About Dick Sanders
I was born in Santa Monica, California and my parents gave me a Kodak Brownie camera on my 6th birthday. This began a life-long love affair with photography. By age 13, I purchased darkroom gear and chemicals and set up in the bathroom after dark. My folks soon got tired of that and had my uncle build a darkroom for me in our garage. I spent hundreds of hours there. And by age 16, I started a freelance photography business, and a few nice people paid for a photo now and then. At age 23, after college and a stint in the US Naval Air Reserve, I landed a job with Sid Avery, who is best known for his Hollywood portraits of Humphrey Bogart, James Dean, and Elizabeth Taylor. Avery also did both of the "Oceans Eleven" movie publicity photos. When I worked for him, however, he was doing print advertising and TV commercials, and we worked on national campaigns for U.S. Steel, Coffee-Mate, Brown and Jordan, Mattel Toys (Hot Wheels), and Toyota. When I left the Avery studio I started my own business, shooting album covers and publicity photos for the music industry, including work for jazz artists, Blue Mitchell and Harold Land, folk legend James Taylor, and pop star Barbra Streisand. But over time, I realized I loved photography too much to mix it with business, so I switched careers, first to newspaper and magazine advertising sales, and then to promotional copywriting, which I still do today. This move allowed me to pursue photography on a personal basis. By the early 1990s, I made "serious portraiture" the focus of my fine-art work, and by the late 1990s I focused more narrowly on “street portraiture of strangers.” What’s fascinating about this work is the thrill of meeting people and the challenge of getting a good portrait in just 3 or 4 minutes (typically all the time they will allow). I have found this work immensely satisfying and thank my wife for her unwavering support and indispensable assistance. Today, I make my home in La Quinta, California with my wife Jane, and our Turkish cat, Ned Wilbur.
About the Photographs
I use a variety of medium and large format film cameras, including 2 1/4 inch Holga and 5x7 and 8x10 pinhole. My favorite camera for street portraiture is the Pentax 6x7 II with 90mm and 135mm lenses. This camera produces a quality 2 1/4 by 2 3/4 inches negative, which I scan into Photoshop with an Epson V750 Pro scanner. I make archival pigment prints on baryta coated fine-art paper with the Epson Pro 3880 printer. All photographs are in editions of 20 prints.
Back to Top
2016 - Photo Independent, The International Exhibition of Contemporary Photography. Raleigh Studios, Hollywood, CA.
2015 - Paris Photo Los Angeles International Art Fair. Exhibitor for Los Angeles Center of Photography, Photo Independent Gallery, Raleigh Studios, Hollywood, California.
2014 - Portraits: A Picture Show, Black Box Gallery, Portland, Oregon; Juror: Holly Andres, fine art photographer
2014 - Portraits 2014 with Amy Arbus, Center For Fine Art Photography, Fort Collins, CO; Juror: Amy Arbus, fine art portrait photographer
2013 - Shooting in Los Angeles, Los Angeles Center of Photography, Los Angeles, CA; Juror: Julia Dean, street photographer and photography educator
2013 - Ambient Light, Minneapolis Photo Center, Minneapolis, MN; Juror: Jim Brandenburg, photographer National Geographic Magazine
2013 - Black and White, Center For Fine Art Photography, Fort Collins CO; Jurors: Jan Potts and Elizabeth Cordon, photographers and owners Corden/Potts Gallery, San Francisco
2013 - Picture This: What We Photograph, Minneapolis Photo Center, Minneapolis, MN; Juror: Cig Harvey, fine art photographer
2012 - International Art of Photography Show, San Diego, California, juried by Julian Cox, Founding Curator and Chief Photography Curator of the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, CA
2012 - Portraits, Honorable Mention, Santa Fe Photographic Workshops, Santa Fe, NM, juried by Amber Terranova, Editor Photo District News, Aline Smithson, fine art photographer and Founder/Editor Lenscratch, Andrew Smith, Owner/Director Andrew Smith Gallery, Reid Callanan, Director Santa Fe Photographic Workshops
2012 - Monochromatic, Darkroom Gallery, Essex Jct, VT, juried by Rafal Maleszyk, fine art photographer
2011 - International Art of Photography Show, San Diego, California, juried by Anne Lyden, Associate Curator of Photography, J. Paul Getty Museum Los Angeles
2011 - Persona Portrait Show, Darkroom Gallery, Essex Jct, VT, juried by Chris Buck, celebrity portraitist
2010 - Center Forward, Denver International Airport, juried by Hamidah Glasgow, Director Center for Fine Art Photography, Fort Collins, CO
2010 - Human + Being (Juror's Selection), Center for Fine Art Photography, Fort Collins, CO, juried by Phil Borges, master portraitist
2010 - Black & White Show, Minneapolis Photo Center, juried by George Slade
2010 - Interactive Portraits, Vermont Photo Space, Essex Jct, VT, juried by Graham Gordon Ramsay
2010 - Julia Dean Alternative Photography Contest, Venice Beach, California, juried by Kathleen McLachlan and Ann Elliott Cutting
2008 - International Art of Photography Show, San Diego California, juried by Carol McCusker, Photography Curator San Diego Museum Of Photographic Arts
2008 - The Dress Show, Fraction Magazine Online, juried by Melanie McWhorter of photoeye.com.
2006 - International Art of Photography Show, San Diego, California, juried by Arthur Ollman, Director San Diego Museum of Photographic Arts.
2002 - American Photo (1st Place Portraits and People), American Photo Magazine, New York City
1997 - The Varieties of Spiritual Experience, 29 Palms Art Gallery, Twenty-Nine Palms, California
1996 - The Red Door: A Floating Opera, Tanno Gallery, Twenty-Nine Palms, California
1996 - Homeless Teens: Hollywood, Tanno Gallery, Twenty-Nine Palms, California
2012 - Photographer’s Showcase Gallery, online at
1998 - The Portraits at Sam´s Market, Park Center Gallery, Joshua Tree, California
1994 - Portraits of Our Children, Monument Galleries, Joshua Tree, California
Back to Top
Awards and Recognition
2012 - Honorable Mention, Portraits Contest, Sante Fe Photographic Workshops, Santa Fe, NM
2010 - 1st Place, Human + Being Show, Phil Borges juror, Center For Fine Art Photography, Fort Collins, CO
2008 - Honorable Mention, International Art of Photography Show, Carol McCusker juror, San Diego, CA
2002 - 1st Place, Portraits & People, Readers Contest #7, American Photo Magazine, New York City
1995 - 1st Place, Members Show, 29 Palms Art Gallery, Twenty-Nine Palms, California
1994 - 1st Place, Members Show, 29 Palms Art Gallery, Twenty-Nine Palms, California
1994 - 1st Place, Southland Show, 29 Palms Art Gallery, Twenty-Nine Palms, California
2014 - Portraits 2014, The Center For Fine Art Photography, Amy Arbus juror, Fort Collins, Colorado
2012 - Portraits, Santa Fe Photographic Workshops, Reid Callanan juror, Santa Fe, New Mexico
2012 - Monochromatic, Darkroom Gallery, Rafal Maleszyk juror, Essex Junction, Vermont
2010 - Black & White, MPLS Photo Center Publication, George Slade juror, Minneapolis, Minnesota
2008 - Fraction Magazine (online), The Dress Show, Melanie McWhorter juror, Santa Fe, New Mexico
2002 - American Photo Magazine. David Schonauer, Editor. Hachette Filipacchi Media, New York, NY
1997 - Best of Photography Annual. Linda Lowell, Steve La Voie, Douglas Peck. Glen Serbin, Photographer's Forum, Santa Barbara, California