Drive up to an American Motel in California with blue sky and palm trees.

Contact sheets from California and Nevada

February 27, 2021

When I look through my contact sheets I love recording them on my iPhone, reappraising them and seeing the patterns emerging as I share them on Instagram. These pictures were take in Nevada in 2001 and in California in 2003, and yet have been overlooked until I posted them on Instagram in January 2021. I especially like how these two, one taken in the Salton Sea and one in Las Vegas look like they belong together as a pair. 

Mid-century architecture photography of an American Motel in California with blue sky and palm trees.
Colour photograph of Algiers Hotel in Las Vegas

On the second year I visited the Salton Sea, I began on the north shore of the Lake and travelled in a clockwise direction, the Motel Desert Shores was the last place I explored of the Salton Sea, but what a rich source of photographic possibilities. When I was there the year before the light was really hazy, and I only stopped at the north side for  a couple of hours photographing the Desert Beach. The pictures I took went on to be featured in an article in the the Independent when the media spotlight fell the Salton Sea due to the Val Kilmer film of the same name. I was so fortunate the second time I visited as there was no haze, instead a rich blue sky, perfect for my Agfa Ultra film. The authentic mid-century architecture of the faded motel made it an exciting subject, the popping red of the boards covering the windows create a living Mondrian disguising the true dereliction. The drive leading up to the motel flanked by palm trees recreates the cinematic vision of the American lifestyle. 

Richard Heeps photograph of the Salton Sea featured in the Independent newspaper.
Photograph of Motel in California

I was drawn to the Algiers Hotel in Las Vegas as it was noted for retaining its original design as built in 1953, shunning the modernisation of many other hotels on the strip such as valet parking, there you parked outside your room like they do in the movies. Sadly today it's gone and what stands in its place is generic high rise glass fronted skyscrapers so I am glad to have photographed there, captured it before it disappeared. This piece of architecture which so funnily shares the same roof line as the Motel Desert Shores is merely a functional bit round the back but there's certainly something interesting about the structural lines and technicolour of the Agfa Ultra film in the Las Vegas heat. 

American flag painted car by the pool at a motel.
Agfa Ultra contact sheet from Richard Heeps negative files.


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Size Guide & Artwork Description

Sizes may vary slightly from image to image as we make each composition from the negative individually, either showing Richard's signature ragged edge (white border) as he prints full frame or showing the film rebate (black border) often showing the film make. Where the image size varies we adjust the window mount in order to maintain a frame size so like for like sizes can hang together.

 

Format Stated Photographic Size Image Size cm Image Size Inches Mounted Size mm Mounted Size Inches Framed Size cm Framed Size Inches Price Unframed

Price Framed+AR70

Rectangle 6x9 or 35mm

9.5''x12'' 17.5x27cm 7''x10.25'' 380x380 15''x15'' 41x41x3.5cm 16''x16''x1.5'' £75 £125 + £20 

Rectangle 6x7

9.5''x12'' 21.5x26cm 8.5''x10.25'' 380x380 15''x15'' 41x41x3.5cm 16''x16''x1.5'' £75 £125 + £20

Square

9.5''x9.5'' 21.5x21.5cm 8.5''x8.5'' 380x380 15''x15'' 41x41x3.5cm 16''x16''x1.5'' £75 £125 + £20
no text

Rectangle 6x9 or 35mm

11''x16.5'' 28x44.5cm 11''x16.5'' 380x518 15''x20.5'' 41x54x3.5cm 16''x21.5''x1.5'' £100 £150 + £30
Rectangle 6x7 11''x13.5'' 28x34cm 11''x13.5'' 380x445 15''x17.75'' 41x47x3.5cm 16''x18.5''x1.5'' £100 £150 + £30
Square 11''x11'' 28x28cm 11''x11'' 380x380 15''x15'' 41x41x3.5cm 16''x16''x1.5'' £100 £150 + £30
Tape 11''x17.5'' 28x45cm 11''x17.5'' 380x550 15''x21.75'' 41x57x3.5cm 16''x22.5''x1.5'' £100 £150 + £30
no text
Rectangle 6x9 or 35mm 16''x20'' 34x51cm 13.5''x20'' 525x660 20.5''x26'' 55x70cm
Bx3.5cm
Wx5cm
21.5''x27.5''
B x1.5''
Wx3''
£180 £260 + £50
Rectangle 6x7 16''x20'' 42x51cm 16.5''x20'' 584x660 23''x26'' 60x70cm
Bx3.5cm
Wx5cm
24''x27.5''
Bx1.5''
Wx3''
£180 £260 + £50
Square RH 16''x20'' 45x45cm 18''x18'' 584x584 23''x23'' 60x60cm
Bx3.5cm
Wx5cm
24''x24''
Bx1.5''
Wx3''
£180 £260 + £50
Square HH + Space 20''x20'' 48x48cm 19''x19'' 584x584 23''x23'' 60x60cm
Bx3.5cm
Wx5cm
24''x24''
Bx1.5''
Wx3''
£270 £350 + £50
no text
Tape 43x59cm 17''x25'' 525x750 20.5''x29.5'' 55x77cm
Bx3.5cm
Wx5cm
22''x30.5''
Bx1.5''
Wx3''
£200 £295 + £70
no text
Rectangle
6x9 or 35mm
20''x24'' 39x58cm 15.5''x23'' 575x735 22.75''x29'' 60x77x5cm 23.5''x30.5''x5'' £300 £395 + £70
Rectangle
6x7
20''x24'' 48x60cm 19''x23.75'' 635x735 25''x29'' 67x77x5cm 26.5''x30.5''x5'' £300 £395 + £70
Square 24''x24'' 61x61cm 24''x24'' 735x735 29''x29'' 77x77x5cm 30.5''x30.5''x5'' £400 £495 + £70
Vinyl 27''x27'' 73x73cm 25''x25'' 735x735 29''x29'' 77x77x5cm 30.5''x30.5''x5'' £400 £495 + £70
no text
Rectangle
6x9 or 35mm
30''x40'' 61x93cm 24''x36.5'' 818x1090 32''x42'' 85x112x5cm 33.5''x44'x5'' £445 £595 + £105
Rectangle 6x7 30''x40'' 61x75cm 24''x30'' 818x970 32''x38'' 85x100x5cm 33.5''x39''x5'' £445 £595 + £105
Tape 30''x40'' 60x94cm 23''x37'' 777x1090 30.5''x42'' 80x112x5cm 31.5''x44''x5'' £445 £595 + £105
notext
Rectangle 6x9 or 35mm 40''x50'' 76x109cm 30''x43'' 940x1280 37''x50'' 98x130x5cm 39''x51''x5'' £895 £1095 + £200
Rectangle 6x7 40'' x 50'' 76x94cm 30''x37'' 940x1120 37''x44'' 98x115x5cm 39''x45.5''x5'' £895 £1095 + £200
Square 40''x40'' 76x76cm 30''x30'' 940x940 37''x37 98x98x5cm 39''x39''x5'' £895 £1095 + £200

 

Artwork Description 

Richard makes the c-type prints from negative in his own analogue colour darkroom in Cambridge. His paper of choice is Kodak Professional Endura Premier Gloss. When Richard has chosen to evolve the artwork, we work with Streamline Colour Lab. In our studio the print is dry-mounted to dibond which ensures a very flat image surface in both the short and long term. The prints are matted (window mounted) using a museum quality 100% cotton rag board especially manufactured to be compatible with the C-type archival Kodak photographic paper Richard uses. Richard does all mounting himself, using his precision engineering background to create the finished artwork. Eleanor fits the artworks to the frames. Traditionally photographic prints are signed and numbered on the back, accompanied by a certificate of authenticity. They can be signed on the front of the mount by request. If you would like us to make a larger artwork that is possible, the sizes listed are the largest we can make in our darkroom but we can go larger with our printing partners so please get in touch to discuss it.

Framing Description  

Our frames are hand-made in the UK by Menor Photographic Fine Art Printing & Framing Specialists in Hertfordshire. We offer a choice of black or white wooden box frames which have depth to suit the size of the picture, the artwork set back from the glass. Our black frames are made from matt ebony stained obeche, in which you can see the detail of the wood grain whereas our white frames are made from beech and the wood grain is not visible. The wood is sustainably forested for both variations of frame. Artglass AR 70™ is a premium anti-reflective glass used by the finest museums around the world. If you would like to present you artwork in another way, we offer the choice to buy an unframed print only and can advise you on other options or recommend reputable companies to carry out the work.