The National Road

. . . a photographic journey - by Clarence Carvell


About the Photographer/Author

It's hard to classify myself as a 'Professional Photographer' when I find myself enjoying it as much as I do. There are professional wedding photographers, photojournalists, architectural photographers - there needs to be a 'doing what I love photographer'.

I think from a very early age I had ambitions of being a photographer, probably going back to when I bought a small folding Baldinette for $2 a week from a local camera store in northern Maine. At the time, I was earning $.12 per hour as a theater usher. Since then I've been a musician, an engineer and a builder. It took about 35 years to go full circle.

Serious image making was the farthest thing from my mind when I took a one week workshop in photography from the very talented teacher and photographer, Craig Stevens. From that workshop, I've never looked back. It was not the photography lesson that changed my life however, but the process of simply finding myself.

I went on to get a degree in fine art photography and to spend a great deal of time giving people a glimpse of the world around them. Photography is a powerful tool, so much so that it can easily change the world around us and make us believers in whatever the photographer chooses. For me it's a tool to encourage change in people's lives, to make things better and to offer hope.

My time is spent about equally between the National Road Project, pursuing an MFA degree, photographing for the Civil War News, overseeing the Maryland Photographic Alliance, teaching workshops and conducting seminars and the mundane things of marketing and managing the business of photography.

I've used all film formats out of necessity but prefer the 4 x 5 large format camera to all others. My preference is black & white and I still love the darkroom process though digital printing is fast becoming a necessary skill. I teach all aspects of photography and like all serious photographers, have had numerous articles and photos published in major magazines. I mention this not because I believe it makes my photography any better or more valuable but it seems to add credibility to what photographers do.

Building a Web site by the uninitiated is an arduous task. Fueled by the desire to make a collection of the National Road photographs available to anyone interested, Dwelling on the patience of friends, I have managed to make the site reasonably friendly.

Since 1991, the National Road Project has documented life along the highway from Baltimore, Maryland to Zanesville, Ohio, in the form of personal interviews and photographs. Over 7500 photographs exist in the NRP archives, all made along the National Road since 1991.

This site is copyrighted 2002 by Clarence Carvell. No copying, electronic storage or reproduction
of any portion of this site is permitted except by express permission of the author.