Take 10: David Vernon

In 1975, David Vernon picked up his first semi-serious camera—a Pentax Spotmatic—and he’s been hooked ever since. Though he’s worn many different hats in his lifetime, for nearly four decades, the one place he could almost always be found was behind a camera. Born and raised in Pittsburgh, Vernon graduated with a degree in statistics from the University of Wyoming before eventually making his way to Peoria. He earned a master’s degree in computer science from Bradley University and spent time as a software professional, freelance photographer, and Caterpillar corporate photographer before opening Conver/Vernon Photo Workshops and Tours with his business partner, Ann Conver. He and his wife, Kevin, live in Delavan with their four cats. Find a portfolio of his work at escapesphoto.com.

  1. Favorite vacation spot: As transplanted Midwesterners, we’ve taken quite a shine to the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island, where we’ve been going twice a year for almost 15 years… and always for the awesome Murder Mystery Weekend in October.
     
  2. Secret ambition: White House photographer would be a pretty awesome gig.
     
  3. Most impulsive thing I’ve ever done: Waited until the last second before trusting my instincts and jumping through a closing elevator door (I was nimble then). Ended up following the girl I would marry. Good choice.
     
  4. What is the trait you most deplore in yourself? It’s 11pm, time for bed. Okay—midnight—but no later. I SWEAR I’m going to bed at 1am. How did it get to 2am already??? I am a night person who spent many years in a morning person’s garb.
     
  5. What’s the best thing about being you? The eternal struggle between genius and boyish good looks… No, that’s not it—it’s my sense of humor. Yes, definitely.
     
  6. What was your first car? A 1970 Chevy Nova—in green. My second car? A 1970 Chevy Nova—in blue. My extended family had a thing for hand-me-down Chevy Novas.
     
  7. What app can’t you live without? It boggles the mind as a photographer how many times I need to know when and where the sun will rise and set. The Photographer’s Ephemeris is a great tool for that.
     
  8. Favorite album: Albums come and albums go, but always near the top of the list is Bruce Springsteen’s Darkness on the Edge of Town. Just relentless energy and characters.
     
  9. What are your quirky habits? Knowing the difference between “it’s” and “its.” And the difference between “then” and “than.” And what an Oxford comma is. Yes, I like grammar. It’s almost better than photography, music and traveling.
     
  10. What’s your idea of perfect happiness? Feeding my addiction to photography: a camera, a beautiful place, the unique quiet of nature, and friends and/or my spouse to share it with. a&s

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