Bodies of Work:

Light and Lens

We make photographs many ways. Usually persistent, thoughtful work. Occasionally a quick, joyful catch. My favorite is quiet contemplation, allowing my awareness to sink into the being of a place. Several concepts weave through these bodies of work
• Character of place
• Patterns & design found in contemplation
• Human interaction with wildness—Tourism, industry, and everyday life. Other themes show up occasionally.

I photograph in fascination with the natural world and our awareness and perception of it, to share this through love of light and lens.

Background           

David Lee Myers Portrait

My scientist father and artist mother raised me on the beaches, mountains, and deserts of southern California when they were wilder than they are now. I remember lying on Will Rogers State Park’s beaches, scorching my skin as I studied sand grains an inch from my eye, each a different color and shape. Family outings to the Mojave Desert first showed me how much bigger the land is, how the earth turns under the sky, and a sense of our position in the cosmos. To be honest, as a youth I was more kinetic than sensitive. Hills were for running around, and rolling boulders down. Ouch.

I moved north to the University of California at Berkeley expecting to become a scientist, and left with B.A. & M.A. degrees in mathematics, extensive study in philosophy, physics, and chemistry—and an abiding love and commitment to fine arts photography which I had studied with Dave Bohn and Roger Minick. What had happened? Nothing original—I found Ansel Adams' Sierra Club book These We Inherit.

In 1970 the great, romantic “back to the land” movement took me northward again, to Eden Valley, near Rosburg in southwest Washington. With a home in a clearing in the woods, I enjoyed learning the forests, birds, and when Robert Michael Pyle moved into the area, the butterflies.

I grounded myself in my new community during a two year, full time oral history project for the Washington State Archives, doing portraiture, copywork, and interviews. Then I became active politically as one of Wahkiakum County’s three elected Public Utility District Commissioners from 1980–1992.

I taught photography in the Lower Columbia College, Fine Arts Department, in Longview, Washington, occasionally from 1973 and regularly from 1987–1994 and also taught for Grays Harbor College.

In 2000 I moved across the Columbia River to Astoria, Oregon.  Today I work as an independent artist, and after a decade of instructing photography in the Art Department at Clatsop Community College, Astoria, I've retired to teaching just summer workshops.

Workshops and Presentations: I enjoy teaching workshops and giving presentations, especially those where art joins natural history. I also find satisfaction helping people use art to respond to great hurts and injustices.

Phases of work:
1966—1993. Black and white, silver-gelatin darkroom works.
1994—2003. Laser-printed color notecards, photo-based collages on canvas, and a treasure trove of color slides.
2004—2011. Pigmented Inkjet color prints, all digitally prepared, and adoption of digital capture.


It's been a long, interesting journey. Here are some flashbacks:

Classic landscapes

community history

art in restorative justice