David Lee Dailey is a California native who possesses a passion for vintage equipment, craftsmanship, adventure, and creativity. He was raised in Carmichael, a quirky suburb of Sacramento. As a youth much of David’s time was spent either with friends terrorizing the neighborhood, or helping his architect-father build custom homes. Working with his father taught Dailey to appreciate ingenuity, craftsmanship and work ethic, all of which has contributed to his artistic aesthetic, traditional approach and exacting nature.
David found photography at age 15 and immediately fell in love with the creativity and science required to shoot and process film. Over the next few years his camera would take aim at his favorite subject- the Sierra Nevada Mountains and farmlands nestled in those foothills. After receiving strong encouragement from instructors, and a few district photo awards it was time for college.
While a freshman, photographing people became his primary interest; it was the emotional connection with subjects and the challenge of expressing their unique essence that fascinated David. By junior year the photographer sought to build relationships with regional magazine editors, which was crucial for his blossoming collaborative skills. Creating expressive images and photo essays for local publications helped “cut his teeth” while still an undergrad. After receiving his degree and working in the Sacramento area, Dailey craved a new challenge.
So with his ’77 Mercedes packed and just enough money to last a couple months, David left the city of his youth and headed south to Los Angeles, where he found freedom to create the emotionally dark and expressive images in his mind. David Lee Dailey now works with regional and national publications, bands, and production companies to create compelling portraits for editorial, press release, and movie posters.