About Thomas & Bruce

 

Thomas Belling

Master Photographer

Photographic Craftsman

PPA Certified

Fellow Of Photography

Thomas started photography as a high school junior.   As a joke he offered to be the yearbook photographer.  That summer and after high school he worked in a northwest Iowa studio.  He has served Des Moines as Thomas Photography since 1968.  With prestigious family, wedding and senior portraits, Thomas earned the Masters, Craftsman, and Certification Degrees from the Professional Photographers of America.  From the Professional Photographers of Iowa he earned the Fellowship Degree, of which he was first in the state to reach the Diamond level.  He was awarded the Medlar Award for the top portrait in Iowa in 1991 and has been in the Top Ten (Iowa) Photographers twice.

 

Thomas has a strong background in the furthering of photographic education.  He is a Past-President of the PP of I and was one of Iowa's three delegates to the PPA Council.  He served 8 years on the first regional Heart of America Board.  Thomas served 15 years for the Mid-America Institute of Professional Photography, with the last 5 years as the Director of this school, which grew to be the largest of its kind.  He was awarded the National Service Award for his outstanding contributions to the profession.

 

Because of a loyal clientele, Thomas is now photographing weddings of couples, where he also photographed the parent's vows.

 

Hobbies for Thomas include flying, golf, reading and family time.

JoAnn Belling

Master Photographer

Photographic  Craftsman

Fellow of Photography

 

JoAnn, of Thomas Photography, Inc., became interested in photography when she married her husband Thomas.  She specializes in environmental and scenic images as well as black and white candid portraits of weddings.  She has earned both the Master and Craftsman Degrees from the Professional Photographers of America and her Fellowship Degree (Diamond Level) from the Professional Photographers of Iowa.  She has multiple images in the Loan Collection.  She has won numerous regional and state awards, including several First Place and Judges Choice ribbons.  She has been in the Top Ten (Iowa) twice and in the Top Three Masters (Iowa) three years.  She also has been awarded the National Service Award from both Iowa and Heart of America for her lifelong contributions to the profession.   She also was the first to receive the regional service award from the Heart of America Association.

 

JoAnn has served numerous years on the Print Crew for the Professional Photographers of Iowa and the Heart of America Association.  This has proven to e enriching as well as educational.

 

JoAnn's main hobby is quilting.  Her quilts have appeared in books and magazines.  Ribbons have been awarded in the state and national judging.  She has enjoyed teaching quilting classes throughout the nation and has her own quilting web site at WWW.JoAnnBelling.com.

She also plays the piano, and spends time with their nine grandchildren.

 

 

Bruce Belling

Master Photographer

Photographic Craftsman

PPA Certified

Fellow Of Photography

Bruce started in photography as a child.  He worked in the darkroom and production areas for his parents.  After the University of Iowa he started his own business of Photography By Bruce in Historic Valley Junction.  He established a strong reputation for quality in senior, family and wedding photography.   in 1996 he joined his father's studio which is renamed Thomas & Bruce Photography.

 

He earned the Masters Degree in 1995, Craftsman in 1997, and is nationally Certified from the PP of A.  Bruce also has received his Fellowship Degree (Diamond Level) from the Professional Photographers of Iowa.  He has the distinction of scoring an incredible 96 out of 100 on an image and has seven images in the Loan Collection.  Bruce was awarded the 1996 and 2005 Medlar award for the state's top portrait.   He has won numerous regional and state awards, First Places and Judges choice ribbons.  He has has placed in the Top Ten (Iowa) twice.  In his first year in the Master's category he placed second and was the Top Certified Master.  He also has achieved the Top Iowa Artist Award.   Bruce is one of the few who completes every step of his competition prints himself.  This includes the various printing skills, artwork techniques, mounting, and lacquering.  Yearly he attends 40 to 80 hours of continuing education to keep current.  He is a Past President for the Iowa Association and served on the regional Heart of America Association Board.  He is one of Iowa's three delegates to the National Council.  He has also received the National Service Award from Iowa.  This makes Thomas, JoAnn and Bruce the only family with 3 Service Award Winners.

 

Bruce and his wife, Randi, have four children and live in West Des Moines.  He enjoys time with his family, flying, reading, and sports.

 

 

Professional Photographers of America Advanced Degree Program

 

Master of Photography (M.Photog.) - This degree is earned by the accumulation of 25 Merits; over half of which must be earned directly from Print Competition.  There are four Masters of Photography in the Greater Des Moines in the Belling family.  This degree is viewed as a lifetime goal of most professional photographers.

 

 

Photographic Craftsman (Photog.Cr.) - This degree is earned by the additional accumulation of 25 Merits; over half of which must be earned directly from lecturing and teaching other professional photographers.   There are four Photographic Craftsmen in the Greater Des Moines in the Belling family.

 

 

PPA Certified (CPP) - This designation is earned by the successful passing of a rigorous test covering all aspects of photography, the submission of a panel of images acceptable to the CPP Commission of the PPA, and a reference check.  This degree has continuing requirements to meet, both in the classroom and with print entries.  Both Thomas and Bruce are nationally certified.

National Print Competition Information

Each year a professional photographer who is a member of the Professional Photographers of America is allowed to enter four images in this competition.  Strict regulations govern the presentation and judging of the images.   An image must receive a score of 80 out of 100 in order to be accepted to the General Exhibit worth one Merit towards an Advanced Degree.

 

The top 1-2% of the General Exibit images are chosen each year for the prestigious Traveling Loan Collection Exhibit.  This is worth two Merits towards the Advanced Degrees.

 

The images that qualify for the General or Loan Collection Exhibits are displayed at the Professional Photographers of America's annual convention.  The Loan Collection Prints are also used as a traveling display throughout the year at various locations.

 

NATIONAL RECORD!!

Thomas and JoAnn, their son Bruce (a full-time photographer), and their son Wayne (a full-time physician) hold the national record for most Master Photographers, Photographic Craftsman in one family.

 

 

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