Around the years 1995-2000 I lived in the Belmont (Sunnyside) area of Portland, Oregon. At that time and in that neighborhood, you could disappear. This was before PDX was self-aware and still hanging on to Grunge just a bit, unironically.
I could walk down to the corner for coffee on a Thursday evening and see Kelly Joe Phelps sitting there playing his guitar on a stool with a tip jar. I made a couple of records in the same original studio where Elliott Smith did his first couple of records, and we borrowed his snare drum. On my birthday a couple friends took me up the street to see James McMurtry at a dive bar and I stood right in front of him when he played “Too Long In The Wasteland.”
I lived alone and went to grad school. I bought a Holga camera and carried it around when I walked up and down Belmont Street. I had a friend with a darkroom who showed me how to do some rudimentary developing.
I recently found a bunch of contact sheets from that period. They were in a black binder with a sticker on the front that says “The Belmont Project.” So I scanned the contact sheets, ran them through Photoshop, zoomed in on a bunch of singles, did some dodging and burning, and made these.
Enjoy this first set of recovered photos from The Belmont Project.