I sent the pics in out of the correct sequence. The two canyon shots were late in the day with the sun going down which helped in warming the scene which I wanted for that old wild west feeling. You know, like that song vegetarian cowboys sing… “oh give me a home, where the cantaloupe roam..”

    The film was expired, but good! Not like that batch that I wrote about previously.

    The folks at Studio3 kept it in their freezer and the results show. Jim and the gang there are really good peeps and you should check out their work – it’s stunning.

    Anyway, old film, IF KEPT FROZEN!!!, is good film. Go get some. And thanks again for Steve and Brandon in providing such a neat place where film and digital coexists.

    Kindest regards

  4. Hi Huss
    Great images, gosh you are certainly putting that stash of dated film to good use as I remember your previous post! There is an amazing dept to colour film images especially from a Rolleiflex. I in particular like the first and the last images so minimalist and simple and yet so interesting visually.
    Best Wishes

  5. I was in Ariz. in the mid sixties with a Rolleiflex 2.8E, mostly with Plus-x. You really have a great feeling for the skies & clouds – thunderstorms coming up canyons. I am not convinced with the over warming of the cayon/T-storm images, but like your feeling of moving-in clouds. I have to go back digitally someday.

  6. We are in the golden age of photography. The improvements in digital over the last few years is amazing and we still have a descent selection of film. Enjoy it.

      • Lovely photos, especially first 2.
        This is why i love film and cameras with believable built in film simulation presets. The Noobs with new d800, they shoot with neutral profile and skip the post-pro, no composing, just fire in continuous mode and upload 100 photos of same motive.

      • I agree with your point. My point is simple. We have great digital capabilities and we still have film around. For me that’s golden…

          • “I just loaded my very last role of NeoPan 400 into my M2. It’s a sad, very un-golden day”

            Buy more. ebay is your friend.
            Frozen B&W film lasts even longer than colour film. Decades if maintained.

          • 30 years ago digital didn’t exist. In 30 years film may be gone. At the moment we have both. Enjoy. 🙂

  7. I’m not a fan of filter effects or HDR, but these images really grab me. They have a special beauty that I appreciate.

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