Vanevenhoven graduated from the University of Wisconsin, Oshkosh in 1976 with a B.A. in Art Education. Shortly after graduation, he became a professional photographer and spent the next 43 years working as a portrait, industrial and commercial photographer.
He shoots film or digital. What Vanevenhoven uses depends on what he wants to capture and how he visualizes the final print. He may use anything from a $30 plastic film camera (Holga), a 4×5 view camera, a high-end DSLR or any of the half dozen cameras at his disposal. Like a painter utilizing different brushes or moving between oil, acrylic or watercolor, Vanevenhoven makes camera, lens and media (film or digital) choices depending on how he sees the subject in his mind’s eye.
If Vanevenhoven is working digitally, he uses the contemporary tools available to him. PhotoShop becomes his digital darkroom. He works closely with his print supplier to make sure the resulting image meets his vision. If he is working with black and white film, he prints the images himself in his home lab, using traditional silver-based paper.
His subject matter moves between urban and rural. If something “grabs him,” He photographs it. It could be a landscape that reminds him of an 18th century painting, a dilapidated structure, or it simply could be line, light, shadow and pattern that attracts him. His influences include painters like Hopper and the Dutch Masters Rembrandt and Vermeer. Man Ray, Diane Arbus, Laslo Moholy-Nagy and Minor White are some of his favorite photographers.