WILLIAM KARL VALENTINE
I was born in 1963 in Pasadena, California. I really began photographing when I received a Pentax K1000 as a graduation gift from my parents, although I remember having a Kodak Instamatic as a kid. I first studied photography under Walt Girdner at Pasadena City College in 1982.
I received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree specializing in Photography in December of 1986, graduating Magna cum Laude, from Arizona State University. While there I studied under Bill Jay, William Jenkins, Tamarra Kaida, Jack Stuler, Eric Kronengold, and Jim Haijeck. I also had my work reviewed by Van Deren Coke during an exhibition at Northlight Gallery and also got to meet A.D. Coleman, Helmut Gernsheim, and Mary Ellen Mark.
While at ASU, I developed my vision as a documentary photographer and began work on many of my most prominent bodies of work. During my first spring break I got access to ride along and photograph the Pasadena Police Department through my father who was an Officer. The initial images were good which led to more time there photographing, and eventually lead me to become a Reserve Officer in the Department's photo lab. To date the Law Enforcement photographs remain some of my most powerful images. I also began a series on the Cactus League, which is Major League Baseball's Spring Training in Arizona. The Cactus League Series continues to this day and led to another body of work documenting Wrigley Field, Tiger Stadium, and Fenway Park. My City Series also began in college and that series led to the Santa Anita series featured here.
My Pasadena PD series helped me decide to become a Police Officer. I found I really enjoyed the work and I realized the schedule would afford me plenty of time to continuing photographing. I was also hesitant to try and find work as a press photographer, or some similar job, because I always want to retain control of my images. I worked twenty years as a Police Officer & Detective before having to medically retire several years ago.
Over the past twenty five years I published the book “Santa Anita” and have collaborated on several other books. I have also exhibited work nationally & internationally in over thirty group and solo exhibitions. I continue to produce prints and look for more exhibition opportunities while also pursuing more book projects from my various bodies of work. I currently live in Newport Beach, California and still maintain a traditional darkroom as well as a digital darkroom.
All Content on this site - © 1981 – 2017 William Karl Valentine