Biography

The Story of Jay Stock

Master Photographer Jay Stock is recognized worldwide as a premier photographic artist. He has amassed more awards and decorations for his work than any other photographer, and his limited edition photographs and portfolios have received national and international acclaim. However, his humble introduction to photography began at the age of 18, as a hobby while serving in the army.

Upon completing his time in the service, Jay married, had a family and worked in the Coal Mines of Ohio. His interest in photography grew, culminating in his decision to attend The Progressive School of Photography in New Haven, Connecticut. Upon completion of his studies there, Jay returned home and to his former job. At this point in time photography remained a side job using a converted kitchen at night for his darkroom and a living room as his camera room. As time past Jay's clientele grew and his dream of being an accomplished photographic artist was well on its way to becoming a reality.

Jay opened a small studio in eastern Ohio some fifty years ago, and from the beginning he specialized in photographing people. He has since traveled to five continents and created photographic studies of such diverse peoples as the Amish, the Coal Miners of South Wales, the cultures of 30 American Indian Tribes, 14 African Tribes and the people and scenes of all Provinces of Canada. His skill, dedication and artistry were a primary force in elevating portrait photography to an art form.

A key to Jay's successful career as a photographic artist is his constant pursuit of knowledge. He has had the distinct pleasure and privilege to study and learn from some of the leading photographic artists of our time. These individuals not only had an impact on Jay's photographic creations, but they inspired him to share his knowledge of his art as a teacher and a lecturer. Jay likewise has gained great knowledge and inspiration from his study of the Master Painters of yesterday. Those of you familiar with the works of Rembrandt, Monet, Degas, Sargent and Rockwell will recognize their influence on Jay's artistry.

Jay is one of the few living members of the Photographic Hall of Fame. The Professional Photographers of America have awarded him their "Master of Photography" and "Photographic Craftsman" Degrees, as well as their Professional Photographers National Service Award. He is a Fellow of the American Society of Professional Photographers, the British Institute of Professional Photography and Britain's Royal Society of Arts. Additionally Jay was the premier recipient of the ASP's International Award; Eastman Kodak's Steuben Crystal Apple Award and the Professional Photographers of California's Award of Excellence. These three distinctions are further explained on Jay's Degree's, Awards and Distinctions page on this site.

Perhaps the most prestigious recognition of Jay's contribution to portraiture occurred in 1975, when he became the first photographer to exhibit his work at the United States Capitol Building. This exhibit consisted of more than one hundred and twenty five limited edition prints, which included studies of African, European and Native American peoples. A portion of this exhibition, entitled "Faces of Today's American Indian" was exhibited at the White House. A limited edition, leather bound portfolio of selected works, from this exhibition, was presented to our Country during our nation's BI-Centennial year at a White House ceremony in Jacqueline Kennedy Rose Garden. This limited edition portfolio is also a part of the Carpenter Center for Visual Arts Collection at Harvard University.

In addition to Jay's contribution to photographic documentation, he has contributed to photographic education on a national and international level. He has taught at such noted institutions as the Rochester Institute of Technology, Syracuse University, North Carolina University, the Hallmark School of Photography, the United Kingdom's British Guild of Photography and at Chalon sur Soane, France (European Headquarters of Professional Photographers). Jay also serves as teacher to over 250 national and international professional photographers who are members of his educational study groups.

Jay is a prolific author whose articles and photographs have appeared in leading photographic magazines and books, including Eastman Kodak's Professional Portrait Technique Books and his own two publications Inspirational Impressionistic Images and Visions of Our Native American Heritage.

In addition to previously cited exhibitions, Jay's work has been displayed at the Photography Hall of Fame in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma and in gallery exhibitions throughout the country. Museum exhibitions are presently being scheduled for the year 2000 and beyond.

While photography may be his passion, it is Jay's love of the human spirit, which keeps this passion alive. Today Jay dedicates his energy to creating and printing his silver
black & white images, working with his educational study groups and travelling for worldwide assignments. If you have an interest in studying with Jay or commissioning him for a national or international assignment, then please complete the contact form on this site and submit. He would like for you to be apart of the continuing Jay Stock Story.