A note from the editors: “Inspiration boards” give a glimpse at the inner landscape of a creative person’s brain. Boards can convey a concept, a design direction, ideas for a kitchen remodel, or in our case, a personal narrative. Every so often, we feature one of the creative spirits at Chute Gerdeman.
Through the lens of an architect and minimalist…
Don’t let Rob’s day job fool you. He may be CG’s Senior Environments Designer specializing in 3D illustration, but his exploration as a photographer has guided his career in new directions over the years. While professionally trained in architecture, Rob’s real passion lies in image making, having studied photography while at The Ohio State University.
His photography is a minimalist exploration of light, shadow and form. His glass vase series is his latest endeavor and uses the form of the glass to manipulate light to create an image almost devoid of subject. The resulting images suggest the forms that created them but have been transformed into something entirely different. Just as architecture suggests the presence of the inhabitant, his photography transforms the vessel into an abstraction of its intended purpose. In his photo titled “ART,” he shows the reflection of the Columbus College of Art and Design’s landmark sculpture in the windows of a nearby dormitory. The careful placement of this impressive installation is captured here and suggests to the viewer that the aspiring artists who reside steps away quite likely live, work and sleep their art.
Rob began his journey in 3D image making (with his trusty 25 mhz Mac Powerbook at his side) more than 20 years ago while serving in the United States Air Force. Rob, and his Mac, have come a long way since then; he earned a degree in Architecture from OSU and, in addition to his day job, moonlights as Chute’s in-house photographer.
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1. The aforementioned photo titled “ART” was taken at the Columbus College of Art and Design.
2. This photograph of the Guggenheim was actually the result of a happy accident. After trekking across Central Park, Rob got to the Guggenheim only to find that it closed 30 minutes prior. In frustration, he threw his camera in the air and, without meaning to, took a photograph of the building. To his surprise, the photo actually turned out pretty well!
3. Abstracts are a large part of Rob’s photography portfolio. He’s great at analyzing interesting angles and details to turn ordinary objects into artful images. You can see more of his collection here.
4. The photo that started it all! Rob got hooked on photography years ago while experimenting with his newly-purchased, 1955 Rolliecord Va (the best $50 he’s ever spent, Rob affirms). This negative—his first with his new/old camera—is of a dilapidated piano that had been left outside an abandoned church.