Randy Leffingwell Bio

by Cara Barrett on August 5, 2011

Photographer and writer, Randy Leffingwell, has more than 30 books in print, primarily on Americana subjects. These cover interests and areas as diverse as the American barn and Harley-Davidson motorcycles, California’s wine country and John Deere farm tractors. His awareness of and attraction to cars, trucks and other moving things goes back as far as he can remember, to the first Dinky Toys and Match Box cars his father and mother gave him. His practical introduction to real sports cars came a few years later when his uncle took him to watch a weekend of racing events at Meadowdale International Raceway in suburban Chicago.

Throughout all this time, however, he imagined himself becoming an architect and his life-long admiration of buildings and design began with frequent trips to downtown Chicago. While in undergraduate studies at Kansas University in the architectural engineering sequence, he discovered photography and scarcely looked back as he shifted his major studies from architecture, through English, Art History, psychology, and finally to the William Allen White school of Journalism for a BS in photojournalism.

Following graduation from KU, Randy began a successful career as a photojournalist first at the Kansas City TIMES, then joining the staff of the Chicago SUN-TIMES where he remained for nine years. He then worked as associate editor at AutoWeek magazine in Detroit, before being hired by the Los Angeles TIMES as a writer/photographer. He worked for the TIMES for 11 years, covering everything from news stories to personality profiles to food features throughout Italy, film festivals in France and Utah, and live theater in London. It was, he says, a great job and a great place to work.

It was over thirteen years ago when he began his first book project. He has logged more than 600,000 miles on photographic road trips throughout the United States, completely wearing out three vehicles. He estimates he’s shot something close to 15,000 rolls of film for the books.

It is the published and unpublished images from these projects that have caused him to launch this website, making these images available to individuals, associations, agencies and others, for one-time publication, out-right purchase or an enlarged print for an enthusiast’s wall.

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