#Blogtour – Behind-the-Scenes Look at ‘Seizing the Bygone Light: A Tribute to Early Photography’

Welcome to Day 3 of the Seizing the Bygone Light blog tour hosted by WordCrafter Book Blog Tours.

Welcome to the talented David Ellis, Cendrine Marrouat and Hadiya Ali with their new book Seizing the Bygone Light: A Tribute to Early Photography.

PoArtMo Collective started as FPoint Collective, a group of photographers. When we recently relaunched, we decided that it was time to welcome a larger diversity of artists.

Our passion for photography is still there, though. And while some of us are professional digital photographers, we are all indebted to the pioneering days of the art form, a time when documenting the minutiae of everyday life was the norm.

In 2020, we wondered how we could pay tribute to those old days through a multimedia project involving three artists, digital images, and poetry. The concept would be challenging, but we knew we could achieve something unique.

We decided to divide the book into three parts. In part 1, Hadiya Ali would “recreate” the timeless photographic styles of photography masters Irving Penn and Karl Blossfeldt. Part 2 would feature some of Cendrine Marrouat’s reminigrams, a type of digital image that she invented years ago. Finally, in part 3, David Ellis would share a series of pareiku poems (Cendrine’ and David’s visual poetry form); each piece would be inspired by archival images.

Today, we would like to share a behind-the-scenes look at how each one of us worked on his or her part of the project.

Hadiya Ali (Part 1 – Old School)

It did not take me long to settle on Karl Blossfeldt to recreate something from the 19th century. His pictures looked uncomplicated and beautiful at first sight. The real task began when I realized that plants of that era do not exist anymore. So, to achieve something as unique as Karl’s work, I started observing ordinary plants. This brought me closer to nature than I would have ever imagined. By the time I was done, I realized that capturing the intricate beauty of plants up close had allowed me to create my own masterpieces.

Having explored one aspect of nature, I now wanted to experience another. This time, it would be from the 20th century and the focus would be on my favorite type of photography—portraits. Irving Penn’s work caught my eye for inexplicable reasons. Unfortunately, the props used in his images are not as widely available as they were back in his days. I started making my own props out of paints, old clothes, brushes, and crepe papers, and combined them together. Penn’s majestic art is exceptional and I hope my images do a little justice in capturing the raw essence of his work.

Cendrine Marrouat (Part 2 – Reimagining the Past)

I fell in love with old photography long before becoming a photographer. I spent countless hours looking at daguerreotypes, tintypes, ambrotypes, or albumen silver prints, reveling in the timelessness of their scenes and sheer beauty of their imperfections. This led me to want to pay homage to those photographic processes, while taking advantage of modern technology. My reminigrams (a combination of ‘reminiscence’ and ‘-gram’) are a result of it.

Reminigrams seek to capture scenes that could have existed in the past. As such, they are a perfect fit for a project like Seizing the Bygone Light: A Tribute to Early Photography.

My initial focus for the book was to pick images that would complement part 1. However, going through my reminigrams made me understand that I was looking at things the wrong way. Old photography had always been an emotional, almost cathartic experience for me. As such, I decided the selection process should be about the images that made my heart skip a beat more than the rest.

As it turns out, my choices gelled extremely well with the rest of the book.

David Ellis (Part 3 – The Vintage Muse: Pareiku and Haibun Poetry)

I originally came at this project from the angle that I have a huge fondness for the black and white films of the past, in particular The Marx Brothers and Harold Lloyd. Their ingenuity transcends the age of the medium that they encapsulated, it really does not bother me at all that their antics are displayed in black and white rather than colour. To me, this just adds massively to the charm that is on display in the way things are framed, the way they are executed, the stories that are told. They allow me to focus my mind firmly on the finer details, intricate layers that reward repeat viewing.

What drove me to selecting the images that I ultimately used as inspiration for my poetic section of this book was fundamentally to find intriguing vintage photographs that had an air of mystery about them and to let my own subconscious make the subtle connections between them. It is human nature to find connections or patterns in everything that we encounter in our lives, whether they exist in plain sight or not.

Pareiku poetry thrives on the use of images that ask the viewer to think about what sort of connections they could make with the material themselves, it is all a matter of perspective. You just have to find the glowing thread that appeals to your own sensibilities and pull it until you unravel enough of the magic that truly means something to you.

We hope that you enjoyed this behind-the-scenes look, and we cannot wait to read your reviews!

The Blurb

he medium of limitless possibilities that is photography has been with us for almost 200 years.

Despite its great advancements, its early days still influence and dazzle a majority of professional photographers and artists. Such is the case of Cendrine Marrouat, Hadiya Ali and David Ellis, three members of the PoArtMo Collective.

he result? ​Seizing the Bygone Light: A Tribute to Early Photography​ . This unique collection of artistic styles brings together different innovative concepts of both gripping writing and stunning visual imagery.

In the first part of the book, photographer and painter Ali introduces us to two of her favorite photographers by reimagining and recreating images in the nature of her photographic idols — Irving Penn and Karl Blossfeldt.

In the second part, photographer, poet, and author Marrouat shares a selection of her reminigrams, a digital style that she personally created to honor and pay homage to the early days of photography.

Author and poet Ellis rounds things off with a series of pareiku poems (the poetry form he co-created with Marrouat), offering fresh outlooks for his sincere, heartfelt adoration of photography of the past.

A fascinating and compelling book, ​Seizing the Bygone Light: A Tribute to Early Photography​ will leave you with a deep sense of appreciation and a greater understanding of photography.

Book details

Title: Seizing the Bygone Light: A Tribute to Early Photography

Format: ebook – Release date: March 16, 2021 

Availability: All major online bookstores, including Amazon, Kobo, Apple, and Barnes & Noble. 

Website: https://abpoetryjournal.com/seizing-bygone-light

Purchase link: https://books2read.com/seizing-bygone-light 

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uiIWOr0Y36Y

About the authors

Cendrine Marrouat​

Cendrine Marrouat​ is a French-born Canadian photographer, poet, and the multi-genre author of more than 30 books. In 2019, she co-founded the PoArtMo Collective with Isabel Nolasco, and Auroras & Blossoms with David Ellis. A year later, Ellis and she launched PoArtMo (Positive Art Month and Positive Art Moves) and created the Kindku / Pareiku, two forms of poetry. Cendrine is also the creator of another poetry form (the Sixku) and a type of digital image (the Reminigram).

Cendrine writes both in French and English and has worked in many different fields in her 17-year career, including translation, language instruction, journalism, art reviews, and social media.

Latest books:

  • Rhythm Flourishing: A Collection of Kindku and Sixku
  • When the Mind Travels: A Poetic Journey
  • The Heart of Space
  • Bad. Pitches. Period. 30 Flavors of Spammy Emails
  • Songs in Our Paths: Haiku & Photography (Volume 1)
  • Walks: A Collection of Haiku (All the Volumes and More!)
  • Blog Your Way to Success: 35+ No-Nonsense Tips for Authors and Writers
  • The Little Big eBook on Social Media audiences: Build Yours, Keep It, and Win (Second edition)

David Ellis

David Ellis lives in Tunbridge Wells, Kent in the UK. He is an award-winning poet, author of poetry, marketing workbooks/journals, humorous fiction and music lyrics. He is also a co-author and co-founder of Auroras & Blossoms, and the co-creator of PoArtMo (Positive Art Month and Positive Art Moves) and the Kindku / Pareiku.

David’s debut poetry collection (Life, Sex & Death) won an International Award in the Readers’ Favorite Book Awards 2016 for Inspirational Poetry Books.

David is extremely fond of tea, classic and contemporary poetry, cats, and dogs but not snakes. Indiana Jones is his spirit animal.

Latest books:

  • Rhythm Flourishing: A Collection of Kindku and Sixku
  • 50 Shapes of Cakes: A Fifty Shades of Erotic Bakery Parody
  • A Little Bit Of What You Fancy: A Short Story Collection (Vol 1)
  • Appearing With Majesty: Found Poetry Inspired by William Shakespeare’s Sonnets
  • Lemons, Vinegar & Unvarnished Truths
  • Life, Sex & Death: A Poetry Collection
  • Positive Belief – A Better You Awaits
  • See A Dream Within: Found ‘Poe’try Based On The Collected Poetry Works Of Edgar Allan Poe
  • Soul Music The Colour Of Magic

Hadiya Ali​

Hadiya Ali​ is a 19-year-old Pakistan-born artist who now lives in Oman. A keen observer of people, she noticed at a very young age how talented market workers were at what they did – but that they seemed unaware of their own talent. So she decided to capture their stories with her camera. Before she knew it, her project had attracted attention and she had been booked for her first professional photoshoots, suddenly realizing that she, too, had been unaware of her own talent all this time.

Hadiya works on projects that capture unique stories and themes. Some of her photography is featured in ​The Auroras & Blossoms PoArtMo Anthology: 2020 Edition.

Cendrine and David co-founded Auroras & Blossoms in 2019. This platform is dedicated to promoting positive, uplifting and inspirational art; and giving artists of all levels a platform where they can showcase their work and build their publishing credits.

Auroras & Blossoms features a magazine (​Auroras & Blossoms Creative Literary Journal​ ), an artistic movement (PoArtMo), a monthly show, and marketing/promotional books to help writers and authors at every level of their careers.


  • The Auroras & Blossoms PoArtMo Anthology: 2020 Edition
  • The Auroras & Blossoms NaPoWriMo Anthology: 2020 Edition
  • 30 Creative Prompts to Take Your Art to the Next Level
  • My Positivity Journal: 100 Action Verbs and Affirmations for Daily Inspiration
  • My Twitter Workbook: 20 Tips to Get Noticed and Followed
  • My Poetry Workbook: 20 Tips to Write Great Poems
  • My Creative Journal: 40 Prompts to Take Your Writing to the Next Level!
  • My Marketing Workbook: Promotional Tips For Poets

Together, Cendrine, David, and Hadiya comprise ​PoArtMo Collective​, an artist collective dedicated to creating and releasing inspirational and positive projects.

Latest Book:

  • Photography of Life and Living: The Black and White Book ​ (Cendrine Marrouat and Isabel Nolasco)

Contact information

Website: ​https://abpoetryjournal.com
Media inquiries: Cendrine Marrouat / David Ellis – info@abpoetryjournal.com
Facebook: ​https://www.facebook.com/abpoetryjournal
Twitter: ​http://twitter.com/BlossomsPoetry
Instagram: ​http://instagram.com/abpoetryjournal
YouTube: ​https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCkAh-EnwcJbd865SEXJQsEw

Tour information

3/15 – Writing to be Read – Intro.

3/16 – Pictures from the Kitchen – Interview

3/17 – Robbie’s Inspiration – Author generated

3/18 – Writing to be Read – Review


83 thoughts on “#Blogtour – Behind-the-Scenes Look at ‘Seizing the Bygone Light: A Tribute to Early Photography’

    1. TY Toni, we are so happy that you are interested in us as authors and our book as well. We certainly are inspirational and fun loving folks in our own right and we appreciate all of your kind support! 🙂 / David Ellis

      Liked by 3 people

    1. Ty Annika, you are absolutely right, it was deeply fascinating to merge these elements, they all sit very well together to provide a totally unique experience, there is a lot to savour, whether you are a fan of poetry, photography or both! We really appreciate your support and interest in our work 🙂 / David Ellis

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Hello Annika,

        I am responding as I have released photography books on my own and can give you information about costs related to visual books.

        While we would love to release print versions, this is not possible right now. Photography books, in particular, are very expensive affairs.

        A book our size would cost us at least several dozens of dollars to print. If we were to distribute it on a platform like Amazon, the company charges a 10% fee on top of the usual fee Blurb (the best POD platform for visual books) would charge. At the end of the day, to be able to pay the three of us, even minimally, for our work, the price per copy would be at least $45-$50. Most people will never consider paying so much, as they cannot afford it.

        Traditional publishers often sell photography books for a much cheaper price, because they have deals in place with printers. We are self-published and do not have that kind of budget.

        If we enough people ask for print copies, we might consider it. But from experience, I know it is very unlikely to happen.

        I hope this helps you understand our decision. 🙂

        Liked by 2 people

      2. That is a shame, Cendrine, but I understand. I have the same problem with my children’s books which contain photographs of my fondant creations; they are two expensive to be viable as print books. Never mind, I will get the ebook.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Yes, it is a shame, indeed, as coffee table books are a great addition to have at home! I have quite a few (Ansel Adams being my favorite photographer) that I cherish and often read.

        Thank you for your support, ladies!

        Liked by 2 people

  1. The title captured my interest because I have a visually minded family.

    As you know, my husband is an artist and often photographs lights and shadows. My son majored in photography in university and now is teaching it to high school students.

    This is a fantastic project and a wonderful blog post, Robbie!

    Liked by 4 people

    1. That is wonderful Marian, for any photography lovers (especially those into black and white photography) this is really going to rock their world and then some! We really appreciate your support and kind words regarding our work, I sincerely hope you and your family enjoy it! 🙂 / David Ellis

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Shoot, I wish you hadn’t asked that. OK, here goes. At risk of sounding uninformed, I had no idea there was any interest in old methods of photography. It was an engineering feat but I just didn’t think about it!

        Liked by 3 people

      2. Yes, the interest for old photography processes has never ceased. A while ago, I saw a video of a man who still shoots with a 100-year-old camera. And daguerreotypes, ambrotypes, and cyanotypes have thousands of professional practitioners around the world.

        Liked by 5 people

    1. TY for commenting and your kind words Jacqui! I find the most fun part of the interaction between authors is when they find out intriguing new information from them. We try to be as approachable and honest as possible because you never know what exciting new journey you will be taken on. Appreciate your support of us and our work 🙂 / David Ellis

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Thank you so much for hosting this guest post and supporting the tour, Robbie. And thanks to Cendrine Marrouat, David Ellis and Hadiya Ali for the very informative post. It really is a wonderful project with some truly awesome results. It’s wonderful to learn so much about it here. 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Reblogged this on Writing to be Read and commented:
    Day #3 of the WordCrafter “Seizing the Bygone Light” Book Blog Tour finds a guest post from the authors, Cendrine Marrouat, David Ellis and Hadiya Ali to tell us more about this amazing collection on “Robbie’s Inspiration”, hosted by Robbie Cheadle. Please join us in supporting these authors in their ambitious efforts to pay historical tribute.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. So happy to hear this Dorothy and thank you too for sharing your experiences with black and white photography. It is very exhilarating to hear other people talk of the photography of the past too in such a fond and professional manner, we can all learn a lot from each other 🙂 / David Ellis

      Liked by 3 people

  4. Hi Robbie,
    It is astounding how some areas of art have opened up because of Internet technology which connects us to each other. It is an interesting project. I too love photography and actually learned how to develop pictures in the days of old before the self developing technique was discovered.
    Shalom aleichem

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Hi Pat, TY ever so much with your interest in our work and also your sharing your of passion regarding your own photography endeavours, we are especially keen to hear about them and we welcome all of your support! / David Ellis

      Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you, Liz! It is! I am used to multimedia projects, since I often mix my poetry and my photography. But this particular book is unique. I have never seen it done before. So we are very excited to read reviews from readers. We have more ideas for multimedia projects that really highlight the talents of the artists in our collective. Our Auroras & Blossoms anthologies also follow the same kind of idea.

      Liked by 3 people

    2. TY very much Liz! This project is exhilarating on many levels, I adore how it shines a modern light on techniques of the past, giving you plenty to think about once you have appreciated what we included in the book. Photography and poetry really do go well together! 🙂 / David Ellis

      Liked by 2 people

    1. TY for stopping by and taking an interest in our work Olga 🙂 The past has plenty for us to appreciate if we take the time to look for it, it’s a treasure trove of inspiration just waiting to be found. Glad to hear that you also have a passion for old photography as well, that’s wonderful! 🙂 / David Ellis

      Liked by 2 people

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