Santa Barbara News-Press
Jan. 31-Feb. 6, 2003
Scene Setting

5 Questions with Rod Rolle

The local Photographer's work will be shown in an exhibition at UCSB's
MultiCultural Center Beginning Tuesday with a 4 to 6 p.m. reception and
artist talk, it runs through Feb. 28. Included are images of Nobel Peace Prize winner Linus Pauling meeting the Dalai Lama in Santa Barbara, and pictures from the photographer's 500-person family reunion in the Bahamas. Since graduating from Brooks Institute in 1986, he has photographed the Los Angeles riots, Malibu fires, the Million Man March and O.J. Simpson's trial. He teaches photography at Santa Barbara City College.

Q. Is there a common theme to your work?
A. I look at photographers as documenting a journey through life. The
pictures are stops along the way.

Q. Your UCSB exhibition is called "Images with a Global View in Mind." What does that mean? A. That's my way of saying you should look at life with a broad perspective. As a photographer, you always find yourself in unique situations, and you have to in with an open mind.

Q. What have you learned on the job?
A. One time, I went and photographed the Vatican Observatory outside Tucson. It kind of gives you a new perspective on life, and the value of our little planet in the whole scheme of things. I was talking to the
astronomers about how they relate to their families after viewing the galaxies all day long. They said the small things in life, the personal relationships, are what they end up valuing.

Q. What's your favorite image in the exhibition?
A. I went with a youth group to an African (-modeled) village in Beaufort, S.C., put together by African Americans who practice the Yuroba religion. At the moment we entered the compound, a king's ceremony was being
performed. I turned around and the look on everyone's face was astonishment, so I took that photograph.

Q. Is it true you play drums around town in the Stiff Pickle Orchestra?
A. I look at drums and my camera both as percussion instruments. Photography is all about timing, getting in the rhythm of what's in front of you so you can click the shutter at just the right moment.

By Starshine Roshell, News-Press Staff Writer