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Art of Alaska on Display in Ashford University Art Gallery
Photography show documents Ashford associate professor's adventures on 'The Last Frontier'
The above image is among the photographs taken by David Stedwell that will be on display in Ashford University's Cortona Art Gallery February 5-March 7.

For a photographer, vacation photos become more than a souvenir, so when David Stedwell went on vacation to Alaska, he knew that a camera would be among the most important items he would pack. Now, photographs from his 2013 adventure will be on display in an exhibit called “Postcard from Alaska” in Ashford University’s Cortona Art Gallery from February 5-March 7.

“The opportunity to travel Alaska by ship, train, and even an all-terrain vehicle was my ‘trip of a lifetime,’” said Stedwell, an associate professor in Ashford University’s Forbes School of Business.

“The images in this exhibit represent my efforts to meet three personal photographic objectives,” he said. “First, I wanted to capture images that would document my vacation for those back in the Midwest who ‘tuned in’ at their computers during the trip, and those brave souls who would ask for a recap when I returned. I wanted to create digital postcards that communicated the awesome scale of this diverse and beautiful state.”

“Second, I wanted to create images that challenged me to explore new subjects in a new environment. The values of light in an area with 22 hours of daylight were very different than those in Iowa. The vast geography of the state presented constantly changing variables in subject matter and weather. Each day on the trip was a visual overload of potential images. I was challenged to be active in seeking visual opportunities, patient in my approach to composition, and objective in my daily image editing.”

“Finally,” Stedwell, said, “I wanted to be able to share my digital postcards with the public. I hope visitors enjoy the exhibit, and I hope it will inspire them to create their own set of ‘postcards’ from their next vacation.”

Stedwell teaches graphic communication courses that include photography, advanced photography, and print design.

A reception for the photographer will be held on Tuesday, Feb. 25 from 3-5 p.m. in the art gallery.

The Cortona Art Gallery is located on the second floor of Ashford University’s St. Clare Hall at 400 North Bluff Boulevard in Clinton. The Gallery is named for Sister Cortona Phelan, OSF, former president of Mount St. Clare College (MSC) and former president of the Sisters of St. Francis. For many years, Sister Cortona influenced the quality of education at the college through her teaching of American history and her love of the arts.

She also served as MSC Academy principal and as dean of students at the college.

The gallery is open to the public, free of charge, every weekday from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. and for private showings by appointment. For further information, please call 563.242.4023.


About Ashford University

Where heritage meets innovation – that’s Ashford University. At Ashford, students discover relevant degree programs, innovative technology, and cherished tradition. Ashford offers associates, bachelor’s, and master’s online degree programs, while the Clinton, Iowa campus offers bachelor’s programs. Whether on campus or online, Ashford students enjoy the same supportive community. For more information, please visit or call Shari Winet, Vice President of Public Relations, at 858.513.9240 x2513.