Raoul E. Calleja, Creative Director and Founder of Vernakular Photo Designs discovered early on that trigonometry and the violin were not his forte, so he traded in his Texas Instrument and string instrument for an SLR camera. After studying photography at Ryerson University in Toronto, he headed to Japan for a four-year adventure that included teaching Japanese businessmen how to use reported speech, perfecting his karaoke rendition of Hey Jude , and setting a personal record of 34 pieces of sushi in one sitting. After Japan, he worked for a navigation software company mapping highways across the US, which took him through 34 states in 18 months, and countless Grand Slam® breakfasts at Denny's. This cross-country road adventure would later inspire Vernakular's inaugural series, Highway Americana.
Michael J. England known in creative circles as sheriff mike was born in New York City, but raised primarily on Florida's gulf coast. Now a longtime resident of the East Village, he draws constant inspiration from his neighborhood milieu, realizing it with a keen eye for animation and design honed through experience in illustration. With more than 20 years experience making photographs, he still roams the streets as a perpetual tourist employing his mantra: “the basic truth is that in this city everything is always different all the time."
Milo Hess has been a multi-faceted member of the New York City design community for over 25 years since graduating from Pratt Institute and the High School of Art and Design in New York. He has won over 35 design awards including five Emmy ® Awards for his work in broadcast design. He has also been a designer/art director for CBS TV, Fox 5, and WPIX TV News over the years. His most notable Emmy® was for the original on-air look of NY1 News for Time Warner Cable. An accomplished photographer, his 9/11 photographs are now part of the permanent collection at the New York Public Library, and has been published in magazines and newspapers. Presently a freelance designer, his recent projects include meeting and graphics design for large corporations. He also has a line of ceramic pet products for Villeroy & Boch, as well as a line of stationery for teNeues Publishing.
Neil Ryder Hoos, a native New Yorker has been photographing the city for over 25 years. His series titled Indelible Layers, is a textural look at New York and continues to be one of Vernakular's best selling series with the Manhole Cover as its most popular. He works for a major Publishing house in New York City and spends much of his free time traveling and photographing the textures of urban areas around the world and playing handball.
Jeff Immel is a Chicago-based photographer who has several popular Vernakular images including the quirky Baby and Dead Dog.
Yuanchung Lee considers himself a photography late bloomer. Despite taking up photography only a few years ago, he has done so with verve and dedication spending most of his free time photographing around New York City and while traveling around the world. His images in Chiapas region of Mexico and New York City exemplify his excellent eye for color, composition, and light. You can view his other work on his photo blog: yuanchunglee.blogspot.com.
Judd Rench has lived in Portland, Oregon most of his life, but the natural beauty hasn't kept him local. Judd actively travels the world every chance he gets finding inspiration in places such as Cuba, Thailand, Australia, and Guatemala. This might explain how an undergraduate degree became a ten year endeavor. Always on the look out for something "that would make a great photo" he proves this with his great eye for beauty in seemingly ordinary subjects. An avid scuba diver, Judd also frequently frustrates himself by trying to coax his camera to create appealing underwater images.
Allyn Rippin is a thought-provoking photographer who creates beautiful, soft images that exude emotion. She was inspired by her decade long stint in NYC, as well as travels to a variety of places around the world including Turkey, Iceland, Indonesia. She is currently based in Atlanta pursuing a graduate degree at Georgia Tech University. She can be reached via her website at www.allynrippin.com
Zwea-Tiak Tan, a native of Singapore, has a quirky eye for the seemingly ordinary. He considers himself the ultimate amateur photographer with thousands of images in his archives - all with a distinct pattern of tongue-in-cheek kitsch. Onne of his images, Dude Motel, is one of Vernakular's most popular. His outlook can be attributed to his experience living abroad, first in Tokyo for four years and currently in San Francisco. Zwea is also a regular contributor to www.superfuture.com, a guide to hip, urban living.
If you would like information on any photographer showcased by Vernakular, please forward any correspondence to firstname.lastname@example.org.