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Retired Milwaukee photographer captured community, big events

Retired Milwaukee photographer captured community, big events

The sound of a camera clicking brings excitement to photographer Robert Bell. 

“It’s like a machine gun,” Bell said. 

Robert Bell has been firing off rounds of film for much of his adult life. He used his passion to capture community and monumental Milwaukee events for decades. 

“I used to work for the Milwaukee Times, Milwaukee Courier and I just went at it,” Bell said. “What I like about those jobs is I was in the mix and being in the mix, I was taking pictures of history.

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Hundreds of photographs line the walls of Bell’s home studio. From local political leaders to former First Lady Michelle Obama and Former President Barack Obama on the campaign trail. 

“I was at one of Barack Obama’s affairs. He was shaking hands and I went snap snap snap the picture and I caught him,” Bell said. 

The retired photographer is grateful for the adventures. 

“I learned from people, and I met a lot of people when I took those pictures. It was a reward to me,” he said. 

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Most photographers capture moments. Robert Bell captured life’s bigger picture. Finding joy in the journey.  

“Once you find that enjoyment, just do it and do it the best you can,” Bell said. “It’s not all about the money. It’s just being able to take pictures.”