Featured Post

ZION NATIONAL PARK UTAH This image was made during the fall of 2015 in SW Utah. It was one of three parks that we visited on this tri...

Saturday, December 29, 2012


I was recently informed by the Virginia Historical Society in Richmond, Virginia that the present exhibition of my Appalachian images will be replaced by a different selection of originals from the Jeffers' collection. The present exhibition is scheduled to run through January 28, 2013.

The exhibition has drawn so much favorable attention that it was decided by the museum staff that the show would be extended by several additional months. THE SECOND ROTATION OPENS FEBRUARY 11, 2013 MONDAY MORNING AND RUNS THROUGH MAY 26 OF 2013. 

This image was recently sent to me by a friend from the Eastern Shore of Virginia.

To view a larger image, left click on the image.

Sunday, December 16, 2012


APPALACHIAN IMAGES  Photographs by Jack Jeffers 

Published by Radford University Art Museum 2005

I still have several dozen new books available from this printing, and they are priced at $25 plus $5 shipping.  They are all signed by the artist. This printing has been showing  up on the Internet as a rare book, which I find to be of interest. Also a bit pricey.

To view a larger image of these two books, left click on the above photograph.

And, as you will note below, Mr. Ehrlicher has given it a big thumbs up.

5.0 out of 5 stars An American showpiece-timeless era, May 28, 2011
E. J. Ehrlicher (Chicago Illinois, U.S.A.) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Appalachian Images - Photographs by Jack Jeffers (Paperback)
I bought the book. What an endless joy to review the timeless photos of Jack Jeffers. The Appalachian people and landscapes he photographs in black and white are so beautiful, that one can look and feel the images. Although, so many of his images were taken in the 1970's and 1980's, they look like they could have been taken back in the 1920's, so rustic they seem. The latter part of the book includes photographic images from his current home of Wyoming and they capture the beauty of that state. Jack Jeffers is a towering figure in photography. I recommend this book wholeheartedly to anyone who enjoys nature and a timeless era.

APPALACHIAN BYWAYS    Published 1984 

There was a press run of five thousand copies when I was working at Radford University, and most of those books have found new homes. I have maybe a hundred left.  I also make it a point to sign each book.

This price of this book is $25.00 plus $5 for shipping.   

To place an order, contact Jeffers at   info@jeffersfineart.com 

Saturday, December 8, 2012


This image was made a few miles to the NE of Montrose, Colorado. You don't have to go very far from home to find this common desert dweller. To me, they are lovely trees to photograph and each one has a character of it's own.

I made this image one chilly morning during the winter when the shadow was strung out across the hillside. I was struck by the simplicity of the setting, and that is one of the things I look for when making photographs.

To view a larger image, double click the left button on the mouse.

Thursday, November 29, 2012


A couple of weeks ago I took the dogs for a walk in the vicinity of where the Black Canyon of the Gunnison passes through Peach Valley. I don't know where the name peach came from because as far as I'm concerned, this area is little more than rugged high country desert. The vegetation is basically juniper, pinion pines and cactus. Plus a lot of rock.

You know what? I almost left my camera at home. As much as I continually stress having the camera along, I almost broke my own standing rule.

A group of trail riders and their three mules were just getting set to take off along the trail to do some seasonal trail maintenance. I had barely parked my truck and told the dogs to stay in the vehicle before the group hit the trail. I was in such a hurry that I just grabbed the camera and quick set it to automatic, and when I raised that camera, the leader of the pack was already in my viewfinder. I made three rapid exposures and this was the best. All of the elements are as near perfect as you can get. In fact, having his hand raised added that little something extra.

I chose to present this image as a sepia black and white. You just cannot beat a nice black and white when working in this country at this time of year.

To view a larger presentation, left click on the image above.

Monday, October 15, 2012


Often, a nice image appears right in front of you.

Yesterday, I took Danny and Bella out to the Adobe Hills for a walk and some good runs, and they got both. The temperature has been in the low seventies lately, and the sky was a dark western blue. In other words, a lovely day.

On the way out we passed a corn field and a couple of cottonwoods. I missed this opportunity going in because, at the time, I was not thinking about my camera, which I just happened to place on the back seat of the truck before we left home. This is about a five mile ride and it is an area which we often frequent.

I realized after I passed the scene that this combination of old corn stalks and two old cottonwood trees had real potential so I stopped the truck and backed up about twenty paces and took a second hard look.

The lens, which stays on this camera, is an 18 to 105mm and it is my all-time favorite. Today, I made several exposures right at the 105 point. Perfect!  And naturally, I had the polarizer on the lens. It pretty much stays there for all of my work, but every so often I take it off. All I had to do, following the transfer into my computer, was to chop a little off the top and bottom. Presto!  Done.

The moral to this outing is simple. Always keep your camera with you when you go out for a hike or just to sit on a rock and watch the sun set. There are times, like yesterday when it pays off.

To view a larger image, click once on the image with the left button.   


Monday, September 3, 2012


A while back, I was sitting in the shade beside our RV when I noticed this lovely forest scene. Fact is, I had viewed it several times before, but today it was becoming something special because of the rapidly changing lighting and shadows caused by the moving clouds. I noticed how nicely balanced the lighting was when the clouds were thin. The end result was what I used to refer to as a 360-degree umbrella. "Soft lighting" in other words.

Needless to say, the tripod and camera came out and this was the final result. In keeping with my silver images from the old days, I converted the color to a nice sepia. Usually, you don"t  have to look very far for nice images. It is often  a simple matter of spotting that elusive image and pulling it out of the total scene. This was such a case where years of practice paid off, and I didn't even have to get off my hind quarters.

Had this image been produced in the lab, it would likely have taken me the better part of several hours to make a finished silver print. Now, with high tech digital technology, the exposed image required but a few moments to produce. Setting up the tripod required more time than the actual making of the image.

Sometimes, I feel more like a computer geek than a photographer, but I still think back to all of those years when I would tote that film camera pack and tripod around for hours at a time and then have to wait for several more hours, or days, before being able to view the finished negative. Personally, I feel that a fine silver print is more in keeping with traditional art than this new technology. But for someone who has a worn out back and has had to deal with three hip replacements, it is a dang sight easier to tote around a digital than a forty pound field pack loaded with film equipment and a heavy tripod.

This way, I can still have fun and preview my finished images immediately after making the exposures. Oh, how times have changed. I do have to question whether this is equal to or better than my collection of silver sulfide exhibition prints. Next image please...

Wednesday, August 15, 2012


The nights are cooling down and in a few weeks, the mountains will look like the above. This has, beyond a doubt, been the hottest summer that I can ever remember, and that goes for my years back east as well. Thank goodness for the low humidity here in Colorado.

To view a larger image, left click on the photograph.

Sunday, July 22, 2012


Someone recently asked me who was the oldest subject that I have ever photographed. Well, I think it might just be this old fellow with the fiddle, and what makes this image more believable is the fact that he was still playing that instrument in front of thousands of spectators, I ran across him at the Old Time Fiddler's Convention in Galax, VA. That would have been twenty-three years ago.  He was warming up while sitting on the tailgate of an old car.

I had to work fast to get this image because he was about ready to go on stage, so to heck with the background. Everything about him was perfect, and he did not try to put on an appearance for me. He was the genuine article, and the best I could learn was that he was well into his nineties, and wow, could he ever make that fiddle sing. 

I have one problem with a blog. It is like writing a book backwards, and I am simply not used to that. If you have not viewed this blog in it's entirety, it might be worth your while to go back to the beginning. Some of my best work would be several miles back down the track, but it might well be worth the hike.

To enlarge this image, left click on the photograph.

An Additional Note:  Several times, people have tried to contact me through the blog. Most of the time, my messages have come back with the note:  undeliverable. It would be much simpler for each of us if you would use our web e-mail, which is:


RU CAMPUS Winter 1992

The weather has been so hot this summer across the country that I decided to post a nice refreshing winter image which I made back in Virginia during the winter of '92. I was working at Radford University at the time, and I was constantly on the outlook for images that would fit nicely into the university magazine or some of their promotional brochures. I think I have already posted several images early on in this blog. Check them out.

I had cased this spot out some time prior to the actual exposure you see here. It was made from atop of the thirteenth story of  Muse Hall. What I needed was a nice snow storm and a body or two on the sidewalk. I had to settle for one person, but it all came together just as I had planned. I waited for the individual to reach the exact spot where you see him, and I made the exposure. I previsualized this image and the exposure was made at the decisive moment.

Left click on image to bring up a larger illustration.

Thursday, July 19, 2012


This is an image that was made back in '77 along a dirt road atop the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia.

Funny how an image like this will suddenly come to mind, but we have had a few discussions in our household lately about aging and how one's life changes to compensate for those things we used to take for granted.

I was sitting here doing some work at the computer yesterday afternoon when my wife Pat walked in and asked me why I was leaning forward in my chair. "Are you having trouble seeing" she said. Damn Right! I thought. Do you see that eight point type down there? Well, I either lean forward and crunch my spine, or I reach over there and grab my trusty magnifying glass. Small type drives me nuts. It has for years. This is why I ask my computer friends to use 14 point type. It reduces the wear and tear on my back. Bottom line, my eyes are not what they used to be, but, by golly, I can still see well enough to do the things I enjoy the most. Like my photography.  It is nice to know that both my Nikon cameras have automatic focusing. And I have actually used this feature. It works great, but it takes some of the fun out of photography. But, when you need it, it is nice to have.

When I made this image, I was using my trusty 2 1/4 camera with square film negatives, and by golly, I could spot the individual hairs on Mr. Wheeler's face. I can still clearly see his face, but I am not sure I could count his whiskers.  I'm certainly not betting my life on it. Then, I would most certainly have to lean way over to the side and grab my trusty magnifying glass. Dad used to use this glass when he was still alive, so it now has a personal attachment to  me.

 I have passed the big 75 mark, and I jokingly refer to myself as an official member of the old fart's club. Besides, a few aches and pains, I am still in pretty good shape.

Mr. Wheeler appears to be about my age, and he wears glasses, so we had a good start in being able to relate to one another. He also has a beautiful old dog that will sit contently beside him, even along a deserted old country road. So, I was immediately drawn to this old fellow from the mountains and his dog. It is one of my most memorable images. 

And while we are on the subject of aging, I will simply say that when I took early retirement from Radford University back in the early nineties, we both became busier than ever, and it has never stopped. And do you know what?  I think that is one of the reasons that my wife and I are still going strong and look forward to many more active years. I may have shifted down a notch from high gear to second, but the old brain is still active, and with my trusty hiking stick in hand, I will head off to the mountains and canyons and return home feeling better than ever; particularly if I captured a few nice photographs along the way. 

How does one feel about life in general at seventy seven?  Well, for me, I simply take it one day at a time and be thankful that I was not hit by a train or a bus. We all know that the ax could fall at any minute; even while crossing the street, and you cannot help but think about it, but there is no point in dwelling on the subject. I see my old friends and acquaintances dropping like flies every year, but in my mind, at least, life goes on, and when  someone asks me which of my images would I pick as my all-time favorite, I would have to say, "The image that I will make tomorrow, or next week." And that is just how matters stand on this Hot day in SW Colorado.  The clock continues to tick.

jj   June 19, 2012

Sunday, June 24, 2012


This image was made near Dallas Divide at an altitude of about 9,500 feet. I took off early in the morning because the weather we've been having lately in Colorado is a record setter, with highs of near a hundred degrees every day. By the time I reached this site, it was already too hot to enjoy my photography, but when you run into a landscape such as this, you have to be prepared to deal with the weather.

I was with our two dogs, Danny and Bella on this trip, and they prefered to stay in the truck while I made my exposure. They, at least, had a little shade for several minutes. I will be heading back to this area about the first of October. That is when the aspen trees will be in their golden glory.

Left click on the image for a much larger view.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012


Yep, the title is correct. I was driving through a spectacular canyon, over near the Utah border about a week ago, and it was a typical dry day (humidity 6%) in the midst of rock walls and lovely old juniper trees. Then, as I rounded a sharp turn in the highway, this scene opened up. A farmer was bailing hay, and right now hay in this part of the country is scarcer than gold nuggets. We are in the midst of a very bad drought. People are selling their cattle because of the weather.

This scene gave me a rare view of what can be done when you are living out in the middle of nowhere. Ah, but there was a small, but nice, river running through this canyon, and the farmer was making the best of a good situation. He was pumping water from the river and field flooding his piece of land. You can left click on this image to enlarge it; then you will see the farmer in the distance. I almost passed this scene by, but it was so unusual and strikingly lovely that I had to add it to my collection of Colorado images.

I always have a stout tripod with me on my outings, and I seldom make an image without it. Keep going, there are a lot of images and short essays posted on this blog, and it will take you a spell to see half of what I have added during the past couple of years.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012


This image was printed in 1998 and hand colored with transparent oils. It was made from a two and a quarter inch negative and it is archival. The size of the original is about sixteen inches square.

The pinion pine was located in the desert of central Wyoming and there was still a bit of wind-blown snow on the ground.

While most of my Appalachian collection has been donated to museums and universities, I have held on to my western collection. In time, it too will be donated to a preselected museum of my choice.

I have been asked about my prices, and I will simply say that for the originals I still have, the prices would range from twenty-five hundred to eight thousand dollars.

All of my work has been limited to a few images per edition, and each original is signed, dated and numbered by the artist. No two originals are identical, and this is because each work of art involves a fresh start, and the toning would vary depending on how I felt on a given day. This not only adds a personal touch, but the collector is assured of having a work of art that is not identical to other prints in the same edition. I was probably one of the first fine art photographers who started making limited editions back during the late sixties. 

 I can recall that there was a lot of bickering and controversy coming from photographers during the early seventies about limiting their work. I felt that it was customary and proper for print makers to limit and document each completed original, regardless of whether it was a photograph or an etching.  Or, for that matter, any other form of printmaking.

I still hold to the same standards today as I did forty-five years ago. I retired from printmaking in 2005.

Jack Jeffers  

  PS:   NO, I do NOT make prints from digital images. I cannot take digital  quite as seriously as I did black and white silver prints. I prefer to view my digital images on a computer screen. HOWEVER, having said that, I do maintain a goodly number of digital images with a stock agency, and I am always open for magazine or book illustrations.

 Just be reminded that I have already completed two books for CD. The first captures the Appalachians and a disappearing way of life which I was able to capture back in the seventies and eighties, The second CD contains my view of the Wyoming Outback. Both books contain numerous stories about my adventures and how many of the images were made.

Visit my web site at:   www. jeffersfineart.com 

Saturday, June 2, 2012


I made this image on June 1, 2012 at about the nine thousand foot level in Colorado's Cimarron Range. Young leaves on the aspen trees take on a brilliant green during their early stages of growth, and I have to plan my field trips accordingly or I will miss this high country sight. This year I was most fortunate in timing my trip at precisely the right date. The weather was perfect, and my field trip resulted in quite a number of high country images featuring rugged peaks and lovely aspen groves.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Field Trip to Escalante Canyon Colorado May 2012


Left click on image to view larger photograph

Saturday, May 5, 2012



This aspen grove and view of the San Juan Range is located west of Ridgway, Colorado at an elevation of about 9500 feet. The image ws made on May 2, 2012.
To view a larger image, left click on above.

Thursday, April 26, 2012


This image was made somewhere in northern Virginia, NW of Warrenton.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

JACK JEFFERS circa 1947


This is one of the first images I ever made and printed.

And it was printed out in my father's old wood shed with a red light hanging over a rafter. Plus, I could only work during moonless nights, because there were no shades over the windows and the numerous cracks in the old wooden walls.

Now, that was primitive. But this hands-on experience was my introduction to my fine art photography which followed some years later.

The camera I used was an old Kodak Brownie 120 roll film with three aperture openings: small, medium and large.

The camera was made about the same time that the Titanic went to the bottom of the Atlantic, and the old wooden tripod was the best I had in terms of a tripod. That old box and tripod eventually fell apart.

Someone recently asked me about my bare feet. Well, in those days many young country boys looked forward to spring because that's when we put our shoes aside for the warm season. I attended a small country school during my first seven years, and many of us went to school in bare feet on the hot days. After a while, we weren't bothered by stones and other rough objects.

How times have changed.


Friday, February 17, 2012


Photograph by Pat Jeffers

I've been having fun for the past three years putting this blog together, and I hope all of you have enjoyed the 171 images that have been posted thus far.

One of the things I've enjoyed the most was posting a short essay along with the photograph to support the image. I often refer to these as "The story behind the scene."

Regardless of how many times I view these images, It's as if I were seeing them again for the first time, and that immediately triggers all sorts of interesting details, many of which I pass along to you, the viewers.

This coming Monday, an exhibition of my Appalachian Collection will be open to the public at the Virginia Historical Society Museum in Richmond, VA. You can read a short description about the show on the second image down from this one.

Last month I turned 78, and I am happy to say that I am still activelyheading into the mountains and the nearby desert to document the beauty of the western landscape. You will see many of these new images throughout the blog.

To view a larger image of any of these photographs, left click on the image


Jack Jeffers
Montrose, CO

Monday, February 6, 2012


Rhode Island

This image speaks for itself. And, as I point out so often, it is important to always keep your eyes open for new concepts, and have your camera close by and ready for the unexpected.

I was heading home to the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia from an art show in Connecticut when I decided to take an exit off the Interstate and grab a quick bite to eat. Evidently, the sea gulls had the same plan.

Because of the numerous background distractions, I decided to treat this image a little differently from the rest of my collection. I projected the image onto a sheet of 4 x 5 " Kodalith (high contrast) film and painted out everything but the main attraction. There used to be a special goop made for doing just this sort of thing, and I ended up with a negative image. This simple sconcept was ideally suited for this sort of treatment.

It makes for something a little different.

Saturday, January 14, 2012


Photograph Courtesy Va Historical Society


END OF AN ERA: The Photography of Jack Jeffers

Richmond, VA

Opens February 20, 2012 and runs through August 26

“This exhibition displays large-format black-and-white prints of people and landscapes from the Appalachian region of western Virginia taken by award-winning photographer Jack Jeffers. Before Jeffers moved to Wyoming, the Virginia artist donated 123 monumental images to the Virginia Historical Society. Jeffers stated in 1996, “What you have represents almost thirty years of my life. Much of what I have recorded is already past history and most of the people I photographed are either dead or close to it.”

“The show will consist of two dozen of the photographs you so kindly donated to the Society. Our designer and I decided that we best give your powerful images room to breathe -- and not stack them like the walls of the Louvre in past centuries. We are confident that the 24 images we selected will make a very powerful impact indeed! So too will the labels, because, aside from an introductory panel, we are using your words entirely. We obviously have utilized your website, and we make reference to it in the introductory label so that visitors to the VHS can discover it.” ---Dr. William Rasmussen

Virginia Historical Society

428 N. Boulevard
Richmond, VA

Thursday, January 5, 2012



Go to the next post to read the Story Behind the Scene

Left click on the image above to view a larger image.


This image is also posted about midway through my blog, and I noticed this morning that it had received an earlier comment. It went like this. "I would have put more open field than hillside if I were to shoot the same subject."

Had this been a painting, I would have seen some merit to the statement because the painting could have been altered and changed during the initial concept. The painter could have repositioned the old truck, changed the foreground and altered the background depending on his or her creative process.

I captured this image as I envisioned it, and I used a normal 80 mm lens on my medium format camera to make the exposure. All of the elements came together in my mind and they were about as near perfect as one could imagine. Lastly, Mother Nature tossed in another snow shower just as I was setting up my tripod and camera, This completed my composition.

The person doing the critique did not seem to understand that I could not have moved any further back because I had already run out of space, and I chose not to move any further left or right or it would have upset the balance and lead-in which had already been established by the artist. In other words, I liked this landscape just as it was, and to add one further note, I do not "shoot" my subjects. I photograph them. Leave the shooting to the gun lovers.

A final note--there were many other potential close-up images in and around this old farm scene. This, however, was my favorite, and a scene such as this provides many potentially nice concepts for the camera or brush artist.


There is another nice image in this blog which received some criticism from a fellow photographer way back when---about 1979, I believe. This guy was almost nasty about his critique. I will post the image which I title, "Horse & Fence just ahead of this one so that you can clearly see what we are talking about.

To capture an image such as this, you must anticipate, and then at the precise moment, you execute. This has often been referred to as the "Decisive Moment."

I stopped along a back country road in central Virginia and watched this scene develop as the horse approached the fence. By then I had the camera set up and ready to go. I even had a plastic bag placed over it to prevent the snow from melting on the lens. I made the exposure precisely when the horse turned it's head and looked to it's left. Or, from my standpoint, to the right. That is what made this image a total success. Had I made the exposure with the horse looking straight at me or in the opposite direction, the image would have been unacceptable.

The fellow making the open critique told me that the image was split into two halves, linked together only by a fence. It should NOT have that open space which is partially occupied by the horse between the two trees. The key to this is the fact that the horse, by turning it's head to the left, leads the viewers eye into the presentation and beyond. How simple it is, and it has been one of my favorite images over the years. This is the only criticism that I know of which was ever personally directed at me regarding the horse and fence. But, people are funny.

I have continually told up-and-coming artists to react to their gut feeling. "If the concept feels right, push that shudder release, and nine times out of ten, you will be right on target."

This artist prefers to think of "Rules" as guidelines. In the art world, rules are made to be broken. But be careful not to overwork a piece of art.

In the old days when I was still into serious printing, the trash can in my lab was often overflowing with test strips resulting from futile attempts to make a finished print turn out just the way I had originally envisioned it.