Thanks for poking around the Wide World of Alan. I hope you’ll enjoy the time you spend here reliving your favorite Blake Stage Company shows, finding photos from an event to grace your wall or scrapbook, or figuring out whether you want to hire me to shoot one of your own events.
I’m not unlike a lot of other photographers in the way I started down the path. Photography must be a genetic trait. Dad had a darkroom in the basement of his family’s home (but without running water like mine has how – but that’s a different story told on BathroomDarkroom.com) and spent a while as a pharmacist’s assistant, both of which obviously combined into a love of light, film, little bottles of chemicals and making beautiful images with them. I first got my hands on the family’s Instamatic 100 and them moved way up to a modern Instamatic X-35 and after that Dad’s Argus C3, before plunking down my own money for a Yashica TL Electro-X and later upgrading to the Nikon F2 that I was convinced would remove the separation between me and the working pro photographers.
Pretty soon after I got my hands on the Yashica, I found that there was at least enough money in photography to support the hobby when I started selling hand-developed and enlarged prints of my brother’s peewee hockey games. My craft expanded into football games and other sports for the high school newspaper and yearbook, the historic 1974 August Jam rock concert, NASCAR races, a friend’s wedding (nowhere near as fun as the races), and whatever else needed photographing.
Intervening years brought some all expense paid international photographic opportunities courtesy of the US Navy, a wonderful photogenic family, a point-and-shoot film camera and an early video camera to capture those family moments in full sound and motion. Those moments are still stacked up in a hundred or more unplayed videotapes just waiting for their chance to send our girls either into laughing fits or to sleep. One followed the other recently when I brought out the slides and projector from my childhood. The novelty of the first two trays and photos of me as a seven-year-old wore off and boredom set in.
The digital imaging revolution happened and I was able to use a lot of the real photography I had learned over the decades to create great images with these evolving cameras that have only recently become able to produce an image almost as rich and colorful as film. The playground, bike rides, Outdoor Ed and swim and gymnastics meets were great places to make action packed images. Being a dad and photographing our kids put me around other parents with their kids in the events, and I’m always humbled when a parent buys my work to put on the wall for posterity. Those photographs probably bring a lot more constant enjoyment than the little ones that go around online.
These days I’m blessed to be able to point my cameras at our Blake High School Stage Company three of four times a year, the gorgeous landscapes my friends at Kollins Landscaping create, an occasional wedding that I cover more as a journalist than a photographic artist, and whatever other events need photographing. Some of that work actually goes online or on walls; most of it stays stored for those rainy days when I’ll have time to sift through it, throw away the junk and do something with the rest.
Until that happens, enjoy what you see here and let me know if you have any events from which you need photos to grace your own walls.