Robert Cooper


It never really occurred to me that the fact that I grew up in a house built in 1872 in the historic district of Savannah had influenced my love for old things generally, and specifically, photography. 

It might have seemed obvious. My earliest inspirations were pioneer photographers like Julia Margaret Cameron, Frederick Evans, Henry Peach Robinson the folks who were really making it up as they went. Part of the attraction was the painterly disposition of the artist making the photograph and part of it was the inherent character of the medium. Everything seemed to slow down and early in my training I began to attempt to catch that pioneer spirit.

I have been a professional photographer for most of my adult life. I became a newspaper photographer while attending Georgia Southern University where I studied photography with Jessica Hines. I worked at the newspaper in Statesboro for several years back when we developed our own film. I was involved with Georgia Press Association and won a number of awards for my photography.

Just prior to Y2K, I moved to Florida to be photo editor at the The Panama City News Herald where I continued to be involved in photojournalism at a state and national level. I was fortunate to shoot freelance assignments for a number of large media outlets.

I moved back to my hometown in 2012  and have been a freelancer here specializing in professional headshots, real estate and aerial drone photography. My good friend Pete Christman who was one of the charter members of the photography faculty at Savannah College of Art and Design taught me platinum printing, But it was when I attended a wet plate collodion workshop hosted by Chris Morgan that I felt like I found the medium that conveyed what I love about the work of those early masters.

I have been working in wet plate for about four years and teaching for two. I have several cameras and a portable darkroom and I love it. I really enjoy sharing this process with new people. That amazed, “WOW,” never gets old.