ST. GEORGE – Local photographer Nathan Wotkyns success has come not at a fast and furious pace, but at a slow and deliberate tempo.
According to Wotkyns, his interest in photography did not develop until he was 20 years old. He said he spent a lot of time in the local wilderness fly-fishing, and after beginning to admire and appreciate the beauty that surrounded him, he picked up his first camera – a 35mm Minolta. At first, he began to photograph the colorful fish he was catching, and friends and family began to encourage him in his newfound hobby.
Eventually he began to study the craft of photography more intensely, on his own, and after reading various authors, he decided to purchase a large format camera. His choice was an 8X10 FORMAT camera suited for landscape photography. Though it came in weighing between 18 and 20 lbs, Wotkins carried the camera into remote areas to capture images of the beautiful landscape that is Southern Utah.
According to Wotkins, his first public display of his work was in his mother’s office. Friends, family and local residents began to purchase his images.
“I owe it to my costumers, they more than anything by word of mouth have helped my business grow,” he said.
He said he eventually became acquainted with builders who took part in the Parade of Homes and that they were in need of artwork to fill their homes.
“The City of St George has done a good job of developing and rejuvenating Main Street,” said Wotkyns.
He said his gallery on Main Street has been a great location, with other artist galleries and restaurants spring up in the downtown area, there is a hint of nightlife, where people can eat and enjoy art.
Wotkyns recognizes that a great deal of his business also comes from tourists that visit the local parks and recreational areas. He says many of them want to take home a piece of the landscape with its bright “red rock and blue sky.”
According to Wotkyns, many of the large events held in the area such, as art festivals and sporting events draw many people, from around the world, into his gallery. He said he has sold many pieces of his work to people as far away as Germany, Italy, and Australia.
Wotkyns said many of the local portrait and wedding photographers, who are friends, were seeking high-quality local printing source. He said because of the demand, he expanded into a vacant space next door to his gallery and now provides printing solutions. Using high quality wide format printers and various papers to print on, he can offer popular alternatives, such as canvas gallery wrap prints, to customers. Wotkyns also offers image restoration services for those photographs that are old, cracked and fading.
Wotkyns portraits can be see at physician’s offices, barber shops, or charity events. His gallery is located at 51 North Main Street and the print shop is next door at 55 North Main. You can also view his work at www.wideangleart.comand www.print-it-shop.comfor further information.