“My favorite experiences are traveling throughout North America in my RV Camper. I can pack more gear and have the ability to stop anywhere along the way to take a picture. When I wake up in my camper, I don’t have far to go to photograph the sunrise and spend the day afield. I can spend a few hours or a few days at the same location.”
WHAT INFLUENCED YOU TO PURSUE A CAREER IN PHOTOGRAPHY? WHAT DOES PHOTOGRAPHY MEAN TO YOU?
My father was a hobbyist photographer and I learned photography from him when I was a teenager. Of course, it was all film back then and I captured a lot of black/white because we could develop the negatives and make prints in the bathroom which we converted to a darkroom. Photography has come a long way but the principles are certainly the same. I had the opportunity to attend a lecture and meet Ansel Adams and my love and appreciation for landscape photography began. To be clear, photography is a side business for me. My career (what pays the bills) is in large-format color printing. My company, Triangle Reprographics, is my family business in Orlando where I’ve worked for 40 years. We print on inkjet printers up to 16 feet wide and make large wall murals from photographs and other graphic applications.
YOUR WORK HAS TAKEN YOU AROUND THE WORLD. TELL US ABOUT THAT!
I have traveled abroad to India, Katmandu, Poland, Prague, England, Wales, and Scotland. However, I think my favorite experiences are traveling throughout North America in my RV Camper. I can pack more gear and have the hability to stop anywhere along the way to take a picture. When I wake up in my camper, I don’t have far to go to photograph the sunrise and spend the day afield. I can spend a few hours or a few days at the same location. Last month I took my camera and RV on a 3,500 mile, 16 state journey making a big loop to New England and back.
WHY DID YOU CHOOSE SANFORD?
Sanford is my home. My great-grandparents moved here around 1910. My grandparents had their first date at the Princess Theatre before there was even sound at the theatre. My Grandfather, James Dunn was the Superintendent of Parks and Recreation for Sanford. Hewas responsible for building many of the parks in Sanford. Today there is a park in Sanford named after him. My grandmother Minnie-Bess Garner owned and operated two beauty salons in Sanford, one downtown on 2nd Street and another in the lobby of the Mayfair Inn. My great grandfather, Elmer Echols, moved to Sanford from Alabama around 1910 and started Echols Bedding Company. The main store was located where Cindy’s Dance is located now. I grew up on the St Johns River, hunting, fishing, and camping along its banks. After living most of my adult life in Orlando, I moved back to Sanford about ten years ago and own a home just a few doors down from where my grandparents lived for most of their lives.
WHAT DO YOU LIKE BEST ABOUT LIVING IN SANFORD AND DO YOU HAVE ANY FAVORITE MEMORIES THAT YOU’D LIKE TO SHARE?
I love taking pictures around Seminole County where I grew up. I enjoy exploring lakes, rivers, natural springs, and even in the cypress swamp where not too many would dare to venture. My photography allows me to share this beauty with people that may never see these natural resources and unique eco systems that Florida has to offer.
YOU WERE HONORED AS SEMINOLE COUNTY’S 2014 ARTIST OF THE YEAR. TELL ME ABOUT THAT.
This was absolutely an honor for it was unsolicited and I was quite humbled to learn that I was even nominated. I am currently working for Seminole County providing photographs to use for their social media and brochures. I have a large Facebook following of about 1,200 friends. The Comments and “Likes” on pictures I post inspire me to take more photos. I am currently working on a new project of high resolution images that can be expanded to large wall murals, plexiglass, and metal prints.