Azure Morning Clouds
Azure Morning Clouds
Azure Morning Clouds
Azure Morning Clouds

Christopher Burkett

Azure Morning Clouds

Colorado, 2003

Original Cibachrome Photograph

Pristine condition

certified authentic
Add to Collection $1,500.00
Azure Morning Clouds
Azure Morning Clouds
Azure Morning Clouds
Azure Morning Clouds



Original Cibachrome photograph individually handmade by Christopher Burkett from 6×6-format transparency film, mounted on cotton rag Antique Rising Museum Board. Signed in pencil on mount with title, date and edition number on mount verso.



“In 2003, my wife Ruth and I had a very successful photographic trip which included making many worthwhile photographs in Colorado. I rarely make cloud photographs – it has to be something very special to move it out of the cliche realm.

This photograph was made early one morning. We had been photographing near McClure Pass in Colorado and decided to check out another area of the state where there were reported to be some tasty groves of aspen trees. We had just driven over the summit of Berthoud Pass at 11,300 feet when I saw this cloud formation. I had Ruth pull the van over and park on the shoulder of the road.

I quickly set up my Hasselblad camera using my 300mm Tele-Superachromat lens. I focused very carefully and then made an exposure on Velvia 50 film at f/5.6, the sharpest aperture of this lens. Because of the clarity of the air at that high altitude and the extraordinary resolution and perfect color rendering of that lens, the film has amazing tonal separation and detail.

Since when using Cibachrome I always use special high-resolution Apo-EL-Nikkor lenses, the Cibachromes have great delicacy and fine detail. Making a Cibachrome is not easy, but it is possible to make ones that convey what inspired me to take the photograph.

An Orthodox priest I know visited my studio on the day I was making Cibachromes of this image. He gazed at the print for a while and then remarked, “Christopher, you’ve been photographing this world for quite a while but now I see you’ve photographed heaven.””


All Christopher Burkett photographs sold at Photography West are new and in pristine condition. HD videos of the individual piece you are purchasing are available upon request. For more information, please


Christopher Burkett has labored for over four decades to create what many regard as the most impeccable and luminous color photographs in the history of photography. Gifted with a contemplative spirit as well as painter’s eye, Burkett has an uncommon ability to capture the natural world in a manner that simultaneously reflects “the world behind the world” as Minor White and Paul Caponigro might have put it. And although Burkett has been compared by curators to American color landscape photographers Eliot Porter and Ernst Haas, whose genre of American landscape photography he extended, neither of them exclusively developed their own film, nor attempted the darkroom standard clearly in evidence upon viewing Burkett’s original Cibachromes.

christopher burkett in his darkroom


Cibachrome, also known as Ilfochrome, is among the most stable of all color photographic processes. The dyes reside within the emulsion layers, giving the photograph its characteristic color saturation. The base is a polyester triacetate, rather than fiber-based paper, which adds to the longevity. It was a positive-to-positive photographic process based on the Gasparcolor process, created in 1933 by Bela Gaspar, a Hungarian chemist. Purchased after the merger of Ilford UK and Ciba-Geigy Photochemie of Switzerland, the process was first trademarked and marketed as Cibachrome in 1963. Each Cibachrome is composed of ten layers containing various combinations of light-sensitive silver halides and dyes that are sensitive to blue, green, or red light waves, which gives it an incredible depth and three-dimensional quality. After exposure of a positive, either through an enlarger or direct contact, the Cibachrome must be developed with black-and-white developing chemicals. This step creates a silver negative image within the layers. Next, the photograph must be bleached. The bleaching rids the photograph of dyes in proportion to the amount of silver that has been developed in the previous step and produces a positive dye image in color. In 2011, Cibachrome/Ilfochrome products were discontinued and it is now considered a historical process.