Resplendent Leaves at Sunset
Resplendent Leaves at Sunset
Resplendent Leaves at Sunset
Resplendent Leaves at Sunset

Christopher Burkett

Resplendent Leaves at Sunset

Oregon, 2002

Original Cibachrome Photograph

Pristine condition

certified authentic
Add to Collection $4,000.00
Resplendent Leaves at Sunset
Resplendent Leaves at Sunset
Resplendent Leaves at Sunset
Resplendent Leaves at Sunset



Original Cibachrome photograph by Christopher Burkett, “Resplendent Leaves at Sunset, Oregon.” Individually handmade by Burkett from 6×6-format transparency film. Mounted on cotton rag Antique Rising Museum Board. Signed in pencil with title, date and edition number on verso.

The 40×40 inch Museum Edition is limited to 15. Due to the size and delicate nature of the artworks, they must be shipped directly to a professional framer of your choice. For clients in the Bay Area, we also offer framing and installation services. International shipping is also available upon request. Please for additional information.



“In 2002, we moved my photo studio and darkroom from Vernonia, Oregon to Milwaukie, Oregon. We purchased a neglected building, spent nine months renovating it and then in September moved all of the equipment and furnishings. It took one month to install and recalibrate the darkroom equipment, Kreonite processor and two Durst 8×10 color enlargers.

Obviously, that year we could not go on a fall photo trip across the county but I was highly motivated to do whatever photography I could on a day-by-day basis. So one bright non-windy day Ruth and I went to Crystal Springs Rhododendron Gardens only four miles from our new studio.

It was not busy there, being the middle of the week, and I only had my Hasselblad outfit with us. We spent about 2 hours looking for photos, but I just wasn’t finding anything that came together to make a strong image. The sun was starting to go down and rather dejectedly we decided to go return home.

Just as we started up the final exit ramp, the sun broke through the trees in the distance and illuminated this Sweet Gum tree, a special variety named Forest Flame. It certainly was at that moment I quickly pulled out my 205TCC Hasselblad with the 250mm Superachromat lens on it, set it up on the tripod and using the built in 1° spot meter was able to make three identical exposures of this scene as the light changed, the second one being the best. The special light was changing so quickly that within one minute of setting up the camera it was gone. I compose my photographic images completely intuitively, which worked well in this situation.

Since the sunlight was coming through a small opening in the trees about 100 yards beyond the tree, it cast extremely sharp, well defined shadows on the scene. This, combined with the blue light from the sky above, made a “perfect storm” of hot and cold light which intensified all the colors of the tree.

Our perception of color has as much to do with colors which are next to each other as it does with the technical measurement of color values. While one’s initial impression of this Cibachrome is that the colors are quite saturated, most are not. It is the color contrast of the lighting on the leaf colors which bring out the intensity.

Making this photograph in the darkroom requires a very precise overall color balance, to preserve this color contrast of every color and careful dodging and burning of each print to balance out the densities and bring everything into a cohesive whole. I’m always amazed when I study this Cibachrome at the juxtaposition of colors, shapes and tones.

It is as if a wild basket of autumn leaves were tossed into the air and as they came down they were photographed in perfect relationship to one another. We could try that a thousand times and never come up with the grace filled moment that we see here.”


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.