The color photography of Karl LaLonde is an exploration of the beauty of old trucks, trains and old vintage airplanes. America has had a love affair with trucks, trains and old airplanes, an important part of America’s nostalgic culture. Capturing the aging beauty, the rust, the old lights, the fading colors, has become a passion with Karl LaLonde.
“I love transportation, especially old transportation. Coming up close to these machines for me is like meeting someone in their 80s and they finally start to talk about their lives and how full they have been. I see that in the old trucks and trains that I photograph.” Karl travels with his camera through towns each different with their unique look & styles.
LaLonde is a retired art director: “I still love doing artwork. The passion has never stopped.” LaLonde is a photographer and painter. Originally from the 1000 Islands area in upstate New York, he spent his high school and college years here in the Hudson Valley. His high school track coach taught Karl how to take pictures. He attended Dutchess Community College for commercial art and Bard College to study photography. IBM offered him a job, and asked if he could shorten his hair a few inches. He started working for the company as an artist in IBM’s TV studio in the sixties. He was directing and producing productions by age 24, and won several international TV awards. By 30 he was art-directing. All this time, outside the corporation, he was photographing, painting, and showing what he calls “far-out stuff.”
He and his wife take long car rides through New York, Massachusetts, Vermont and Connecticut. They walk and hike into the woods where LaLonde says he usually takes at least 100 to 200 exposures per trip. To feed his art habit, he and his wife, (who is also an artist) operated a toy store The Danbury Hobby Center in Danbury, Connecticut.
Karl is now a new co-owner of RiverWinds Gallery.
"Towns are different with their unique look & styles. Always at their beginning or at the edge there are junkyards taking care of the old until their recycled end.
Trucks and cars; tired and retired from there tasks lay dormant with their own memories of the heroic deeds. For many years they have accomplished impossible tasks for man. Their memories are starting to fade like the color on their skin.
Trucks, the modern work horses are the heroes we’ve used, wore out and left in a field to retire. These steel marvels are more beautiful now than when shiny and new. Amazing what time can do to metal and paint. How the brilliant colors are homogenized with rust. There is beauty in their patina, history and in their engine hearts." --Karl LaLonde
Karl is also a painter and there is a display of his paintings in the RiverWinds Gallery brick window