Red Lake Nation News - Babaamaajimowinan (Telling of news in different places)

Image Photography still going strong after 50 years


November 23, 2020

Bob Smith, owner of Image Photography, is celebrating his business's 50th anniversary. (Jillian Gandsey / Bemidji Pioneer)

BEMIDJI -- A camera malfunction at his first gig couldn't stop Bob Smith from forging what would become a 50-year career as a commercial photographer.

It was Aug. 8, 1970, and Smith was shooting the first of about 2,500 weddings in the Bemidji area. Robyn and Bill Schulke were the bride and groom. Smith, a 27-year-old Bemidji State College professor, was just starting his side job as a photographer.

"We were taking pictures after the wedding at my folks' house," Bill Schulke recalled, "and his camera went bonkers. He didn't want to lose all of his film, so we found the darkest place in my folks' house, which was a closet. He went in the closet, overhauled his camera and got everything working, and came back and finished the shoot."


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