Dean Hanson


In my heart, I suppose, I've always been an artist.  I told my parents just that when I was about three years old.  But, being a practical son, I attnded college and worked as a chemist most of  my ife.  In 1999, I took the opportunity to leave my position at Orgon State University and ran off to Paris to become an artist.

My first recollections as a child were drawing and painting and this continued throughout much of my life.  Some three-dimensional work was added along the way, but it was somewhat later in life when I really discovered photography.

As a photographer, I am self-taught.  I learned my craft by reading, observing and, most importantly, thinking about the art of the photograph.  I continue to do these exercises every day.  In addition to chemistry, I have worked as a machinist and as a mechanic.  All of these occupations have added to my art education:  discipline and a way of simplifying a problem from science, craftsmanship from being a machinist and cursing from being a mechanic. . . all important attributes for an artist.  I am a traditional photographer.  Indeed, a photographer from 1910 would probably be familiar with most of my techniques.  Art, after all, is not how it's done, but what is produced.

Photography has the unique ability to really capture a moment in time in the way the Impressionists meant to do.  Over the years, photographers have interpreted this in many ways, but to me this has always translated into a discovery of the image rather than a preplanned composition.  Because discoveries in my world rarely last more than a few seconds, I must be very nimble:  one camera and lens, hand held, using available light and never trying to go back to recreate the missed image.