Grandpa’s Dog

This is Grandpa’s old white dog, Apollo. He is a German Shepherd mix. Grandpa got him about 8 years before he died, and he loved that dog. Apollo wasn’t the world’s most intelligent dog. The cats terrorized him incessantly, and he never seriously tried to put them in their places. He was devoted to Grandpa though, laying at Grandpa’s feet almost constantly until Grandpa died. The day Grandpa died, Apollo jumped up on the bed and stayed with him until the funeral home came to take Grandpa’s body. That night, Apollo and the two formerly evil cats slept cuddled together in the room where Grandpa died.

A big white German Shepherd mix dog lies on a tile flor with one eye open. He is wearing a nylon dog harness.

See the rest of my photographs of Grandpa and his pets.

Grandpa 3-17-08

This is one of the last photographs I made of my grandpa. It was made back in March. The last photos I did of him were the ones of him reading the newspaper a month later. After he died, I looked for the negatives for this photograph, and when I looked it up in my notes, I realized that I had not made any new photographs of him after April. That seems to be the last time he was really able to talk to me when I went to see him. After that, he was usually laying in bed and sitting in the living room, but unable to talk or understand much. I didn’t feel right taking pictures of him when he couldn’t understand what I was doing. He was 83 when I made this photograph.

Charles crawford in March, 2008 suffering from alzheimer's disease at age 83.

See the rest of my photographs of Grandpa.

Fort Wayne Photographers Exhibit Reviewed

The Fort Wayne Photographers exhibit at the Artlink Gallery in Fort Wayne, Indiana includes one of my photographs, “Grandpa and Apollo”.

An old man and his big white dog look out the window of their house. The man has his hand on the dog's shoulder.

I was pleasantly surprised to see my photograph talked about and published in the review of the show in the Fort Wayne Reader, a local arts and entertainment newspaper. I’ve excerpted the part of reviewer Dan Swartz’s article that talks about my work below:

“Christopher Crawford also presented a beautiful photograph, entitled “Grandpa and Apollo,” which is fulfilling on many different levels. First, Crawford’s photography is superb from every technical sense. This is very important in any judgment of a photograph; although it may be an art form, open for subjective interpretation and opinion, it also has roots in science and design. Crawford mixes the two in a captivating way in this image, one that I enjoyed initially, and found myself constantly coming back to. The second reason for this piece’s success is its lack of pretension. Not titled “My deepest despair” or some other histrionic phrase, “Grandpa and Apollo” is “just” an image of an elderly man looking out a window with his dog. Yet this simple image becomes very moving and quite emotional through the lens of a talented photographer.

The simplicity really carries this image far. It shows, in a great way, how truth has a great deal to do with great art. While many times artists will use hyperbole or overly dramatic concepts and processes to propel art, many times they can just as easily find that great shot of an everyday event which carries so much meaning to the viewer when correctly paired with beautiful technical capacity.”

You can read the entire review of the Fort Wayne Photographers exhibit on the Fort Wayne Reader’s website.

Goodbye Grandpa

My grandfather, Charles Crawford, died this afternoon after several years with Alzheimer’s disease. He was 84 years old. He has been sick for a long time, but it doesn’t make it easier. I’ll miss him.

charles crawford with his grey cat

This is grandpa and his old cat, Molly. I made this photograph back in 1999, when he was still very healthy. Molly is still with us, she is about 18 years old now. I have been photographing grandpa for many, many years. I have only a small part of those photographs of grandpa on my website so far, but I will add more in the months ahead.