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          C O O G A N Biography

Photography is my career -- It is my passion.

Dan Coogan, Coogan Photographic, Phoenix, AZ photographer, circa 1991

Dan Coogan '91

  I chose to use “Photography With A Vision” as my identity because it’s seeing in a way that tells the story, goes beyond... makes a statement. Photography is my career -- It is my passion. It is the only profession I have wanted to pursue.

My father Alan Coogan, cultivated a love of image making as far back as I can remember. We went camping every summer and I remember early on, taking pictures from a gondola while traveling up the side of a mountain in Canada. . . I thought “this is so cool.” . . . and that was the spark. I wanted to make pictures for the rest of my life.

Growing up in Kent, Ohio -- I had a paper route and became an Eagle Scout, and a certified scuba diver. I started running in Feb. 1985 and have continued running on a regular basis since then (about 25 miles a week) and have run 6 marathons, 2 Triathlons, numerous 10K races and hundreds of miles each year. In 1986 I walked with a group of 300 people from Los Angeles, CA to Washington D.C. on the Great Peace March, shooting 500 rolls of film as the "official" photographer; this was an amazing experience, and my first real attempt at being a "professional photographer." Photos from the Great Peace March will be posted in a gallery in the portfolio section on this site.

Like many people, I went to college... I graduated from Kent State University, and found work in my field.

For 8 years I assisted many talented photographers, including Martin Reuben, Tom Pastoric, Rick and Tena Cicigoi, Barney Taxel (for 3 years as his full time assistant), Roger Mastroianni, Reed Rahn, Bob Carey, and many more. I owe a debt of gratitude to these photographers for teaching me -- Mentoring me. I soaked up information like a sponge… paid attention to the way things are done and how to be professional. Be creative, work hard, make a commitment to quality and think about the goals of the client.

After working in Cleveland, Ohio with Barney Taxel & Co. for 3 years, I moved out to Phoenix, Arizona in Sept. 1990 and have been happily living in the beautiful, hot, sunny desert ever since.

  Barney Taxel, Taxel Image Group, Cleveland, Ohio photographer

Barney Taxel '88

A few things I love about my work:

  1. Variety:
    Photographers are lucky to get to do so many different things -- to go so many different places. I’ve been below the earth in mining situations -- On top of sky scrapers. Met famous people, Billionaires, Sports stars and many, many great regular down to earth people like you and me.

  2. Challenges:
    I enjoy the challenge of Editorial photography. It’s fun going into lots of different places -- creating interesting pictures out of a tough situation. To tell a story in one or several photographs. And I enjoy Corporate photography. It’s a challenge to get executives to feel relaxed and comfortable in front of the camera.

  3. Compliments:
    Over the course of my career I have had many compliments on my people pictures. On a regular basis I hear “You know Dan, that picture you took of me is the best one I’ve ever had taken.” That is a nice thing to hear. People don’t have to say that sort of a thing. It’s genuine and I appreciate it.

For the last 20+ years I have strived to create memorable images. I've had the great honor to make images for many clients... companies, magazines, individuals, amazing experiences, working with great people on all sorts of photo shoots that I never could have imagined when this career started... I have been fortunate to follow my dream of photography.

Thanks for visiting my little part of the world.

Dan Coogan

Dan Coogan, Coogan Photographic, Phoenix, AZ photographer, circa 2005

Dan Coogan 2005

Behind the scenes gallery (coming soon)

Eventually I will post up images of me working on a variety of photo shoots. Some are scanned from polaroids that were shot years ago, so please forgive the quality of some these images. (I will add to the gallery as time and energy allow.)

Here are 3 quotes that I like:

1. Press On:
Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence.

• Talent will not: Nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent.

• Genius will not: Unrewarded genius is almost a proverb.

• Education will not: The world is full of educated derelicts.

Persistence and Determination alone are Omnipotent.

  The slogan 'press on' has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.

  - Calvin Coolidge, 30th President of the United States

2. What is an Artist?
"A man who works with his hands is a laborer, a man who works with his hands and his mind is a craftsman, but a man who works with his hands, his mind and his heart is an artist." 

  - Louis Nizer, American Lawyer

3. "Life is a learning curve."

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This page last updated: 11/26/08