Jes Lee

New Projects

Lake Superior Project


It has been awhile since I’ve posted here. I have plans for that to change, slowly. You’ll start to see more posts, more projects, more “how did she do that” from me going forward. 

For now, I want to introduce you to one of the “many” projects I have in the works. 

This project centers around Lake Superior, and how she changes (yes, I see this beautiful lake as a feminine spirit) month to month.

My plan is to drive north once per month, and photograph the same four locations. The main photographs will be taken with my medium format Hasselblad 501c/m camera using Ilford black and white film. I of course could never leave the house with only one camera, and will be sharing instant film photos, as well as digital photos, over the next several months.

I started these trips in May.

My first trip on one of those beautiful hazy mornings, when the horizon blurs together. This image was taken in Canal Park in downtown Duluth.

I’m not entirely certain where this project will lead. I have hopes of where I would like it to go, but we are still in conversation about details. This is a different project for me. I will never get tired of seeing the lake, or of the drive up 35W to the shore. But I don’t usually stick to a regiment like this, photographing the same place every time. 

Still, it fascinates me.

The idea started scratching at me after I had read Sally Mann’s book ‘Hold Still‘. This is still one of my favorites of the biographies I have read recently. She describes a project she was working on, photographing deep parts of the south, loading up her station wagon with wet plate collodion chemistry and her large format camera, and just driving until she found what she was looking for. That very idea calls to me, and every day it takes a lot of will power to drive myself to work instead of driving out into the wilderness in search of photos. 

In some ways, this project is a baby step towards that. A project that keeps me going out and coming back at a regular frequency. Something with just enough structure to keep me grounded, but plenty of room for freedom. 

Stay tuned. I’ll share more images from this project soon.

Thanks for sticking around. You’ll hear a lot more from me now.