Campbell Salgado Studio Goes Green

- Sellwood-based Photographer Makes Portraits and Studio Kinder to the Planet -

PORTLAND, OR When one thinks of photography, certain colors jump to mind – sepia, or black and white, for example. But Kim Campbell, photographer and owner of Sellwood’s Campbell Salgado Studio, wants people to start thinking “green”…as in kind to the planet.

Campbell explains, “For years, I’ve made an effort to be environmentally-conscious in my day to day life, but then one day realized I hadn’t carried that effort over into my business as much as I could have. The more changes I implemented at the studio, the more I was certain a market existed for ecologically-friendly alternatives in portraiture. But as I looked around, no one else seemed to be offering what I had in mind. So, I figured why not me?”

Campbell and her husband, photographer/sculptor Francisco Salgado, made the switch from film to digital photography several years ago. Unlike darkroom photography, digital photography is somewhat intrinsically eco-friendly in that there’s no wasted film, and no toxic chemicals used in the print-making process. But going digital was only the first step. Soon Campbell and Salgado had committed to only using 100 percent cotton mats for their portraits. While mats made from recycled paper do exist, they are not typically recommended for archival preservation. So while searching for an environmentally-sound alternative that would protect clients’ precious family photos, Campbell discovered a tree-free option safe for all types of media, including photographic prints. Made from annually renewable cotton fibers, Crescent Cotton RagMats have the extra added bonus of being one of the highest quality archival matboards available.

Campbell also made the choice to carry Roma Moulding frames. While many frames on the market are made in China from questionable materials, Roma Moulding is the only moulding manufacturer that still handcrafts all of its wood mouldings in Italy. Free of lead contamination, their mouldings are made of FSC certified woods, and are wrapped in 100-percent biodegradable packaging.

Says Campbell, “I’m always on the lookout for new environmentally-friendly products. Lately I’ve been experimenting with Red River’s GreenPix photo paper, which is made of 100% post-consumer recycled content. And I just read about new petroleum-free soy ink cartridges which are coming out next year. I’m anxious to see how they work, and hope to be able to use them in the printmaking process, if the results are of the same high quality my customers have come to expect over the past 13 years.”

Portraiture isn’t the only environmentally-friendly offering at Campbell Salgado Studio, however. Campbell has also made an effort to transform the way she conducts business. For example, Campbell Salgado Studio now presents client proofs via digital multi-media presentations, eliminating much of the waste related to printed proofs. They also produce a digital newsletter and publish a blog, keeping customers up to date on the studio’s latest offerings while eliminating paper waste from mass newsletter mailings.

Campbell has also made efforts to reduce waste around the office. First she implemented an in-studio recycling program – employees now recycle all paper, cans/bottles, packing materials and matboard scrap. The studio also made the switch from bottled water to filtered water, eliminating bottle waste. Additionally, CFL bulbs illuminate the studio’s production areas, and a digital thermostat reduces the amount of energy wasted heating and cooling the studio in the off-hours.

In 2005, when Campbell Salgado Studio moved to its current location, Campbell envisioned establishing a lush outdoor portrait garden that would be as efficient as it was lovely. She began by removing many of the existing backyard plants, but rather than dumping them in the compost pile, she replanted them in the studio’s front yard. Bricks left behind by a previous owner were used to create a welcoming patio. Wood found under the front porch was fashioned into a decorative garden door. Low voltage outdoor lighting was installed on a timer, ensuring that landscape lighting is used for only a few hours each evening. Campbell now keeps the garden looking its best with the help of an efficient drip irrigation system, set on a timer, which keeps water usage to a minimum. And during the warmer months, Campbell and her husband conduct photo sessions in the garden. Taking advantage of the abundant natural light allows them to turn off the bright studio lights, and consume less energy as a business.

“Every day I’m privileged to gaze upon the innocent expressions of children, and experience their ease at finding joy in simple moments,” explains Campbell. “I want to do my part in handing the next generation a beautiful planet.”

About Campbell Salgado Studio: Husband and wife team Francisco Salgado and Kim Campbell joined forces professionally in 1995 to create Campbell Salgado Studio, a trend-setting Oregon-based photography studio with an international clientèle. Situated in a lovingly restored 1908 building with an attached portrait garden, Campbell Salgado Studio helps families record the special moments of their lives through breathtakingly beautiful and original photography. Visit to learn more.



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