Library hosts exhibit

The Grand Canyon-Tusayan Community Library has offered its walls to host an exhibit by local photographer Bob McEachern.

The Xanterra tour bus driver has about 15 large-format 13 by 19 inch photos that will be on display through March. All but one of the pictures were taken here at the canyon since McEachern arrived here in May, but only a few are of the canyon itself.

"My idea is to show that there's more going on here than to stand on the edge of the canyon and look in," he said.

Especially compelling are his spontaneous shots of wildlife, taken with a 400 mm telephoto lens that renders soaring condors and a napkin-nibbling squirrel in sharp detail.

McEachern started work as a professional photographer in 1951 after attending Air Force photography training. While assigned to Washington D.C., he focused on news photography with subjects that included federal landmarks, the queen of the Netherlands and Charles Limburgh's mechanic standing in front of the Spirit of St. Louis.

When he left the military, he worked for 22 years as a fire department photographer.

For about 15 years, in the 70s and 80s, he said he put his cameras away but after retirement, he hit the road, living out of his mobile home and doing freelance photography for air shows. Digital photography made that lifestyle possible.

"I was so used to doing my own printing. But when digital came along I saw the possibility of doing it while traveling," he said.

When gas bills started to reach $300 a month, however, he decided it was time to find a home base.

"I remembered how much fun I had here so I came back to do photography here" he said.

While he will occasionally go out with a subject in mind ­ to Yavapai Point following a snowstorm, for instance ­ most of his shots are unplanned.

"I don't very often go out to shoot a specific thing," he said. "I always seem to have better luck when I just see something and grab it."

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