Over the last 14 years I have seen thousands of images holding some affiliation with the Harley-Davidson Motor Company. A couple of years ago, the Harley-Davidson Archives Department showed me the Rosenkrans collection, a newly acquired grouping of photographs mostly shot on glass plates. This collection sat with the Milwaukee County Historical Society for decades prior to The Motor Company reacquiring it in 1999.
L.C. Rosenkrans was appointed the first official staff photographer for the Motor Company in 1911. The majority of his photos were created to document the first few decades of the Motor Company’s operations and were also used in advertising and technical articles. The collection’s artistic qualities were readily apparent to me. Mr. Rosenkrans impressed me with a wonderful sense of design and the vast majority of the pieces in this collection were beautifully composed. The built-in benefit to painting this collection is the fact that I was able to focus more on the expression of some aspect of the painting — texture, color value, etc.
The pieces in this collection are all about the artistic wind blowing at the time I painted them. Since these pieces can get a little more expressive, I anticipated the collectors to be ones that really enjoy the WAY I painted the image rather than just the subject matter. I kept the regular edition to a count of twelve.