Biography Jack Blair
I discovered the wonder of photography and the magic of the darkroom at the side of my brother, who was a professional photographer in the 1950's. I took my first step into the creative aspect of photography while I was living in England in the sixties. At that time I could only afford to work in black and white—a blessing, because it forced me to pay attention to composition and lighting. I won my first photographic contest in Manchester, UK, in 1968.
When living in England I spent considerable time doing street photography. That is a genre with which I want to again spend time.
Presently, I work out of my home in Cochrane, Alberta, exploring the landscape of the prairies, foothills, and mountains. I also make portraits and enjoy the challenge of photographing people in their normal environment. I have exhibited my work at more than twenty galleries and public art locations in Alberta and Saskatchewan since 2007.
Like many photographers, I have been influenced by photographic artists such as Ansel Adams, Brooks Jensen, and Guy Tal. I am also influenced by artists closer to home, namely, Bill Peters, Steve Speer, Darwin Wiggett, George Barr, and Royce Howland. I am inspired by painters such as Canadians Carol Evans, Curtis Golomb, and Pat Sullivan.
For many years I worked with film and practiced darkroom processing and printing, but I now work with digital capture and post processing. In order to have control over my final art product, I’ve taught myself much about digital printing via online courses and reading. I taught a digital photographic printing course with master printer Royce Howland at a seminar put on by The Camera Store in Calgary.
I’ve sold many of the prints from my exhibits and have donated prints to schools and not-for-profit organisations for their ‘silent auctions’.