Sunday, February 03, 2008

Bob Keefer - Photography with Style

"Bob Keefer is a writer, photographer and artist in Creswell, Oregon.

I make hand-colored black and white photographs the traditional way, with film cameras and old-fashioned darkroom prints colored entirely with a brush and paint — no PhotoShop involved."

I love the way Bob can emphasize an aspect of a photograph with this technique. From the tuba in a marching band to the eyes of an owl, browsing through Bob's excellent website is like taking a journey into two worlds at the same time.

One is a world of hand colored tintypes drenched in tradition. Time faded and rich looking images that give me the illusion of the past captured by Louis Daguerre on one of the first cameras then given life through Bob's sharp state of the art skill and sense of understated color.

The other world is one of discovery in seeing parts our world for the first time. There is a wonderful image on his site of a simple crude brick wall declaring a religious festival that takes me back to some of the visits I had to Puerto Vallarta in October and image of the Zabriskie Badlands of Death Valley that takes your breath away.

In an excerpt from his page Bob explains
"I’ve been painting and hand coloring black and white photographs for years, enjoying the artistic tenstion between the cool, machine-like precision of photography and the expressiveness of added color. I work with a variety of colored mediums, sometimes coloring an image only lightly and sometimes nearly painting it completely out, so the original photograph barely shows through."

For a real treat visit Bob's Web Site where you may browse or purchase some of his wonderful art. It is a wonderful thing to see the marriage of photography and painting giving birth to art at it's best.


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