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Maplewood Photographer Robert George Recognized Statewide

George said even when he goes to a place like Paris he can find something to photograph in a new way.

A wedding and portrait photographer has been honored along with some big Missouri names.

The editors of Ingram’s Magazine, a Kansas City business magazine, decided Robert George belonged in the company of Stan Kroenke, Scott Schnuck, Bill Bradley, William Danforth, Ozzie Smith, Maya Angelou, John Goodwin and astronaut Linda Godwin.

George, with his studio and gallery on Sutton Boulevard, was chosen as one of the 50 Missourians You Should Know.

He recently returned from the honors ceremony in Joplin, where he had expected to be the only artist in the group, which included Dan Hesse, the CEO of Sprint.

“I met a woman from a musical arts organization, a historian who is preserving the last remaining slave cabins in Missouri and the reigning impressionist of Harry S. Truman (the guy looks just like him),” he said. “It was an eclectic and fascinating group of individuals, all from Missouri.”

George, 52, started out in University City, then moved his studio to The Hill. He’s been working out of a location next to the for six years. It’s smaller than his studio in The Hill, but said with digital equipment he doesn’t need as much space as he used to.

His studio is filled with stylish portraits and photos of brides. A street scene of Paris, with the Arc de Triomphe off in the background, sits on an easel. It’s part of his ‘Poems of Paris’ series.

He’s been to almost all the European countries, Russia, Prague, Eastern Europe, Caribbean, North Africa, Morocco and every US state except Alaska.

George started out photographing for airlines and hotels. He said he didn’t get paid much, but it was fun.

“Since college, I’ve loved to travel, then when I started a family, here in St. Louis, I needed to stay closer to home, so I started doing more work for retail clients.”

His love of travel and photography goes hand-in-hand.

“When you walk into new places, new vistas, it inspires creativity,” he said. “When you travel and see things for the first time, there’s a charge, you’re inspired.”

He said even in a place like Paris, where the greatest photographers have worked, he can see something new.

“That’s why we travel, to eat different food, and hear different language and experience different customs, and for me as a photographer it’s to see different landscapes.”

George makes portraits and photographs brides and debutantes to keep the studio doors open. Behind the scenes he does what he calls his gallery work, which is really what he loves.

“Gallery work, a little magazine work, families who want to hire us – that work is primarily Midwestern but it comes from all over the country.”

He said the business has changed since photography has gone digital. For one thing, lots more people are doing it.

On the positive side, he uses software to scan old negatives and tweak them to improve his prints in ways that he couldn’t before.

“Photography has never been in better shape with the tools we have,” he said.

“I shot 3,000 pictures at a wedding a couple weeks ago, and they’re all uploaded online."

Though he travels extensively, George said he has never shot in his own neighborhood. He considered photographing in Maplewood.

“I would walk up to Manchester, and I would challenge myself to shoot, because I love urban sprawl, and especially when it’s quaint, which is what we have,” he said. “So how to capture that in some kind of panorama?

“You’re asked to look at your own village in a new way. We have this amazing old strip," he said. "Now, how do you get a vantage point on it? How do you capture that old time feeling?”

Stop by and say hi sometime. Maybe you'll see how he did it.

 

Rebecca June 12, 2012 at 07:23 AM
Wow, Robert, your photographs have been such a part of our lives, especially the Art Photo from Morocco! Now with you being honored in Joplin, we feel very special that you have shared with all of us these beautiful photos
Kimberly Hanna Behrend June 12, 2012 at 05:05 PM
Its reassuring to know that someone had the good sense to honor, Robert George's work in photography. What we have here is an artist that captures organic elegance, simplicity, and rich beauty in each and every shot. He's one of the best. Congratulations RG for this well deserved award.
Jane Lennon June 14, 2012 at 04:25 AM
Jane Lennon and David Gartshore We continue to enjoy and appreciate our wedding photography for the art that it is; the creativity of Robert George is apparent on each page. We have recommended him to friends who recognize that his talent is not only his artistry, but also his experience in shepherding the wedding process - an unanticipated pleasure! We look forward to seeing him in action at a wedding in Provence in July!
Rebecca June 14, 2012 at 07:54 AM
Yes, you should follow this very talented photographer, He should be in NYC. Has anyone noticed his art photos on his site? They are fabulous.
Rebecca June 14, 2012 at 03:44 PM
Ken - Robert has given us time capsules of our children that we will always treasure. His work is masterful, and it is nice to see him recognized for it.

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