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Tucson, Arizona

Michael

Bends

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House
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Michael is a remarkable artist who has a diverse educational and working background. Having achieved university degrees in Forestry, Teaching, and Urban Planning has led him to have a catalogue of experiences that few people have. Also, there have been experiences, unrelated to his university degrees, which influence his images. For example, one of these unrelated experiences is the work he did for the Museum of Northern Arizona on archaeological surveys and digs. Being aware of Michael’s life experiences makes it is easier to see some of the catalysts of his extraordinary photography – initially Nature; Art; and Archaeology.

With regards to his photographic skills, he is self-taught. He began in the mid 70’s by studying the masters of photography and art. At the same time, he purchased a couple of used 35mm cameras and began traveling; hiking; exploring; and camping in the Four Corners Region of the Southwest [Arizona, Utah, Colorado, & New Mexico]. For many years he was transfixed by the landscapes, archaeological sites, and the pre-history and history of the southwest – all the while, emulating the master works of the photographers he studied.​

During this early learning phase of his photographic growth, he worked in several camera formats, which included the 4 x 5 view camera. During the late 70’s and early 80’s both his images and writing made regular appearances in local magazines and newspapers such as ‘Sedona Life Magazine’ and the Museum of Northern Arizona’s ‘Plateau Magazine’.

Eventually, he mothballed his stable of film cameras to begin working with digital cameras in 2009 in order to have greater control over both the original and final images, expanding his original artistic approach to image making. With these new digital cameras he began working on series of images from the desert. He also traveled with his wife and family into central Mexico where, among other photographic interests, he photographed a dozen of the original 16th century Spanish Fortress Monasteries.

Remaining true to his interests in art, Michael’s work does not include commercial photography. Having chosen this path has allowed him the freedom to choose the images he has wanted to create, wherever he may live or travel. Currently that is in Tucson, Arizona, which is centrally located in the Sonoran Desert of the great Southwest.

Some of his extensive and diverse image series include Mexican Icons; The Shamans; Spirits of the Desert Passed; The Sahuaros; Mexican Monasteries; Sahuaro Skins, and Las Brujas – each of these extensive series have been designed by the creative mind of an exceptional artist