About Mel
Published Works
Mel Schockner
Photographer of 3-D Fine Art & Craft

Reporter-Herald Valley Window
February 27, 2008

Rolling with the changes
Mel Schockner's Passion for fine art photography led
him from film to digital, from Bay Area to Loveland

By Kenneth Jessen

Mel Schockner’s path to becoming a premier fine art photographer has been long and convoluted.

Photography, however, always has been a constant force in his life from the time he enrolled in the U.S. Navy in 1957.

Schockner went through the Navy’s photographic school in 1958 at Pensacola Naval Air Station.

Window Valley Article

His first assignment was to take images of the effectiveness of naval guns on their targets, and to do this, he was provided the finest equipment.

Out of all of his assignments, he liked Guantanamo Bay Naval Air Station in Cuba and was present during the Cuban missile crisis of the 1960’s.

After his first tour of duty was up in 1961, he walked Wilshire Boulevard looking for a job. Unsuccessful at finding employment, he re-enlisted in the Navy for another six years.

After his discharge, the G.I. Bill allowed Schockner to attend the Art Center College of Design in Los Angeles, where he met his wife.

After graduating from Art School, Schockner worked a number of jobs including commercial interior designer. Nothing seemed to give him satisfaction or peace of mind.

He even tried his hand at Ryder’s truck driving school and did fine negotiating narrow alleyways. He changed gears smoothly. On his license test, backing a semi-trailer on a freeway cloverleaf was his downfall.

After that, he took a test that was formulated to help people determine what they can do the best. Everything pointed toward art and design.

After his marriage to Jan Rosetta, the two ended up in the San Francisco Bay area. They purchased a wooded lot in Marin County on the north side of San Francisco Bay. Schockner went about designing their dream house, something they built themselves.

Schockner went into business making custom handcarved wooden panels for homes and businesses in the area. He also set up a studio to photograph his work and, later, the work of other Bay Area artist.

The lives of the Schockners were changed forever when Rosetta was commissioned to do “Cougar Bench.”

This was installed in downtown Loveland in Thompson Park at Fourth and Lincoln.

On their visit, they fell in love with the town and came in contact with its many artists.

After nearly two decades of living in Northern California, the Schockners moved to Colorado in 1992. To them, it was another step along life’s path.

Schockner has continued to develop as a photographer of fine art, having worked with more than 275 clients.

He also has done photography for several books such as Patrick V. Kipper’s “Patinas for Silicon Bronze” and Sandy Scott’s “Spirit of the Wild Things.”

His photos have appeared in numerous show catalogs, magazine advertisements, articles, posters and on artists’ Web sites.

He has used more than 8,000 sheets of 4x5 film and countless rolls of 35 mm film, both color and black and white. He has moved from one type and size camera to another.

His old cameras now sit in a miniature museum in his studio.

A couple of years ago, Schockner went digital, a change that has greatly simplified his photography and has taken him from film, paper and chemicals to computers.

All artwork © 1985 - 2011 Mel Schockner