Let’s start off by saying I am not a writer, just a photographer. I started my journey as a photographer late in high school. I signed up for my first photography class with Rick Boysen my junior year. Our darkroom was located in a tiny closet in the area where shop class was held. (It was the worst place you could have darkroom).
I started off as any high school photo student would. I was given a beat up 35mm SLR and a couple rolls of bulk rolled 35mm black and white film. See this was supposed to be an easy A and be done. Well, it was more than just a class. Mr. Boysen noticed something in my photography and for some reason I thought that this just might be my thing. I finished that class with my instructor and others telling me I had this “thing” with photography. I didn’t know what that “thing” was or even know what it is today. I moved on from that basic photography course knowing that I enjoyed it but had no clue where it would go.
I was always a creative individual growing up. I guess I inherited those genes from my mother and others in my family. I really started off drawing in fourth grade. I would rather sit and draw than work on my math in class. I looked forward to only one one class. That just happened to be Art.
Back to the photography. I was taking drawing and watercolorwith Ted Mallory my high school art instructor. He can be a very convincing and persistent person to get you to take art courses. It should no surprise that he talked me into joining yearbook as the only male staff member and later becoming the Photo Editor. Ted Mallory and Mary Koenig encouraged me to pursue photography.
Mary Koenig believed in me so much she went to the trouble and contacted the Dunlap Reporter my local home town newspaper. Butch Walker was the editor/owner of the paper along with his lovely wife Diane. Some how they trusted me to photograph high school basketball. Once again I was given two rolls of black and white film and went and did my “thing”. This started me on a journey that has given lots of exciting moments.
I’ve had the chance to photograph presidential candidates,freelance for a another small newspaper, travel to Alaska and the list goes on. All because a small group of people believed in me. Even at times when I didn’t believe in my work as a photographer or felt that I was good. There are still times I think is my work good enough.
Ansel Adams said ““You don’t take a photograph, you make it.” It’s a very true statement. There is so much that goes into a photograph. The knowledge that I was taught by Mr. Mallory and other instructors through college, mistakes that I made on other images, gear limitations and the list goes on.
I’ve compiled twelve of my favorite images from Iowathat I am naming “Our Iowa”. I have been given so much by so many on my journey as a photographer. Ted Mallory has been the silent cheerleader (no pun intended,he is the cheerleader coach) all these years. Always commenting and shares my images. My “Our Iowa” collection is giving back to the person who has encouraged and supported me all these years. Through the end of March 2017 I am donating 100% of the profits from the sales of these images and donate them to the Boyer Valley Art Department. It’s my way of saying, Thanks.
I plan to have the web store at www.tedfordphoto.com set up with greeting cards,postcards, magnets and prints for sale by mid January. Education is not funded as nearly as they should be. Instructors buy their own supplies and work with very little. I am hoping that I can raise some funds to make a meaningful impact for Ted Mallory and his art department. To the man who encourages his students during and after they have left his classroom I want to say Thanks!