Robert James Johnson
A native of a Western Pennsylvania steel manufacturing town, Ellwood City, I moved to Texas shortly after graduation in 1975 from Edinboro University in pursuit of a teaching position. Work as an educator was not to be found, I instead continued on as a forklift operator, technical illustrator, and ultimately as a graphic artist/designer for the bulk of my career. A self-imposed hiatus from work life in 1985 was spent exploring oil painting and monotype printmaking, and three years of living in Washington state rekindled my love of the outdoors. Following twenty years as a graphic designer in Fort Worth Texas, my wife and I relocated to Santa Fe in 2017. Happily I’m enjoying the people, the sun, hiking, photographing, exploring the region, and working in my studio since then.
My personal purpose and pleasure in creating my most recent artwork, cyanotypes, is driven by several of its attributes, listed below not necessarily in the order of importance. Contact printed cyanotypes combine the simplicity of production with the pleasure of being outside on a sunny day, simple papers, benign chemistry, hands-on control, the beauty of a rich saturated blue, and the inevitable variations innate in a hand-made product.