Gary Wagner’s love of the photographic image and craft began when he became the photographer for his high school newspaper in Kokomo, Indiana. He continued his education at the University of Indiana, in Bloomington eventually moving to Santa Barbara, California, to attend Brooks Institute of Photography. While at Brooks, Gary increased his artistic and theoretical knowledge of photography and the historical significance of the printed image. Earning a Master’s Degree in Photography from Brooks Institute, with the publication of his work on historical carbon printing, gave Gary a continued appreciation and passion for his artistic craft.
His photographic images have been recognized by exhibitions in many galleries, published in Lenswork magazine, Outdoor Photographer magazine and Digital Photographer UK magazine among others. Having won numerous awards including Best of Show for two years at the Sacramento Fine Art Center, accepted into the California State Fair Fine Art Show and received awards 7 years annually in Black and White magazine. Most recent achievement was the publication of his book, “Digital Black and White Landscape Photography, Fine Art Techniques from Camera to Print” by Amherst Media. Gary is also the author of three self-published books: Sierra Nevada Mountains, Sierra Mountain Wilderness and Redwood Coast: Sea and Land.
Gary’s professional career spans more than three decades and includes, fine art, portrait, and commercial photography. His knowledge, expertise, and enthusiasm for the photographic image enabled him to successfully teach theory and technique at the college level and seminars in Europe on the English country landscape. Fluent with all film formats, from 35mm to 8×10, Gary has embraced the digital image and the ever changing environment of photography in the current technological age. Exploring photography using digital imagery offers a myriad of possibilities. Refining technique with the interplay of artistic expression fascinates and challenges Gary to continue his exploration of the photographic image and his study of the land and its natural elements and beauty.
For the past 25 years Gary has made his home in Northern California.
Seascapes, landscapes, and the world around me is the studio I use for my photographic work. I find freedom and inspiration to create my interpretations of the natural elements and scenic vistas that come into my view, at these locations.
The Landscape is an exciting and challenging environment to work in, for it is constantly changing with the light of the day and the changing seasons. On many occasions I have revisited my favorite locations repeatedly throughout the year and found them to be completely different in their appearance, from the sand on the beach, the depth of water in the streams, or the light striking the rocks. This environment and the many faces it reveals, bring me endless excitement, for creating my art.
I work exclusively in black and white. This medium best relates the shapes, lines, and tones of the landscape and more fully captures what I am viewing when I look at a scene. Previously a black and white film photographer I now use the magic of the digital imagery to capture and alter the landscape I see and create with my vision. I find the creation of photographic art today to offer endless possibilities for creativity and the making and sharing of visual art.
As an artist, I have tried not only to pay respect to the natural order and beauty of the earth but also to show my vision of land, sea and light.