Born to itinerant beet farmers from North Dakota during the dustbowl of the 1930's, Charles Nelson Groh has been a creative force since shortly after his birth. As the 10th (and last-born) of the Groh siblings, much of young Charles' formative years were spent in the care of his older brothers and sisters - as his parents sought work to sustain their large family. Left to doodle on his own and blessed with a vivid imagination, Charles was creating pencil and crayon sketches before the age of 4.
His first camera was a Kodak "No. 2 Rainbow Hawkeye" box camera, which his grandparents Lil and Bill Groh gave him for his 6th birthday. Charlie, which is what his Uncle Buck called him, would save his wages from picking beets alongside his parents and siblings to buy second-hand film and constructed his own darkroom in the root cellar of his family's rented farmhouse. Rather than paying for expensive solutions, he developed his photos in chemicals he formulated himself, after spending hours in the local town's library researching various photographic processes. By the time he was 10 and entered the 9th grade, he was an accomplished photographer - with photos published in the Fargo Chronicle and Bismark Times. Some referred to him as a prodigy.
Charlie's passion for the arts extends well-beyond photography into the areas of music, choreography, and the craftsmanship of fine woodwork. A master craftsman, he has designed and constructed fine pieces of cabinetry and furniture - with intricate inlays and luxuriant finishes. His works can be found in some of the finest living rooms, dining rooms and brothels around the world.
Recognized as the 'Zen Master' of the marching arts, Charlie has been a student, performer, instructor, designer, and director of marching bands and drum corps. His unique ability to lay-out and line a football field is recognized around the country and he is a regular clinician and consultant on the subject.
He was a member of the original Anaheim Kingsmen in the early 1970s and recently returned in the role as the visual instructor and marching member for the corps' return as an 'alumni' organization that performed at the Drum Corps International World Championships in 2007. Over 200 former members, now in their 40's thru 60's, returned to the field to perform and amaze audiences.
Never without his trusty Nikon, Charlie is now focused on expressing his vision through high definition digital images of interesting people and places. His knack for capturing the energy of a musical performance, the nuance in an expression, or the beauty of an everyday object has made his art popular with a wide audience of fans.
|Copyright © 2009 DCP Partners, LLC All rights reserved
Photographs Copyright © 2007-2009 Charles Groh All rights reserved