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(and if that wasn't enough...)
  CityLines + glassesSo the first thing you need to know is that I'm a photographer with lousy vision. I was born very nearsighted, only partially correctable - as in "Don't let me drive your car". Whether it be through ignorance, stubbornness or over-compensation, I guess you could say I've "blindly" refused to face the facts.

As a kid, I may have been attracted to photography because it could extend my vision - bring things closer so I could see the details. But then I discovered I could use it to see things people with good vision couldn't. Now *that* was satisfying! Turns out the truth is, when it comes to photography how well you see has only a little to do with how well you "see".

For me, it's more about the other kind of "vision". It's about light, composition, form, simplicity. It's about capturing and conveying those elusive moments that tell little stories - or suggest an essence, a mood, a message or a mystery.

Most of my work is spontaneous and unplanned. I put myself in an interesting place, and let the light and my eye lead me to a subject. It almost doesn't matter what subject. Then the fun begins. Shooting handheld, I become like a kid - curious, excited and willing to see things in new and sometimes odd ways. I look closer, I ask what if, I crawl on my belly, I jiggle the camera. It's way too much fun and should probably be illegal.

In 2003, I REALLY began to jiggle the camera. Unfortunately it was Parkinson’s – bringing with it a nasty hand tremor! “But I’m a STILL Photographer!” I argued to no one in particular - and to no avail. This was not good – followed closely by a couple years of REALLY not good.

But then one day, the big AHA!  I realized I could use the tremor as a technique!  And that changed everything. Read a personal essay and view the photographic results Movement Disorder >

But wait! AHA again! The tremor is one kind of movement. But it's only one of MANY motion possibilities! So I find myself exploring movement, but within a still medium. I call it "un-still Photography" because, well, that's exactly what it is.

Photography has always been a way for me to see the world in new ways. It has been a major source of fun, joy and creativity. It has stoked my curiosity, taken me to new places and enticed me to try new things, many of them completely legit!

Perhaps most importantly, photography has given me the opportunity to turn my so-called “disabilities” into something positive and empowering. Yet another new way of seeing.

I hope my images will help you “see” the world in new ways - turning you on to what lives just beyond our daily "nearsightedness".



I was a kid when it started - a mere innocent. My folks got me a Kodak Brownie Hawkeye - my 1st camera. "Here kid", they said. "Enjoy it". What they should have said was, "Here kid. first one's free."

It was nothing at first, a 12 exposure roll here - couple of flash bulbs there. Before I knew it, I fell in with a fast crowd - hanging out in dark rooms!. Experimenting with CHEMICALS!!

Alan  and his habitIt was then I started to break the rules. I began ignoring "NO TRESPASSING" signs. Sometimes, just for the thrill, I'd tilt the camera so the horizon WASN'T HORIZONTAL!!! Finally, I had to get a paper route & sell seeds door to door to feed my habit.

I did try to seek help. I joined a therapy group for photo addicts based on the "12 Stop" program. It didn't click. Everywhere I looked, people were selling film, never once asking for an ID. Soon I was out on the streets again, always angling for that next shot. Oh, I'd do anything to get high - climb trees, poles, fences, stairs - I had no pride. It got so I didn't care what people thought as I lay in the street with my wide angle lens stuck out there for all to see.

I hit bottom in Amsterdam. In a Koda-crazed state, I strapped on every piece of gear I'd brought - 2 cameras, 4 lenses, 4 kinds of film, light meters, filters, batteries and a tripod - and walked into town to shoot. Powerful images everywhere - wonderful architecture - smiling faces - magical light - scrumptious french fries. I couldn't crank a frame.

photo addict with the goodsToday, of course, I can see it for the classic photo overdose it was - the dazed, crazed and glazed-over, pack mule photographer - unable to make a decision. At the time though, it was devastating. I was a broken man - deep in denial - with sore feet.

From then on, my shame knew no bounds. When the urge to shoot became too big, I'd go hang out with tourists so I'd blend in, Then I'd sneak to the lab at night and secretly savor my prints in private. Then, finally, a breakthrough. The day every photographer dreams of - I saw the light. But wait! It was coming from a computer monitor! And before I could say, "dot-com", I was caught in the Web.

The Web has really helped me take responsibility for what I'd become. The only way out was to shout it to the world from the highest rooftop (where I had climbed to get a good angle) that I WAS a ph.... ph.... PHOTOGRAPHER and PROUD of it!! Whew, there, I said it.

The only thing that bothers me is that computer store clerk who threw in a CD of Internet software and said, "Here kid. This one's free"



Artist as  blur

Alan Babbitt
Fine Art Photography
89 Willow Ave.
Fairfax, CA 94930, USA


      Email Alan



2011 "Un-still Photography" & "Photo Blendo", Mill Valley Community Center, Mill Valley Art Commission
2010-11 "Un-still Photography", "Photo Blendo" shown at various businesses, agencies and other Marin venues, Artisans
2010 "Un-still Photography", Transit Authority of Marin, San Rafael, CA, Artisans

"Un-still Photography", Fairfax, CA Public Library

2009 "Photo Blendo", Fairfax, CA Public Library
2009 "Photo Blendo", Double Rainbow Cafe, San Rafael, CA, Artisans
2009 "Un-still Photography", 303 2nd St, San Francisco
1999 Milt Wallace Video, San Francisco
1998 Milt Wallace Video, San Francisco
1997 Created personal online photography gallery -
1992 "Urban Lines, Shadows & Body Parts" Fairfax, CA Public Library
1990 Spanky's Restaurant, Fairfax, CA
1976 San Francisco Public Library, Richmond Branch
2007 Old Enough to Buy Art - Melting Point Gallery - San Francisco - Exhibit and Sale to benefit The National Parkinson's Foundation
2005 "The Human Element" - Coastal Arts League - Half Moon Bay, CA
2003 "Urban Landscapes" - Coastal Arts League - Half Moon Bay, CA
2000 28th Annual Juried Photography Exhibition - Larson Gallery - Yakima, WA - all 4 entries chosen
1999 27th Annual Juried Photography Exhibition - Larson Gallery - Yakima, WA
1998 Featured photographer on Pomegranates, an art and literary online magazine
1992 Mill Valley Photo Competition
1975 de Young Museum Art School - several exhibitions
1976-78 North Beach Photo Fair
2011 Best of America Photography Volume II - images published - Kennedy Publishing.

Feature articles in conjunction with solo exhibit at the Mill Valley Community Center - Published by Mill Valley Patch - See story >
And by Mill Valley Herald See story >


"Blur & Shake" - Fine Art Photography Weekly - Online video interview on Abstract photography - SMIBS TV - See video >

2009 "abstract Art Photography" - Online audio interview podcast - 7 Photography Questions - Go to webpage & podcast >
2007 Marin Independent Journal - "Tremor Enhanced" - Feature Article by Paul Liberatore
1998 Marin Independent Journal - Online photo gallery chosen "Web Site of the Week".
1992 Marin Independent Journal - Review of solo exhibition.
1978 The Reel Thing - "Shooting The Shoot" - article about shooting production stills.
1976 San Francisco Chronicle - photograph published
1999 4th place (over 29,000 entries) - Canon/Photographer's Forum Magazine
1993 Silver award - Art of California Magazine
1992 Mill Valley Photo Competition
1986-92 Knowledge Industries - Developed and taught workshops in Visualization, Visual Aesthetics and Creative Concepts
1975 de Young Museum Art School, San Francisco - Created art videos, taught classes & exhibited.

Dr. and Mrs. Jerome Fine, Charlotte, NC
Milt & Carol Wallace, Sonoma, CA
Dr. Joseph Armel, Mill Valley, CA
Stephen Kopels, San Francisco, CA
Bob Baker, Sun Valley, ID

The Schulmans, Moraga, CA
Carol Nyhoff, Berkeley, CA
Don Jacobs, Las Vegas, NV
Debbie Fine, Washington, DC
Debbie and Jim Krasne, Scottsdale, AZ

From1960 Ongoing, mostly self-taught, still photography
1969 B.A. in Visual Communications, University of Nebraska
1992 Workshop with Photographer Brenda Tharpe.
1947 Brooklyn, New York


High quality, archival prints of my photographs are available at reasonable prices.

If you'd like to license the use of photographs on this website for such purposes as advertising, multimedia, brochures, etc., or to offer an assignment, please contact Alan at 415-485-1688 or Email Alan