Born in Oakland, David Allen has lived on the Mendocino Coast for over 28 years, along with his wife, Lucienne, raising five kids in this beautiful, tight-knit community. Now an empty-nester, David has re-engaged his passion for photography, which began in the mid-1990’s.
Allen attributes his keen eye and attention to detail to his early years in the autobody industry, owning and operating Dave’s Autobody in Point Arena. Additionally, he married into an artistic family. “I was constantly surrounded by art and creative minds, living next door to my wife’s grandparents, Lucienne Bloch and Stephen Dimitroff.”
The Dimitroff’s fell in love while apprenticing with Diego Rivera in the 1930’s and continued executing murals and teaching the fresco tradition. Bloch, a dear friend of Frida Kahlo, was a multi-talented artist and photographer. “They truly appreciated life and had gratitude for all things. I’d like to think some of that rubbed off on me.” Allen assisted the grandparents with fresco projects, which led to the collaboration with the late Sharon Porter on the seascape mosaic mural in downtown Gualala.
Allen always appreciated the beauty of nature and became enamored with capturing landscape images as an amateur photographer. Although, still having a working darkroom, Allen has finally embraced digital photography, finding his biggest challenge sitting in front of the computer.
“Having the desire to create without limitations” gave rise to Allen’s business California Brothers Design, www.calibrothers.com, which for now focuses on capturing the cannabis plant. Allen’s goal was to highlight the plant when the flower is at its medicinal peak, rendering its most unusual combination of colors, printing it on metal, with every strain being different from the next.
Allen continues to work with farmers, cultivators, and geneticists alike helping them immortalize their unique strains, showcasing each distinct variety in detail.