Bob McClelland was born in Blackley, Manchester in 1944. On leaving Ardwick Technical High School in 1961 he went on to pursue a career in Organic Chemistry, a subject in which he had an interest of long-standing, and subsequently spent many years involved with chemistry and computing in the Research Department at ICI Blackley.
It was in his leisure time that he began to become actively involved with visual art, and with photography in particular. To be engaged in an artistic activity, Bob maintains, is more properly to be viewed as a privilege rather than as a given right.
The photographs which accompany this profile were all taken within a few miles of where Bob once lived and worked, and are intended to illustrate certain aspects of the Manchester environment that are, in essence, nothing less than magical.
Bob sees photography as being a medium which facilitates the capturing of something that, at a particular moment in time, had existence within the framework of what is generally accepted to be the ‘real’ world.
Of course, part of the magic is intrinsically bound up with the fact that the subjects which are photographed were in actual fact found by the photographer, rather than having been artificially arranged or constructed by him.
About photography in general he believes that: ‘ No matter how beautiful, romantic, or aesthetically pleasing an image may be, the essence of all valid photography is finally conceptual in nature and documentary in effect’.
Bob McClelland’s work is to be found in a variety of collections, both public and private, and he has exhibited in a number of galleries and universities in the UK and the USA.
In addition he has written several reviews for the British Journal of Photography and Creative Camera magazine and his work has been featured in the Penrose Graphic Arts International Annual.