About Marvin Bowen

So you want to know about Marvin Bowen. Here is the photographic part of my story.

I’ve been taking pictures for a long time. Some of the earliest ones were awful. I didn’t know anything about what I was doing, but I so badly wanted to do it. I would shoot some flowers at crazy angles with my dads 35mm Minolta and think “These are going to be the coolest pictures ever!” Well, I still have those images, and they are truly terrible. I even thought so then.

Move on a few years to high school. I was given the opportunity to work on the yearbook my senior year. It began with a “test” of our photographic skills. Each interested person was given a disposable camera and told to make some good yearbook pictures. I passed, and was selected to serve. Well, that was about the end of my taking pictures for yearbook, but it got me interested and thinking about it. The next year as a freshman in college I enrolled for the Intro to Photography class at the local community college. What an utter joy! Fumbling around in the darkroom loading film on the the developing spool could not have been more enjoyable for me. Then, the magic moment when I printed my first image. Placing that blank piece of paper into the chemical bath and watching a picture materialize out of nothing was truly magical for me. I was in love.

Then I transferred to a different college. I had not yet chosen a major, but decided on Graphic Design. Sadly, there was no photo program there. My love had to wait. I then transferred again. This time I enrolled in Graphic Design and Photography degrees, with a minor in Business. Yup, I was busy. During that photo program I learned color photography (in the darkroom, not digital). Wow was that a challenge, but yet it was very rewarding too.

I then transferred to another university (I know, again). This time it was ALL about digital, and boy did I learn a lot. That education really carried me into a career path that I could not have otherwise achieved.

Since graduating college in 2005 I have been working in the commercial photography industry. Shooting for companies from Monaco (motor homes), Sur la Table, WalMart, Meijer and Amway Ribbon, I have done some pretty interesting photo shoots. From Michigan, to Indiana, to California, Atlanta and even Key West, Florida. It has been quite a journey. Now I am in the gorgeous (don’t tell anyone) state of Idaho, and really am not a part of the commercial photography world. This is really due to a lack of work more than a lack of desire. I will say that my first love of photography was turned into a bit of loathing when it became that thing I had to do, and had to do it someone else’s way. Now that I am again free to see and create simply for the joy of the image, I am falling in love all over again.

Welcome to my journey. Let’s see where it leads.

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