I've always been passionate about old photos, and have collected them for years. It was after inheriting a very large collection of family photographs and memorabilia that my passion for collecting expanded into photo restoration and preservation.
Some of those family photographs were well over one hundred years old and remarkably well-preserved. Some much younger photographs had fared quite badly. I was puzzled about this and began researching photo restoration techniques, and the causes of deterioration, in order to save them.
Using a high-quality scanner and digital photo software, I restored these precious photographs, which are now safely and permanently archived and backed up on my computer and other devices, virtually immune to further deterioration.
The original photographs were organized, labeled and properly stored using archival methods and materials, so that when I pass them on, they can be enjoyed for generations to come.
I now offer digital photo restoration services to others. If you would like to find out more about this, please click the Personal History tab.
Photo Restoration as an Art Form
I've been an artist since approximately age six, when I participated in an elementary school art show. I didn't graduate from a prestigious art school, but I still hesitate to use the word "self-taught" (we've all had teachers.) However, I have learned my art mostly via solitary exploration, observation, imitation, trial and error.
As a professional ceramic artist for more than twenty-five years, I learned to love clay for its infinite possibilities of shape, texture, color, and (not least of all) for its rich, earthy smell! I'm also a passionate nature photographer. The beauty and grace of nature in all forms is what moves me.
Oil painting is a marriage of sorts between my love of clay and photography. Like photography, painting captures and freezes a moment in time -- a fleeting expression, or an abstract impression. Like clay, painting is fluid and expressive, with endless possibilities of form, expression and color.
My painting style is abstract realism. My favorite subjects are still life paintings, animals and landscapes. My still still life paintings are nearly always created using old, found objects rich with character and patina, arranged to tell a visual story, and to compel the viewer pause, contemplate or tease out a hidden (or not so hidden) meaning from the arrangements. Sometimes a painting is simply a way for me to portray a "captured moment" of beauty, as I see it.
I particularly enjoy painting wild animals, and pets -- something I began doing when my dog Gracie passed away. For obvious reasons, I paint these types of portraits strictly from photographs. I prefer a stronger sense of realism when painting wild animals and pets, and aim to achieve a likeness as close as possible to the subject, with a strong emphasis on the eyes and body language, while still retaining a feeling of painterliness throughout.