Sunset, Valley of the Little Bighorn

Sunset, Valley of the Little Bighorn

20×24 prints are $1,500
30×40 prints are $3,000

In 1994 Ruth and I went on a two month photo trip across the USA. On September 22 we found ourselves in southeastern Montana and decided to visit the Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument. It was a sad, rather forlorn place and quite sobering. So peaceful now, so tragic years ago. Rolling hills that dissolve into the great plains area with near constant wind blowing across the dried grasses.

I had only made one photograph earlier that day, of dried cattails that didn’t amount to much. The landscape was monochromatic with few trees or hills, difficult subject matter for me to work with. However, as the sun was setting I could see that the low hills were coming alive with shadows and forms.

Ruth and I quickly set up the 8×10 camera and as usual, Ruth helped me as I made the view camera adjustments and focused it. I used the tilting front to align the plane of focus on the hills but it was still tricky to get enough depth of field throughout the entire image. I used my Goerz 30” Red Dot Artar lens at f/32 for 1/2 second on Fujichrome 100 transparency film.

The color palette of the Cibachrome prints is muted and delicate. The edge lighting defines the shapes and forms of the hills as they gently recede until they reach the far plains in the distance. To me it is a peaceful, contemplative image that has a timeless quality, like memories of profound experiences which shape and mold our hearts and souls.

Format: Large (horizontal)
Location: Montana
Reference key: svlb