About Robert

Robert McClin­tock was born in Brat­tle­boro, Ver­mont in 1958, the son of a hair­dresser, actor, artist, musi­cian, singer, dancer father and an Arthur Mur­ray dancer, fash­ion­ista mother from Brook­lyn, NY. His par­ents met in New York City and moved to Ver­mont in 1954. He grew up in Wilm­ing­ton, Ver­mont not far from the Mt Snow Ski Area where ski­ing was sec­ond nature to him.

He was always attracted to the arts and espe­cially pho­tog­ra­phy, his grand­fa­ther was a seri­ous ama­teur pho­tog­ra­pher in New York City and two of his aunts were fash­ion photo styl­ists in Man­hat­tan in the 1960’s through the 1980’s. Every sum­mer he would go to New York and hang around at the stu­dios of big time fash­ion pho­tog­ra­phers Jon Abbott and Ray Kell­man load­ing their Has­sel­blads and grate­fully assist­ing the ladies under­wear photo shoots for Sears and Macy’s Catalogs.

RIGHT: Robert’s short lived career in mod­el­ing on Ellis Island 1964. Some­body stuck a Brownie in his hand as a prop and it all came together. He dis­cov­ered he was on the wrong side of the cam­era! (Photo by Jon Abbott for Sears & Roe­buck, unknown female super model named Claudia)

Robert actu­ally got his first pay­ing “com­mer­cial” gig shoot­ing head shots for a the­ater com­pany at the age of 16 and never looked back.

He grew up in Wilm­ing­ton, Ver­mont but grad­u­ated from Ver­mont Acad­emy in Sax­tons River, Vt then briefly went to the Uni­ver­sity of Ver­mont where every­one thought he’d enroll in med­ical school, but after one year of the col­lege party scene he dropped out and hit the road and worked in the restau­rant busi­ness as a waiter and bar­tender for the next 15 years. Robert lived in Den­ver, Col­orado for 8 years, where he had his first ware­house stu­dio. He became a spray paint artist but soon dis­cov­ered manip­u­lated Polaroid Art in 1978, he tried liv­ing in Los Ange­les for a quick year then went back to Den­ver and finally returned to Ver­mont after his father’s death in 1985 . After 15 years work­ing in the restau­rant busi­ness he cleaned up his act and left it behind in 1988. He knew he could make a liv­ing in the arts and declared him­self a “pro­fes­sional” pho­tog­ra­pher, he printed busi­ness cards and opened a small stu­dio in Brat­tle­boro, Ver­mont which proved very suc­cess­ful and pro­vided on the job train­ing. He “spe­cial­ized ” in what­ever the next phone call asked for and pho­tographed numer­ous babies, bands, head­shots, fam­ily por­traits and over 100 wed­dings. Even­tu­ally Robert evolved into stu­dio work in which he quickly proved his abil­ity, work­ing for over 12 years in adver­tis­ing and edi­to­r­ial work in the north­east and even­tu­ally in Wash­ing­ton DC and Baltimore.

robert mcclintock photo

He has always had a strong incli­na­tion towards the fine arts and is entirely self-taught. Both par­ents were very sup­port­ive. Start­ing 1978 while in Den­ver, McClintock’s art work mainly con­sisted of manip­u­lated and hand col­ored SX-70 Polaroid illus­tra­tions which even­tu­ally appeared in many national and regional mag­a­zines as well as gal­leries and shows in the U.S. In 1992, his work was accepted into the pres­ti­gious Inter­na­tional Polaroid Col­lec­tion, a tour­ing exhibit which fea­tures artists who use Polaroid products.

Cur­rently his Polaroids are appear­ing at the Tokyo Met­ro­pol­i­tan Museum of Pho­tog­ra­phy and Boston’s Pho­to­graphic Resource Cen­ter (PRC) in the Amer­i­can Per­spec­tives Exhibit.

As dig­i­tal pho­tog­ra­phy emerged as a new medium, McClin­tock became inter­ested early on. He pur­chased his first dig­i­tal cam­era (an Apple Quick­take 100) in 1996 and quickly got to work. He imme­di­ately enjoyed the truly instant grat­i­fi­ca­tion and spon­tane­ity while shoot­ing. Over the years he has shot with Nikon cam­eras, from the Coolpix 990, 995, the D100, D70 and cur­rently the Nikon D200D300.

He has shot over 50,000 dig­i­tal pic­tures and cre­ated over 500 “Photo-Digital Illus­tra­tions” wherein he paints and col­ors directly onto his pho­tographs in Adobe Pho­to­shop on Apple com­put­ers using a Wacom Tablet. Robert is adamant that his work is not com­puter gen­er­ated and NO stock pho­to­shop fil­ters are used! His expe­ri­ence with Pho­to­shop was not exten­sive but he learned quickly while free­lanc­ing at a busy dig­i­tal photo stu­dio in Bal­ti­more and after many hours of exper­i­ment­ing at the com­puter he devel­oped his dis­tinct and new style wherein each image is worked over by hand inch by inch as a tra­di­tional painter would do. His strong com­po­si­tion skills learned as a com­mer­cial pho­tog­ra­pher go a long way in mak­ing a great image.

In 1999 he began sell­ing his work at many local out­door street fairs and fes­ti­vals includ­ing Baltimore’s Artscape and The Fells Point Fes­ti­val, as a money mak­ing ven­ture and some­what as a mar­ket test to see how the work would be received by the public.

His suc­cess in cap­tur­ing what the peo­ple wanted led in Novem­ber of 2002 to his open­ing a stu­dio and gallery in Baltimore’s his­toric Fed­eral Hill at 50 East Cross Street fea­tur­ing over 150 images from his “Bal­ti­more Seen Col­lec­tion” plus his unique Cat and Dog images.

The retail gallery proved to be a suc­cess and led to an expan­sion to a sec­ond space on Charles Street. He kept the Cross Street gallery open as the “show­room” and the Charles St address turned into his work­ing stu­dio and pro­duc­tion space.

As Robert’s col­lec­tion grew and with the new addi­tion of large can­vas pieces he again needed more space. Fed­eral Hill was a great loca­tion but he really needed to con­sol­i­date the two loca­tions and also expand.

After a short search he found a great new loca­tion in Fell’s Point on the water­front which was actu­ally 10 times larger than the two Fed­eral Hill loca­tions. In April of 2006 he opened the new space at 1809 Thames Street near the Anne St wharf. The new space has proven to be a great move and has intro­duced his work to a much wider audi­ence both locally and to tourists vis­it­ing Bal­ti­more from all over the world.

Robert lives with his wife Sue, their 3 cats, and their pit mix, Super Lou, in Baltimore’s eclec­tic Charles Village.