All images by Troyce Hoffman. Used with permission.
“While Europe has thousands of years worth of ancient cities and temples, America has its great canyons, mountains, forests, and deserts; these are our great wonders,” says northern California based Photographer Troyce Hoffman. “They are the great equalizer in our country; they belong to both rich and poor serving as a vast communal backyard.” Troyce’s images are mostly shot in the public lands of the American West and he has worked to capture images of the American West using Kodak Tri-x for a while now.
According to Troyce, he sees this series as critically important due to our uncertain future. He specifically states it is “…imperative to understand how important they are to the American population and what a devastating loss it would be to have the purpose altered.”
You see, Troyce is a documentary photographer. And according to him:
“My journey began over a decade ago when I picked up a camera to satisfy a college art requirement. Shortly after, I quit school and took off to explore the world photographically. After five years of uncomfortable bus rides, bed bugs, and the same three shirts, Ie opted for a change of pace and moved to Truckee, California. Since moving to the mountains, the American West has been my subject of interest from the vineyards of wine country to the deserts of the Southwest.”
The project has been in the works for six years when Troyce was gifted a Holga. When he went West, he would bring the camera with him. Eventually it became one of his favorite cameras, citing that he only shot with it after a while. “The lack of control was incredibly liberating, no longer was I focused on gear in these wild places,” explains Troyce. “With its limitations I slowly found out what type of light, compositions, and landscapes worked best. All the photos are taken with Kodak Tri-X film with a red filter that is then push processed to ISO 1600, this combination I feel creates a very dramatic effect that conveys the raw and unforgiving nature of the land.”
Pretty crazy, right? Lots of photographers wouldn’t dare to take a Holga, perhaps because of its often poor build quality or for the fact that the photographer would want a different look. But Troyce’s photos surely prove any of those points pretty moot.