Dove Portraits-Photography By Barbara J. Carney
a little history
Barbara At Work

It was meant to be; there was no escaping it! I was born in a studio, so it had to be in my blood! (See my mom and me in old photo below.) Eventually I became the seventeenth member of my family involved in the field of photography. It all began when my grandmother, Myrtle, came west as a young nurse looking for a job. With camera in hand she left a wonderful record of her family’s travel by covered wagon, developing and processing as she went. After settling into a nursing career in Monroe, Washington she soon met and married my grandfather, James, who was one of four brothers starting out in photography in Washington and Idaho.

Myrtle and James used their photographic skills to record on glass negatives many wonderful scenes of their children around the farm. I’ve been fortunate to inherit many of them which I enjoy “tinting” in the style Myrtle taught me. I’ll be telling you more about that on another page, so read on…

As money began to flow again after the Depression, Myrtle and Jim left the farm and followed other family members into portrait photography, using 8x10 and 5x7 view cameras, eventually training four of their five children in the business. By the time I was born the family had spread out from Idaho, starting studios in Indiana, later in Florida, Georgia, and Delaware. My growing up years were spent in their Plant City, Florida studio, which my parents managed. From my early teens, the studio was my home away from home, as my grandmother and mother trained me after school in many behind-the-scenes jobs. It was a great feeling of accomplishment when I was finally trusted to work in the shooting room, having mastered the big old view camera with the upside-down image! But the task I enjoyed most was “tinting” and later, turning photographs into oil paintings.

After some exciting years working as a secretary in the Space industry at Cape Canaveral, and then raising three children (my favorite job), I started a home studio near Auburn, Washington. I had to give detailed directions for the poor customers to even find us! Across a one-lane bridge over the creek, down two gravel lanes, to a house in the woods on the banks of the Green River. Even so, through word-of-mouth advertising, customers began to find me!

5 Photos For 10 Cents

Now I’ve become even harder to find since I occasionally take off on photo safaris, photographing different parts of the country. I plan to add a page offering some of those scenes as well.

After a lifetime of using medium format film cameras, I've taken the plunge to using digital cameras. With the help of Photoshop as my "virtual darkroom," I can get the results I formerly achieved in my "chemical darkroom." And with archival quality printers, I'm satisfied the prints will last as long as the old tried and true techniques.

Photography has been a creative and artistic outlet for me. How exciting to have my work accepted by customers who are willing to pay me money to do a job I love! (Although I admit now I charge a little more than ten cents for five photos!) It’s gratifying to be in a profession that strengthens the sense of family and provides something that helps tie them closer together, while preserving their own special history.

Barbara J. Carney, Photographer

Dove Portraits - Barbara J. Carney, Photographer
Phone: (206) 949-4088
Contact me with any questions.

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