Kaitlyn Jo Smith Tamrin Ingram

4×5 – I

Two college seniors travel 1,280 miles across 6 states during their final spring break, March of 2016, 4×5 camera in tow, in an attempt to connect to their photo ancestors.

This past March, with only a few successfully exposed sheets under our belts, we packed up the 4×5 and drove off into the sunset. The goal was to learn and to grow as both people and artists. The thought being that if we went so far away, if we made it this big of a deal, then the stakes would be too high to fail. Success was our only option, and after a few horrid failures caused by silly mistakes and a questionable rubber band system to mark our exposed film, success is exactly what happened.

Check back each Monday, Wednesday and Friday for a different 4×5 and a new story from our Rocky Mountain excursion. We are so excited to finally (three months later) begin to share this labor of love with all of you. Enjoy!

Katie & Tamrin.


Driving through Rocky Mountain National Park I knew the photograph I wanted to make. I had this perfect vision in mind of a winding, wooded road billowing out, nestled between mountains with gentle shadows caressing the pavement. I realize this may be the epitome of cliche road trip pics but my soul needed to make this shot. There were several moments in which I shouted out to Katie to stop and as she hit the breaks I would decide almost instantly that this was actually not the shot we needed and she would patiently hit the gas and carry us onward. When we rounded the bend of this road I’m pretty sure that I didn’t even shout out words but more of a garbled together exclamation that translated into “Stop!” and the Corolla slowed, reversed, and parked. We got out of the car and I raced to the middle of the road, looking behind us and in front of us. “This is it,” I said and with a nod we unloaded the 4X5.


My recollection of the creation of this photograph is far less romantic than Tamrin’s. She composed it, all I did was pull the trigger. What I remember from this moment in time is her excitement and my slamming on the brakes to throw open the trunk and get to the 4×5. She set up the shot while I excitedly ran back and forth across the street squabbling like a high frequency chicken and paying little attention to what was happening. The image was made, the trunk was loaded and I got back behind the wheel and drove down the very road we had just captured.

Katie Jo


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