Shoutout Arizona Magazine
We had the good fortune of connecting with Robert McKendrick and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Robert, as a parent, what do you feel is the most meaningful thing you’ve done for them?
I believe the most important thing I have taught my children is that you will get out of life what you put into it. Life is not easy and there will always be challenges. Some challenges will seem like they cannot be overcome. But no matter how hard life knocks you down get back up. Always hold you head up. The way you handle these things in life will define you it is your strength’
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I worked for an electrical repair facility for 32 years. We repaired electric motors, generators and transformers. When companies lose a motor in a key application they can be losing from thousands to millions of dollars a day. It was our job to get them back online.
I started in the company as an electrician and moved up to General Manager. After 32 years of 6 to 7 days a week and 10 to 12 hour days, I had to get away from the stress.
I did not want to get into another situation to where I had to work so many hours. I knew it was not going to be easy but a life change was needed. There had to be more to life than working all the time.
Since I was a boy my release was taking of and hiking in the mountains behind my home in Helper, Utah. I love how being in nature brings a calmness. I would tell people of things I saw or did and they would tell me that they would love to see it. So I started taking photos and sharing what I was finding.
All my friends and family encouraged me to sell and share my work. The biggest challenge I had to overcome was believing in myself. Believing that my work could be appreciated and felt by someone else. Believing that a stranger could connect with my images and gain some peace of their own.
Gallery Moab is a co-op gallery so the artists take turns working the gallery. I have seen the reactions of people looking at my art. I have seen people breakdown in tears to shear joy from my art and the art of others in the gallery. Art has such a healing quality to it. That is something I was missing in my life and now I get to share that beauty with other people.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
This country that I live in is incredibly diverse and beautiful. In the morning I can be in the Alpine meadows of the mountains at 10,000 feet. Looking at deer and elk, lupin and aspen across beautiful mountain slopes. That afternoon I can be on the desert floor of the southwest.
I would start in the mountains of central Utah. Finding different meadows and lakes to camp each night. Moving from the mountains to the high desert country of southern Utah. Places Like Cedar Breaks and Bryce Canyon. Then to get away from the crowds we would spend some days exploring the beautiful country of southern Utah and Northern Arizona. I would love to do this during the new moon cycle to show of the dark skies that Utah and Arizona have. So many stars in the sky. Coyote Buttes, White Pockets and the Vermillion Cliffs are incredible.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
While going through a difficult time in my life I was looking for a change that would bring meaning and peace into my life. I love nature and enjoy taking photographs of wildlife and landscape. Kristi Peterson is a good friend and she encouraged me to join a gallery. Kristi would tell me how much emotion and spiritual energy my images. had.
So I joined “Gallery Moab” in Moab, Utah. The artist in the gallery accepted me and helped me grow. My photography started to move to a new level. The support and association from so many talented people was incredible.
The growth I gained in the gallery gave me the confidence to learn more. I contacted Royce Bair. Royce is an exceptional photographer and educator., specializing in Nightscapes photography. This is a phrase that Royce came up with to describe his landscape photographer with the night sky. Our first outing was shooting in the Desert of Northern Arizona. Since then I have assisted Royce with the annual Nightscape conference and workshops.
During this time I met a special woman. Becky became my friend and gave me the support and creative drive to continue. She is now my wife and continues to give me tremendous support.
This is such a great question and well phrased. I could list so many more people that have stood by me. My family and friends that encouraged me to follow my dreams at the age of 55.
Nominate Someone: ShoutoutArizona is built on recommendations and