The Studio Q Rocky Mountain Photography Retreat Center
Everyone needs to get away from the stressful life we live today. We need time away from social media, and the politics. We need a break! Desiring a quiet, creative life has motivated me to work toward this project.
I'm raising funds to build an eco-friendly, off-grid facility on 12 acres of land in the mountains of Colorado. The facility will be used for workshops and long-term residencies/retreats, to study and practice 19th Century photographic processes.
My name is Quinn Jacobson. I’m the owner/artist of Studio Q Photography, L.L.C. in Aurora, Colorado.
I’ve been a photographer/artist since 1982. I served in the U.S. Army as an Infantryman and as a Combat Photographer (1982-1988).
I was honorably discharged from the military in 1988. I pursued an undergraduate degree in photography/art from Weber State University (1993) and then, later, a Master of Fine Arts (M.F.A. 2007) in 19th Century photographic processes from Goddard College.
For the past 20 years, I have directly influenced the revival in historic photographic processes, specifically, the Wet Collodion process.
I have written and published three books on the Wet Collodion process (Chemical Pictures), and I’ve taught the wet collodion process for almost two decades. I’ve taught thousands of people all over the world various historic photographic processes and techniques. I lived in Europe for five years and am responsible, in large part, for the revival of the wet collodion process there. I organized and funded the Frederick Scott Archer memorial, ceremony, and exhibition in Kensal Green Cemetery in 2010. And, in 2014, I traveled to China and opened The Collodion Collective Asia (TCCA).
For the last several years, I’ve been trying to find a way to offer a more unique and valuable experience when learning 19th Century photographic processes. And it’s not only the processes; but the concepts surrounding work or ideas that need to be fleshed out. The cycle of making work, writing, and getting feedback is important in an artist's life, and most never have the chance to get it.
I’ve dreamed of having a place to teach that was special and conducive to learning. The students would be completely immersed into the processes, concepts, and goals they came to resolve. Residencies will be as long as six weeks and workshops as short as three days. There will be something that suits most everyone’s goals and needs.
Here's how it would work. If you're an artist or photographer that is struggling with concepts or techniques in a specific process, you could sign up for a residency and come to Colorado and spend a week or two on the land, living and working undisturbed from modern life. Everything would be provided; transportation to and from Colorado Springs, Colorado, all meals, and a private room in the studio will be provided. Surrounded by the beauty and peace of the Rocky Mountains while you commune with nature and work out your artistic blocks and technical issues. It's "camp" for passionate artists!
Some of the courses that will be offered are: Wet Plate Collodion, both positives, and negatives. Albumen printing, Salt printing, Collodion Chloride printing, Carbon transfer, Oil printing, the mercurial Daguerreotype process, and making Calotypes (paper negatives). The courses will offer some very unique options; Ultra Large Format plate making and printing (16” x 20” - 40x50cm), non-silver printing, etc. etc. All authentic 19th century processes and techniques. And all handmade.
1. Raise the money! My hope is that the community will see the value in this project (even beyond the rewards, which are pretty sweet!) and we can fund the framework of the facility. I'll be responsible for the rest of the funds. If there is a stretch, or it goes over the $25,000, I will upgrade the facility; more space, more potential. Here's a quick breakdown of the costs:
a. Excavating work and foundation for a 20' x 30' building: $5,000
b. Framing: $12,000
c. Doors, windows, and roof: $7,000
2. Build the Facility: My plan is to build a 600 square foot facility that will house the following:
a. North Light Studio: If you are familiar with these processes, the blue/actinic north light produce the best quality light for these techniques. Can you imagine the UV light at 8,000 feet above sea level?
b. Darkroom: A full double photo sink darkroom with wet and dry areas; print processing, paper-making, and processing.
c. Living Quarters: Space to house two people at a time. This will include two private areas with beds and accommodations, a shared bathroom, a small kitchen, and a small common area or study/library.
I'm offering my books, video workshop series, workshop vouchers, and handmade, signed prints for rewards. Click here to get more information on the prints - also, check out my web site at www.studioQ.com
Risks and challenges
The two biggest obstacles: Time and money. If the project gets funded in a month, it will take almost 4 months to complete the project. It needs to be completed by October 2017 (before winter arrives). And by completed, I mean a structure sitting on a foundation with doors and windows. Nothing inside.
My brother is a master carpenter and framer. He's built many houses over the years. I'm going to hire him to build the facility. And I have access to labor (young men and women that will haul, lug, dig, and sweat) at a very reduced rate. Everything else will be DIY or hired out - most will be DIY.
Another challenge is finishing the inside of the facility. I've got all of the darkroom and studio covered, it's the labor and living amenities that will be a challenge. The devil is in the details. I'm going to use funds from my book sales, teaching, and prints sales to finish the inside of the facility; studio, kitchen, bathroom, and bedrooms.
Please keep in mind, this is a long-term project. I won't be living full time on the property until 2020.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)