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Gordon R. Wenzel

Department: Art

Adjunct Faculty in Photography

Gordon Wenzel

I still remember the very first photograph that I ever printed in the darkroom. Photography had always been a part of my life, since my father was a photojournalist and my grandfather managed a commercial photography lab. But when I actually rocked the tray of developer and watched the latent image of that first print magically appear before my eyes everything changed. At that moment, photography became and continues to be my passion.

In class, while students are taught to understand the technical skills of either digital or black and white film, they are also challenged to learn how to construct an image that has meaning and intent. Photography, though, is more than just taking a picture-it is a way to help others see the world differently. At SU, I strive to help my students "learn to see."

Owning my own professional photography business for nearly two decades, I have found creating images others enjoy to be incredibly rewarding. While working as a professional commercial photographer, I have had the privilege of photographing three U.S. presidents, dozens of celebrities and scores of CEOs. My work has been appeared in the books Photos that Inspire, Professional Photographers of America Loan Collection as well as numerous annual reports, print campaigns and magazines such as Sports Illustrated and American Photographer. In addition, I regularly exhibit my personal art photography in fine art galleries.

What does that mean for SU photography students? For graphic design majors, my real life insights are incredibly relevant since they will be working with professional photographers throughout their career. And for students of other majors, the skills they acquire they will continue to use as they document the important moments in their life.

After six years of teaching here, I can earnestly say that SU is a nurturing culture where students are highly engaged and learning is a priority.

Outside of SU and my photography career, I enjoy traveling with my wife and daughter, skiing, biking, hiking and scuba diving.

Courses taught:

  • ARTS-241 Black and White Photography
  • ARTS-243 Digital Photography
  • ARTS-244 Advanced Photography
  • ARTS-341 Photojournalism
  • ARTS-341 Topics in Photography