“I wanted the book to be like an interior design magazine, but with more pages and more images. Normally, a beautiful interior design story is only six pages, and you really don’t get enough. So I wanted 20 pages of these houses, and I also wanted really tight, detailed shots. There’s a lot of text in the book [written by Michael Owen Gotkin] and you can learn a lot by reading it, but that wasn’t an essential goal of mine. Through photography, I wanted to give people a perspective on these houses. Yes, you could visit them, and maybe you can’t, but you’ll never see them in the way that I photographed them. I shoot in natural light. I shoot the way the house looks. I don’t bring in massive amounts of equipment. I shot the whole book on negative film with long exposures. I painfully tried to create a sense of romance and nostalgia—and silence.”
-Photographer Don Freeman, speaking with us about his new book Artists’ Handmade Houses (Abrams), a collection of 13 homes handcrafted by artists and craftsmen including George Nakashima, Sam Maloof, Wharton Esherick, and Russel Wright.