May 25, 2006


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Scenes from the air
Longtime Manchester photographer offers first-ever exhibit at City Hall
By Heidi Masek

Bob Raiche has been a professional photographer for decades but this is the first time his photographs have been on exhibit.

Raiche does family portraits as well as aerial shots. He chose about 60 of his less commercial shots for the exhibit, going on now at Manchester City Hall. His favorite is an aerial time-exposure shot he took of Manchester in the 1970s that is printed at 40 inches by 60 inches.

“I’m still impressed when I look at it. And it’s been 35 years,” he said.

Sponsoring the show is the Manchester Rotary Club, an organization with which Raiche has been active for a number of years. Raiche has also been heavily involved in the New Hampshire Professional Photographer’s Association.

For aerial shots, Raiche hires pilots from Nashua, Manchester or Concord. The trick is choosing just the right perfectly clear day; otherwise there could be dark spots or shadows from clouds in the aerial photography. “Nice puffy clouds that you like to see in postcards are the worst,” he said. Because he has to go up on clear days, it’s not dangerous.

“When I look out the window, I’m still always amazed at looking at all of New Hampshire or Vermont or wherever I am.”

“It’s fun to do, and I get paid for it, and I usually invite different people to come up for a plane ride,” he said.

The selection of photos on exhibit “spans a good part of my career,” Raiche said. Raiche had not attempted an exhibit before because he hadn’t really thought to do it.

“It’s a lot of work,” he said.

Raiche will be there with his photos on Open Doors Manchester trolley night, Thursday, June 15, from 5 to 8 p.m. The exhibit runs through June 27. The Mayor’s assistant for the arts, Georgie Reagan, called it “an amazing selection of artful … wizardry and deception mixed with grand and beautiful nostalgic historic scenes,” and said, “This is an exhibit not to be missed and one we have longed to do for some time.”

Raiche was busy this week pumping out his home, which is on the Merrimack River. The ground was saturated, he said, so water seeped into his basement.

“Nothing so bad that it was an absolute disaster, just very bothersome, very inconvenient,” he said..

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