Photography of Brad Crooks


Brad Crooks
“A Fan’s Guide to Sports Museums and Halls of Fame”

Brad and I met just this past year when I invited a friends over for a summer BBQ. He is an amazingly talented, giving man and also extraordinarily humble about his skills. Viewing his images, it’s almost like he is painting with his lens. One of the most interesting things about Brad, he and his camera truly are one… every time I talk to him he’s heading off somewhere to take shots of something, just because that’s what he does. It’s not his job, although I’m positive he could make a living from it if he wanted to. Because of his love for what he sees, his images always have a unique personal touch. Currently you can not purchase any of his work… but maybe one of these days he’ll share his talents with the world so you can be one of the lucky owners. I’m delighted to have had the opportunity to talk with Brad face-to-face and so thankful to be able to call him a friend.

How did you get started?

My Father was a photographer. By the time I was ten I had a twin lens Rollei, a studio, a darkroom, all the film and paper I needed, a teacher (my dad), and a job taking photos for my local newspaper @ fifteen dollars a print.

What do you want to be when you grow up?

I don’t ever want to grow up!!


Name three favorite artists/designers/creatives

1) I love the Hudson River School artists. They were mid 19th century American landscape artists. Their landscapes had a very real, but romantic quality.

2) Andrew Wyeth is also one of my favorites. His simple landscapes and portraits are amazing. Andrew died three weeks ago (1/16/09).

3) I should probably pick one photographer… since I am one. How about Alfred Eisenstaedt. I believe he was chosen by his peers as the photojournalist of the century. His images appeared in Life Magazine for 50 years. They represented ‘America’.


What kind of training, schooling or other learning experiences have you gone through that have helped you get to where you are now?

I had no official training other than working at my Father’s Studio for years. I guess part of my training was, and still is, to study the work of great photographers. Constantly shooting, trial and error, and learning through experience is my number one teacher.


Do you feel you’re successful?

There are levels of success, so my answer would be yes – but there’s still many facets of photography I want to succeed at.

What do you like most about what you do?

The people I meet, and the places I travel to.


What #1 piece of advice can you offer to those which might like to “follow in your footsteps”?

Study great photographs to see how they were done. Learn how your camera sees versus how your own eyes see. Practice, practice, practice.

What are you most proud of?

That my photography has appeared in over 45 major US newspapers, including the New York Times and the Boston Globe.


View more of Brad Crook’s photography through his flickr gallery.

A beautiful view of the world: Shawn Ingram


Shawn Ingram
• Photographer
specializing in Nature Photography

Pristine Photography

Shawn and I met through Cafepress and a mutual friend. He and I both dip our toes into programming for our own business use yet we each have our artistic interests as well. We often find ourselves brainstorming in a wide array of topics from life in general to business success on a regular basis. I have not yet had the opportunity to shake the man’s hand in person – but that day will come for sure. He has been a great motivator, a consistent voice of reason and encouragement and someone I am honored to call a good friend – even if he does think the Steelers are a team worth rooting for.


How did you get started?

My dad was always into photography as a hobby.  As a kid we were always featured in 8mm movies, slides, or tons of pictures.  I guess a little bit of it rubbed off.  As I got older, I started snapping more.

What do you want to be when you grow up?

A national geographer on-location photographer would be awesome.


Name three favorite artists/designers/creatives:

Ansel Adams – I love his eye for subjects and his black and white work is just mind blowing, Jen Goode – penguin rules and thats all I gotta say.

What kind of training, schooling or other learning experiences have you gone through that have helped you get to where you are now?

As I kid I always loved art but never really did anything with it other than drawing at home.  I was out of school before I got my first camera and was in my 30s before I really started developing my style.  Two women that I dated were instrumental in pushing me to show my work.


Do you feel you’re successful?

Well if being a starving artist is a success, then I am.  I haven’t really figured out the whole marketing aspect of getting people to buy photography.  I have sold a few and I have won some contests with my photography so to me that is a success.  Knowing that others appreciate nature through my eyes enough that they purchase/vote for my photography tells me that I’m successful in sharing the world through my eyes.

What do you like most about what you do?

I love nature and I love being able to share the way I see nature with others.


What #1 piece advice can you offer to those which might like to “follow in your footsteps”?

Don’t…  lol.  Find someone who is doing this and able to pay their bills with it and mentor them.  Once ya figure out how to pay the bills with it, share some insight with us starving artists!  Seriously though, follow your dreams and what you enjoy. While I may not be paying the bills with my photography, I love what I’m doing and money does trickle in from it.  These days, every penny coming in is a good penny.

You can also find Shawn’s work for purchase through the following locations:

Pristine Photography at Imagekind – prints and framed art
Pristine Photography at Cafepress – Specialty items, decor and apparel

My first non-doodle that sold

When I first started selling my art online, I really wanted to focus on more fine art and photography. I never offered my now favorite doodly designs. I never stopped to consider my doodles worthy of selling. I was a designer… not a doodler.

It’s interesting for me to look back now and see the transition of where my art have been and where it is now. One of my first for-sale images that actually sold was this tulip photo. My sister-in-law made the purchase and I was instantly motivated to keep going. I think she still has it hanging in her kitchen.

Journals and Note Books
Tulips by JGoode

“Add a splash of color and peaceful beauty to your day with an original floral print by jgoode. Tulips in shades of plum and sage inspire warmth and serenity!”