Joe Darin

darin waterfallI started taking photographs when I was in college. It was a way for me to take photos of my family in California where we had just moved from Illinois and show them to my relatives back in Illinois and vice versa. My first shots were not great and I learned from my mistakes. I took a photo class in college and then a couple of weekend classes after that. From there, I learned mostly on my own by reading photography books and magazines and experimenting, trying to capture photos like I saw in these publications. I still spend time on the Internet studying my craft. I think it is a life long job.

In 2003, I decided it was time to sell my photographs – it had been a long time since I last did. For those of you who want my “credentials,” here they are as explained by a third party.

Joe Darin’s two careers in the arts began at Notre Dame in the 1960’s. As he trained his sensibilities for an architectural career he was also training his eye for composition, light, color and emotional response. So while he has only recently begun presenting his photographs to the public, his development as a photographer spans the same 45 years as his career as an architect and designer. Of those years he says, “My first shots were not great and I learned from my mistakes. I took a photo class in college and then a couple of weekend classes after that. From there, I learned mostly on my own by reading photography books and magazines and experimenting, trying to capture what I saw in photos. I still spend time on the Internet studying my craft. It is a life long passion.”

In his architectural career, Joe managed construction of San Diego’s Horton Plaza Sam Goody store with a $300,000 art budget. It was published in the Retail Store Image Magazine and won a Graphic Design Magazine Award.

Meanwhile, his photographs were being published in books such as “Finishing the Figure,” and in Japan, “The Love Formed Human.” He prepared a book proposal of his photographs of the Mining Towns of the West. In magazines, his photographs appeared in the United States, Germany and the Netherlands. A significant photo was included in the “Holiday Treasures at the White House” brochure.

While Vice President of Laguna Bernardo Management Co., he developed the 75 Acre, 867 unit Bernardo Vista Del Lago residential project, the Morada Condominiums, Clubhouse and Recreation Center, a 20 Acre, 350,000 sq. ft. Park Terrace commercial site, the Rancho Bernardo Branch of the San Diego Library, the Center for Health Services medical offices, the Soup Plantation Restaurant and Offices, the Family Fitness Center, and Cornerstone Court in San Diego, CA

Joe’s designs and photographs for web sites include works of the famous artist Margaret Cannon Wilson, wife of Representative Robert Wilson, artist Connie Fox of Jatayu Jewelry, products of “On the Path,” an online commercial store and “Thought Wave,” for Dr. Dana Pollack. He has also designed the web sites for his wife Jane Darin and for Jennie Cornsweet, an energetic healer.

As President of Darin Architecture, Joe redesigned Polo Ralph Lauren stores in Honolulu, Hawaii, Salt Lake City, UT, Boulder, CO, Scottsdale, AZ and La Jolla, Palo Alto, Beverly Hills and Costa Mesa in CA, the Clubhouse and Golf Shop and a 300 unit resort hotel at La Costa Resort, Carlsbad, CA, the 420 room Lafayette Hotel and the California School of Professional Psychology in San Diego, CA, the Clubhouse, Horse Barn, Convention Center, Administration Offices, Sales Pavilion, Airport Lounge and Gift Shop for Warner Springs Ranch, CA, an 80 unit motel in Solana Beach, the Gingerbread & Dottie Doolittle Children’s Store and Gentlemen’s Quarters in Palo Alto CA. His designs for a clothing store in Beverly Center, Robert Phillips Beverly, were subsequently published in Interior Design Magazine. He also designed the remodel of an entire block of stores on State Street in Carlsbad, CA.

All the while Joe was busy taking photographs, some from his architectural experiences, some from his travels in Russia, the Caribbean, India, Mexico, Italy and around the United States. He exhibited his photographs in the Boehm Gallery at Palomar College, San Marcos, the La Jolla Village Gallery, La Jolla, the Southwestern College Gallery, the Westwood Festival of the Arts in Westwood, Fair Oaks Gallery in South Pasadena and the Church of Religious Science in Glendale, all in California. Some shows Joe has done include the Festival of Fine Art of the Artists Guild at the West Wing of the San Diego Museum of Art, Walnut Creek Artwalk at the Dollerious Delights Gallery and Taste of Arts by the Bay in Chula Vista, CA.

As Vice President of The Boardroom, Joe took charge of the development of the Boardroom Executive Suites Hotels in Dallas, Houston and San Antonio, TX. He also was a consultant on a 180 and a 300 unit condominium project for the Irvine Company. He designed the Gene Autry Hotel Convention Center in Palm Springs, the Eagle Rock Baptist Church, the El Toro Wells Fargo Bank, Medical Office Buildings in Glendale, Red Robin Restaurants and K-Mart Stores in various locations, the Gymnasium Equipment Corp of Palos Verdes, and Glendale View Condominiums all in California. He also worked on Foothill College in Cupertino, De Anza College in Sunnyvale.

Just as you are thinking that Joe has spent his career doing only commercial buildings, you need to know that he has also designed custom homes in Point Loma, Oceanside, Fallbrook, Bonita, LA Costa, Poway, Escondido, Encinitas, Borrego Springs, Solana Beach, South Pasadena, Diamond Bar, Laguna Beach, and Vista, all in California.

Rounding out his career in photography, Joe is always ready to give talks and workshops which he has done in Santa Fe, NM, Portland, OR, and Billings, MT as well as San Diego, CA. Knowing the difficulty many artist have struggling with presenting their art well in photographs for competitions and promotion, Joe has developed a seminar online called, “How to Photograph Your Art.”

After one year of undergraduate architectural studies at the University of Illinois, Champaign/Urbana, IL, Joe transferred to the University of Notre Dame where he earned two degrees: Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Arts and Bachelor of Science in Architecture. To enhance his growing love of photography, he attended the Nikon School of Photography in Irvine, CA. Later he rounded out his studies with two further workshops: Photographing Natural Scenes and Portrait Photography in Natural Settings. His other postgraduate studies have included courses in Finance, Communication, Internet Web Design, Computer Applications, and Business Management.

Joe’s memberships have included the AIA, (American Institute of Architects), the Artists Guild of the San Diego Museum of Art where he has served on the Board of Directors and currently serves as President and the La Jolla Art Association. His licenses include an Architectural License and Building Contractors License in the State of California.

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