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Second Sense - Beyond Vision Loss

Drew Bedo

I came to large format photography late in life. Trained in diagnostic imaging at Baylor College of Medicine, I performed Nuclear Medicine procedures on patients using digital imaging equipment. It is here that I developed an interest in large format photography as a low-tech, hands-on counterpoint to my daily work. I retired in 2002 after a medical condition rendered me legally blind in a matter of days leaving me with residual vision in which I can see muted shapes with subdued colors and in one eye, some detail in a narrow field of image. Today, I create fine-art photographic images with traditional materials using antique and vintage large format cameras.

Despite having no useful vision in one eye while the other has severely degraded vision, I see. There are some things that I can no longer do at all and others, like photography, that I must now do differently. Visual impairment has made photography more than a creative act for me. Photography gas become a therapeutic affirmation of my ability to adapt to, adjust to (and accept) my condition. Photography has become more than another way of seeing, for me, photography IS seeing.

As I See It: A Self-Portrait

Window Light: Cades Cove

Dad's Glasses