About the Book
My portraits are made very close, not environmental at all. I am focused on their humanity and not their circumstance.
These portraits are concerned with the dignity of humanity; all humanity. This is not just about the dignity of the homeless, it’s about you and me and our fundamental human needs of belonging, respect, love and kindness.
I was born in Boston, Massachusetts and relocated to Sarasota, Florida as an infant. My father was the late Frank Rampolla, the figurative expressionist artist popular in the 1960’s, who was known for his large oil paintings that dealt with the nature of the human condition. My father passed away when I was eleven years old so I was raised by my mother who never remarried. My mother instilled in me an appreciation for creating art and music and a compassion for humanity which influences me a great deal. By the time I was in college, I was making portraits of strangers on the streets of Ybor City, Florida. Ybor City is a culturally diverse area that artists flocked to at the time so it was a wonderful environment to hone my skills. While on a music scholarship as a guitarist, I completed directed studies of art composition and sculpture with Jerry Meatyard, brother of the fine art photographer, Eugene Meatyard.