About Me

I was born in the port city of Muskegon, Michigan, on the shores of Lake Michigan, on October 2, 1934.  As a youngster, I had a Brownie Hawkeye camera that was given to me by my parents, and that piqued my interest in photography at an early age.  I was always taking snapshots whenever and wherever possible.  At that time, I never considered that one day I might be trying to sell my work.  Later in life, when my walls started filling up, I started giving my pictures away for anniverseries, birthdays, etc.  About fifteen years ago friends started encouraging me to try and market my photography, so now, after following their advice, I have images hanging in homes and offices from coast to coast.

Bob Zeller

I served over seven years in the U. S. Air Force, retiring early for medical reasons in 1962.  My last assignment was Goodfellow AFB, in San Angelo, Texas.  The healthy climate served me well, so my wife, Ann and I decided the make the city our permanent home.  For income, I was a professional saxophonist for nearly 40 years, augmented with daytime sales positions.  I am now retired and make photography my full-time avocation.

Bob “Mr. Cool” Zeller

I am a graduate of the New York Institute of Photography and a member of the International Freelance Photographers Organization.  I also support the National Wildlife Federation.  My photographs have been publishd nationally in National Wildlife Magazine, Photographers Forum Magazine, Wild West Magazine, Texas Farm and Ranch Magazine, and the San Angelo Standard-Times.  I contribute photographs to the Friends of Big Bend National Park, and I also contribute bird images to Texas Ornithological Society, for their Handbook of Texas Birds.   In addition my photography appears on the cover and the interior of Ross McSwain’s book, “See No Evil, Speak No Evil”, a book about the mob violence in the Texas heartland between 1869 and 1904.

Caracature of Bob Zeller circa 1961 abroad in Istanbul, Turkey

Visit my “Galleries” page to see links to my portfolios.  For inquiries for purchasing prints, or if you have any general questionsor comments, feel  free to contact me at bob.zeller@aol.com.

Bob Zeller, September 11, 2009

86 thoughts on “About Me

  1. In late September, 2013, just before my 59th birthday, my wife Shryl (yes, that’s the correct spelling), my sister Karlan, and I left the Dallas-Fort Worth big city hustle and embarked on our first west Texas adventure. I hope it was the first of many more to come. Shryl’s interest in the art culture in Marfa, Texas, was the initial inspiration behind the trip. After a couple of nights there, we ventured southward to the Big Bend area, and were fortunate to meet you and Ann at the casitas of the Far Flung Outdoor Center. We were your neighbors for a short while. The splendor of the landscape, the basin, the stars, the Rio Grande, Terlingua, and the kindness of the folks who live there was far more than we anticipated. I just wanted to say “howdy” and wish the best for you and Ann.

    Hope to see y’all again!

    • Hi, Kerry! Such a nice comment. We do remember you. Now you know why we love the area co much. We will returning soon in a few months, and we will think of you. We wish the best for you guys, too. Maybe we’ll meet again. :-)

  2. Wow , your biography is very rich and fantastic, now I understand why your all photos are so perfect and professional, because You are a specialist of photography. I admire You and your jobs.:-)

  3. Bob, I’m stopping by here to thank you very much for recommending my blogs to a wonderful guy called Jim Cunningham. Jim has emailed me to say how much he and his daughter enjoy reading my posts, and he also had some glowing words to say about yourself and Ann. It’s a lovely thing to have my work appreciated by people such as Jim and yourself, so a very big thank you! :)

  4. Oh ho! So not only do you take excellent photographs, you do a sexy sax too! Please tell your wife Ann congratulations on bagging her bird!

  5. Hi Bob, I too am a Marfan Patient. My Brother died in May 1986. He was 7ft tall. He had his chest bones re-formed when he was about 11 so they knew he had Marfans. He was told when he was 19 that the valve looked good so not to worry about that anymore. He married and had 6 kids and at 32 fell to the floor and that was it! Yes….now they do know more. I have had the new Marfan lenses to replace my half lenses. I have two anurisms in my valve. I see a Dr at a Marfan Clinic in Salt Lake City about every 6 months. I am glad that there is a little more attention put on this disease. My Brother has 3 of the 6 children with the disease. Two sons have had their valve replaced. One son was 21 yr old and the other son had his replaced last year and he is 32. These boys too are almost 7ft tall. My Brother has a granddaughter now who has had back surgery for scoliosis and she is diabetic at the age of 12. There are other of his grandkids who are showing signs of the disease. There is so much more they know. I was so happy to be able to get the Marfan lenses. I see colors like never before. I love taking pictures. Maybe I will work on getting a better camera. I love all animals but I feed my share of birds on my back porch. I sit on my couch and watch the birds on my feeders. I too have seen birds that I have never noticed before. The real miricle of all this is that our Youngest Brother is Wally Joyner. He made MLBaseball one month before we lost our oldest Brother. He was checked out for Marfans when they learned that is what our Brother had. He did not have the problem with the valve and was able to play 16+ yrs with Major League Baseball. If they would have found any problem with his valve, he would have never been able to play another game with his team, The California Angels. He is now Coaching for MLBaseball. I worked 33 years at the local hospital and was able to retire two years ago because of my Marfan Syndrone. I appreciated reading your story and now seeing your pictures. Thanks for sharing your talent with all of us!! It really is great to hear that you are enjoyin life with Marfans and your in you 70s. Best Regards, Terri Joyner, Salt Lake City Utah

    • Thank you so much for writing, Terri. It sounds like the Marfan Syndrome was a family affair with you. I am sorry that you had so many complications in your life. It almost makes me feel guilty, since my case is apparently pretty mild. I am very lucky that I am still here. I am going to add an update to my post on my Marfan Syndrome page, in a few days, so you might be interested in watching for it.

  6. Found my way here thanks to the Marfan FB page..we have much in common. I was born on October 2nd, too but in 1972. I was born and raised here in Michigan and for the last 12 years my husband and I lived on the lakeshore near Holland/Fennville area but in the past year we have moved back to the Battle Creek area. I was diagnosed with Marfans when I was 17 and as of now have a thoracic anneurysm measuring 4.2.I have been very lucky, my father was not. He died in 1977 not knowing he had it. Happy blogging, I enjoy it also. Mine is to track my journey to be healthy spiritually and phsyically. Thanks for sharing your life journey for us to read.

    • Thanks for writing, Melissa. I would say that, compared to you, I am the lucky one. My aorta is still in great shape. I have had other health problems, but none that I couldn’t handle.

    • Thank you so much, Debbie. I am sorry to say that I don’t get involved with these awards anymore. Frankly, it is just too much trouble to try to think of favorite bloggers and followers, when I feel deeply that they are all equal. But I really appreciate your thoughts.

      • I know its hard, some do some don’t but just wanted to give you the award anyway,, but yes i so know what you mean but i have only been blogging on wordpress for a short while, moved over from blogger.. but you’re welcome anyway

  7. Hey Bob, Great pictures and commentary. Nice selection on equipment. Do you belong to any birdwatching group? I have a 5D and have been taking nature pictures for over thirty years. I just wanted to say hi and thank you for your great blog. Just yesterday I was birding and was visited by an Audubon’s Oriole…what a treat. The area I have been visiting is frequented by Golden Bellied Woodpeckers, Cooper’s Hawks, Green Jays, Common Snipes, Greater Yellowlegs, Purrhuloxias, Cardinals, etc…

    Tharon Neal

      • My wife and I are gateguarding an oil well in our vintage Airstream trailer just between Cotulla, Tx and Carrizo Springs, Tx. I have permission to go on private land to a 110 year old dirt tank for cattle (pond). Very remote and quiet, until the Green Jays visit. When I was visited by the Audubon’s Oriole, I also had a young Cooper’s Hawk sit on a branch 20 feet from me for over an hour and then she swooped down within 10 feet from me and took a 20 minute bath. Got some great shots. Sometimes I have a hard time identifying a species that I am not familiar with. But I am getting better over time. Thanks for your response and feel free to contact me if you ever get down our way…

        • Thanks, Tharon. I will definitely look you up if we get over that way. I love to shoot birds. That seems to be my specialty the past 4-5 years. It sound like you have the perfect habitat and setting to see lots of species. I have never seen a Green Jay, and that is on my ‘bucket’ list along with a few others. I hope you will stay in touch, and follow my blog. If you ever get to San Angelo, there are many places you can bring your Airstream and we can go birding. :-)

  8. Hi Bob, I have nominated Texas Tweeties for a Blog of the Year Award 2012. I know you receive awards like confetti!! You don’t have to do anything with this one, though! You can view my post on The Hazel Tree under ‘Comment’. http://the-hazel-tree.com. If you wish, you can nominate your own winners. Just a bit of fun, I guess! But your blog is deserving of an award – I enjoy it very much. Kind regards, Jo

  9. Hi Bob, fellow Texas birder/photographer here, although a few hundred miles north of you at Lake Meredith. Nice photos-we have a lot of the same birds here. I’ve just taken up birding and photography in the last year and am still quite amazed at how much fun it is. I never paid much attention to birds and had no idea there were so many different species around this area, especially in winter!

    • Hi Mark, I came across your blog and have subscribed to it. Your photography is similar to mine and I am anxious to see more and to hear more about birding and bird photography in the panhandle. You are right, there are more birds around in winter than summer. That was a surprise to me, too. Maybe we can get together some day. I have camera, will travel. :-)

      I just came off of surgery, but I am feeling better and I should be posting again here in another day or two.

  10. Hello Bob. I don’t know why it’s taken me so long to venture over to your blog, as I’ve seen you frequenting some of our mutual blogging friends – now that I have, I see myself returning often. Your photos and commentary are terrific.

    The 1961 caricature above made me think of Paul Desmond.

  11. Good afternoon! Bob Zeller,
    Just sitting here thinking about you this afternoon, and thought I look you up to see if you are still photographing, and you are still at it. I haven’t been at it now for the past two years, I been busy with my new business that I got into two in a half years ago, It’s expanding up here in the hill country. I been kind of ill since May of last year with just a hent of diverticulitlis. The past two months have been very good been feeling lots better. My mother got cancer four years ago, she’s been cancer free now for three in a half years, and the cancer came back in her lungs back in May. She is going through the chemo treatments and they are working. The eagles are still at it two years ago they built a new nest that is in the same area and it’s closer to the highway. i’m kind of thinking about getting back into that again when they return this fall. Anyway just wanted to say hello and check up on your latest work. They look great! Thanks, Terry Jennings

    • Hi Terry,
      I am glad to hear from you. I had been wondering if you were still doing any photographing. I still do as you can see. Plus I write my blog as often as I can. I really enjoy writing. I haven’t seen the eagles since they built the new nest. I might try again next fall. Sorry to hear about your mother. I hope she continues to improve. I have gotten very active into birding. What a blast. It is a great hobby. Plus I try to photograph every bird I see. But not sucessful some time. Thanks for your compliments.
      Bob

  12. Hi Bob. In an effort to improve my art, I am trying to put together a small group of people who would be willing to critique some of my images. I have followed your blog for some time now, and I respect your work and creative vision. If you would be willing to assist me in this way, please send me an e-mail to ted@gazellefinancial.com and I will let you know the specifics of what I have in mind. Thank you so much for considering this. Sincerely, Ted

  13. Hi Bob, as a photography lover myself, I am so happy to hear that you continue to do what you have always loved doing! I am saving up some money so I can buy a really nice camera to take even better pictures. I’m glad I came across your blog! I’m looking forward in looking at your pictures! Have a lovely day :)
    -Adriana

  14. Bob, because I enjoy and admire your blog so much, I have nominated you for the ABC Award.
http://avian101.wordpress.com/2012/04/14/abc-award/ ‎. In order to accept this award, you must comply with the two rules. Then you may place the Award logo on your site. Please do not feel any pressure to accept this award, I understand if you do not wish to participate. But know your site is appreciated, and your blogging is interesting, your photos are beautiful! I enjoy reading your posts! Have a great day! H.J.

  15. This is to inform you that you have been nominated for the Liebster Award! The award is being made in the following post on my blog – ‘John’s Mega Award Ceremony’! The post will be published this afternoon (21-02-2012)! Congratulations on receiving this recognition and appreciation of you and your superb blog!

    Hey Bob – I think your blog is absolute magic! Sorry about the formality of this notification but I sometimes think a ‘touch’ of formality adds weight to an award!

    Cheers

    John

  16. So happy to have found you through KatiesCamera blog. I am just starting out on trying my hand (eye) at photography. I love viewing photographer’s blogs in hopes of learning. I’ll see you around :)

  17. Hello Bob, after you stopped by my blog I just came right over and have been reading yours and viewing your images. I read your bio and I am inspired by your life story. It is always great to see people overcome illness and leap right back into life. Your photos are beautiful. Thank you for sharing them with us all.

  18. Hi Bob – Just came across your blog through Katie’s camera Blog! I haven’t been a ‘blogger’ for long and just been retired for 8 months and I can only say that I think your blog is a stunner, even though I am not a birder! The photographs are beautiful and I crave most of your equipment. Some of your landscape photographs remind me of childhood days when my friends and I used to watch lots of ‘western’ or ‘cowboy’ movies. I am a Scot, initially from Glasgow, so they were all very exciting to us and we used to play at Cowboys and Indians in the back street! Your narrative is personal and interesting and I have really enjoyed the whole experience! Look forward to many more posts!

    Take care

    John

    • Hi John, Thanks for all of your kind words. My blog is about photography as much as it is about birding. I am basically a wildlife photographer and it seems that currently I am photographing more birds than anything else. But I do like to do some landscapes. I have checked your blog and I think that you have a wonderful sense for composition. I have subscribed to it so I can see more of your work.

      Bob

  19. I’m very happy to have stumbled on your blog. Your photos are so vivid, they make me feel as though I’m right there in the moment, seeing what you see. Thank you for sharing, and I can’t wait to see more.

  20. Enjoyable! I like you Bob Zeller and I’m glad I was able to find you. Your humor, your pictures & your outlook on life is so refreshing, positive & honest. I love how the internet connects people in ways when they would never normally not meet. The way you write is so personable… You’re like the Grandpa I never had :)

    • Thanks, (I think). :-)

      I like you too, Stacy, for saying such nice things. Thanks for subscribing, and I will try to continue to entertain you. :-)

      P.S. Just don’t call me Gramps. :-)

  21. Hi Bob, I have been checking in from time to time to read your blog and enjoy the images you post. I was born in San Angelo but we moved when I was young and lived in Austin until this year when I moved to upstate New York after 50+ years in Texas. Your images and blog are a reminder to me of how beautiful Texas is. I hope to return soon and revisit San Angelo and the area around it. Keep up the wonderful work and I look forward to your next post.

    • Thanks so much for writing, Danny. When you do re-visit I hope we can hook up somehow. It would be nice. Thanks for the encouragement, and I will try to keep you “entertained”. :-)

  22. Bob, you have amazing photographs. I like the Vista view over the mountains and I could almost imagine myself looking over it. I also like ‘Going my way’. That one is cute! :-)

    • Thank you so much, Rose. I am glad you visited and gave me such nice compliments. I love photographing nature and wildlife, and “Going my Way” is one of my personal favorites. I love doing landscapes in the Big Bend area of west Texas also. I hope you will continue to visit.

      Bob

  23. I really liked learning about your background. Very impressive! My father is a retired Air Force and both my son and daughter are serving in the Navy. I look forward to learning as much about photography as I can from you. ~
    Maria

  24. Just stumbled across your blog. I will bookmark it and check in regularly. I started blogging earlier this year. I use it sort of like a diary. Certainly no pretense to be highly (or lowly) philosophical. Most of my entries are just about my daily activities. What I’m up to. Which is mostly rather mundane. However, it is a way for my family and friends to keep up with me and and follow how I’m spending my time. I am a birder. Have been for the past 30 years approximately. And I am about to retire. 2 days left here at work. And I DONE!!!!! Will have more time for birding and exploring the natural world. I spending most of my birding time locally. Which is southwestern Ontario, Canada.
    +1

  25. Bob,

    Just stumbled across your blog. I will bookmark it and check in regularly. I started blogging earlier this year. I use it sort of like a diary. Certainly no pretense to be highly (or lowly) philosophical. Most of my entries are just about my daily activities. What I’m up to. Which is mostly rather mundane. However, it is a way for my family and friends to keep up with me and and follow how I’m spending my time. I am a birder. Have been for the past 30 years approximately. And I am about to retire. 2 days left here at work. And I DONE!!!!! Will have more time for birding and exploring the natural world. I spending most of my birding time locally. Which is southwestern Ontario, Canada.

    My birding goal is to see 600 species (North America) before I die. It is achievable. I think.

    My email is theskins@rogers.com

    My blog is on word.press.

    I am 61 1/2 yrs old. So hopefully I have a few good years in me yet.

    Take care,
    Dave

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