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Robert Wheater

a personal photoblog

Portrait Painting

Portrait painting has been my focus for the last year. Here are a few of what I think are my best.

Pet Painting

Painting of a Girl and her Dog.

Painting of Jessica Dru

Painting of Jessica Dru

Painting of an Old Woman

Painting of an Old Woman

Portrait Painting for Practice

Portrait Painting for Practice

I’ve been pretty busy focused on painting portraits, painting pets and pretty much just really focusing on art. I did a project recently called 100 Paintings in 300 Days. If you look at the previous paintings on this blog you will see how far I have come in skill. I love the portraits.

I am really working toward changing this blog to focus on my personal life. For my professional website visit: Also for a behind the scenes look at my art visit:

I AM AVAILABLE.  I am an award winning portrait artist in Central California. If you want truly extraordinary and unique art email me today.

Long Period of Inactivity

This is my personal blog, if you are looking for my professional page go to Robert Wheater and check it out. Here I share everyday life stuff and other work.

I apologize for the massive period of inactivity for those that follow this blog. I have been busy. It seems every week I notice 2-3 new local photographers being advertised on Facebook asking me to ‘like’ their page. Most of it is definite amateur photos from someone who just got a camera. In Visalia, there just really isn’t room for this many photographers. I have altered my business to make a move into painting. This is something few people can do as well as I can and I love it just as much.

I am a non-studio photographer. I don’t really like studio environments. I love the outdoors, I love going out somewhere and letting things happen. That is the great difference between the studio and outdoor – things happen. I have had Vandenberg Air Force Base do a missile test in the middle of a bride and groom shoot – so I have this missile launch in the background of the shoot, I have had a marching band become a background – all these random things that happen. Well, I just didn’t get enough business and I am not willing to try and swim against all the women that entered the photographer market. Yes, I have noticed not a single man has recently entered the market. And 99% of the photography clients are women. I find it difficult to market to women, so I don’t I just be me and get work. It’s not enough though and most of them will not ever turn a profit and if they are here for money they will be sadly disappointed – it’s not about money, it’s about a passion.

So, I am moving to a new passion – painting portraits and landscapes. Something that few can actually do.  Here is one of my recent paintings, it is unfinished and untitled from the end of 2011. It was a personal project that I stopped to do work on a commissioned piece. I am going to use this site to talk about my paintings and life in general. I wanted to start something for my personal life – digital is definitely here to stay and I can look back on this and read it later, probably for decades to come – if not at least I can download all the important stuff and print it :)


Friends in the Fog - Painting 24x36

If you would like to see my professional site, visit – here you will find musings, art and general stuff about my life. This blog was once a professional blog so older posts will be a bit different. Well, thanks for stopping by. Talk to you soon.

Alex | Maternity Session

These two were fun to photograph and I am so happy that I was able to be their photographer, even though they had to take quite a little drive to use me as their photographer. I hope to photograph them as their children grow. My maternity sessions are non-studio lifestyle pictures. I don’t do many bare belly pictures and I try to focus more on the relationship of mother and father and show that there is indeed a baby coming.

Braun Family | Rural MiniSession

The Braun Family was awesome to say the least. I swear I have been lucky with all the clients I have photographed. I hear other photographers talk about clients that are hard to work with… I don’t know what that is like.

Christina and Boys | Mini-Session

Great session with Christina and her boys. These are the type of images that come with my mini-sessions. I used to call them SnapRiot sessions but have decided to offer them as mini-sessions for only $50. Click on the Contact link at the top of my blog to setup a mini-session.

Scott | Business Portrait

When I am commissioned to create a business portrait, I always aim to do something that represents a person and with different styles of images. Every single person is their own brand and while many people don’t really care about the picture they use, I am someone people come to when they care. First, I try and key in on who you are as a brand. What do you stand for? What values do you have and what do you do? I never just take a quick head shot.
In the images below, you will see Scott. He makes wine and loves it (thanks for the wine by the way) and we set off and decided to shoot in a vineyard. I advise to any professional that they update their business portrait once every 2-3 years and keep it current and do not use black and white.
I see these black and white business portraits on color business cards. Don’t do it, everyone does. Business portraits for office professionals are best photographed within the office or where people would meet – a further connection in the image that helps a professional stand out. I especially love working with business owners and showing their business within the images – in vibrant and powerful images. Business images should be power images. An image of the owner of a salon should be softer and more fashion forward. It is attention to these details that make a business portrait that will stand leagues above your competition and have an editorial/advertising feel to them. Remember you can click images on my blog to view a larger version full screen.


Kym | Portraits

I don’t publish client work on the internet because almost all of my clients prefer privacy, so in order to get images to show on my blog and on the internet I use models and friends. Kym had never modeled before and wanted to try it out. Here are shots of her done in my edgy fashion/glamor style. I have only been a professional photographer for a year, starting right after art school at The Academy of Art University in San Francisco.
There were many challenges in this shoot, wind being the worst. Because I rarely shoot in studio and prefer environmental and on location sessions. Kym was great and we got some great shots. Remember that you can click images to view a larger version.




New Brochure [download here]

This is my new brochure. There is a wedding version of the brochure coming soon. I have revised all of my wedding services and the new wedding photography one will be up in a week.

Click here for the Robert Wheater Photography brochure

Military Wives and Girlfriends | Memorial Day

I was thinking of something unique I could offer for Memorial Day aside from my normal 10% off for military and veterans. I thought about something that is very usable but really is exciting for me and my feeling of creating heirlooms. So, from now until Memorial Day (May 31) I am offering something unique. Contemporary Vintage Wallet Portraits.
Trying to embrace a classic portrait style mixed with my contemporary style, I wanted to create an image that could be used for portraits from wives and girlfriends to their husbands overseas. The portrait session is only $25 and I have a wide array of picture styles to send from portraits on archival art paper which gives the images tactile feeling also. This makes a great gift. I also offer a much more sexy maxim-magazine session starting at $100.
Your session must be scheduled prior to Memorial Day 2010 (May 31). I wish I could keep the offer up all year because these are truly fun.

Wallet style shots are edited to look similar to the image on the right. This is a before/after of original photo and then the contemporary vintage edit

Wallet style shots are edited to look similar to the image on the right. This is a before/after of original photo and then the contemporary vintage edit.

Some of the final product ideas for these sessions are:

Fine Art Archival Prints

Framed Desk Prints

4×6 Hard Print (the fine art print is bonded to a Masonite backing)

5×5 Gallery Wrap

It is a good idea that we talk about your final product before we actually have the session because we can have a general direction to go. If you want a 5×5 Metallic Gallery Wrap we are probably going to shoot a completely different way than a 20×30 fine art paper print. Yes, almost all my products are focused on creating an heirloom. I don’t print any inkjet prints, I still make real photographs and focus on the end product of my photography. They are not cheap and will last generations. 90% of photographers use inkjet prints, not me. Ask me why if you are interested in knowing the differences.

Visalia Photographers

A little over a year ago, while still in art school I was thinking of ways to gather with other photographers. There wasn’t one. So, I set out to creating one. In the beginning, I was a little frustrated and didn’t really think it would work. How many people in the area wanted to be a part of a photography group?

It was when we were almost at 100 members when I decided to add a fee of $10/year. This fee would serve to find the more active photographers and get more people involved… it worked. We had an average turn out of 5-6 members before the fee and around 10 people per meeting after the fee was added. Membership dropped but those that dropped had never attended a meetup. The active members paid the small dues and started coming to the meetups.

A lot of people don’t understand how competitive the photography industry is. Ten years ago, there were less than 10 photographers in the Visalia metro area. Today there are at least 30 that are listed on Myspace, Facebook or have their own websites. A lot of professionals are very secretive and choose to avoid socializing with other professionals because of how hard it is to compete these days. My photographer network in this group has only served to increase my business. I have learned a lot and others have learned from me. That’s what the group is for.

There are over 50 members of the Meetup group, most of these are active members. There are several professionals from photojournalists to wedding photographers. There are lots of amateurs and people that just want to meet other like-minded artists. This group will continue to grow and I really like the direction it is headed.

Go check us out. Click on the picture to go now.