The Day in the Life...

Bob Jackson is the legendary “Corn Star” at the San Diego County Fair. This photo shoot came to life when my dear friend asked me if I would photograph her dad at his famous corn stand. I knew Bob had this business for many years, but I had no idea the impact this photo shoot would have on me as a photographer, a business owner and even a daughter.

“This was the first photo of the day and as soon as I took the shot I knew this was going to be a special time with Bob.”   It was 56 years ago that Bob started working with his parents at the LA County fair operating food stands and in 1974 he came to Del Mar where the legend was born. The first 4 years he sold BBQ, but it wasn’t until 1978 when he made his mark by being the first vendor to sell grilled corn to the masses. It became a huge sensation and still is today.

“This was the first photo of the day and as soon as I took the shot I knew this was going to be a special time with Bob.”

It was 56 years ago that Bob started working with his parents at the LA County fair operating food stands and in 1974 he came to Del Mar where the legend was born. The first 4 years he sold BBQ, but it wasn’t until 1978 when he made his mark by being the first vendor to sell grilled corn to the masses. It became a huge sensation and still is today.

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I asked Bob to show me how he shucks the corn. I had never watched the process with 100% engagement until that day, and once I was in…I was ALL in. His hands told the story of a man who is a master of his craft, his weathered and bruised skin showed his many years of experience and attention to detail that made him the superstar that he is. My camera kept bouncing from his face to his hands and I knew this was someone who was living his passion, it was a wonderful sight to see and capture.

I asked Bob to show me how he shucks the corn. I had never watched the process with 100% engagement until that day, and once I was in…I was ALL in. His hands told the story of a man who is a master of his craft, his weathered and bruised skin showed his many years of experience and attention to detail that made him the superstar that he is. My camera kept bouncing from his face to his hands and I knew this was someone who was living his passion, it was a wonderful sight to see and capture.

As I spent more time with Bob I learned he is a pioneer in more ways than one. He is someone that wants to produce an exceptional product and to be exceptional he knows he must also be highly efficient. He came across this machine that would quickly strip the kernels right off the cob and it proved to be quite the find. Bob took some serious risks to acquire this gem, but he would soon discover it would be a major part of his well oiled machine and his pride and joy.

As I spent more time with Bob I learned he is a pioneer in more ways than one. He is someone that wants to produce an exceptional product and to be exceptional he knows he must also be highly efficient. He came across this machine that would quickly strip the kernels right off the cob and it proved to be quite the find. Bob took some serious risks to acquire this gem, but he would soon discover it would be a major part of his well oiled machine and his pride and joy.

Throughout our time together Bob made me laugh and smile, I think this image sums it up quite nicely. He is not only a savvy business man, but also charming, kind and very accommodating. I knew I was in the presence of someone very special and I was incredibly grateful for the opportunity to document this day in the life of Bob Jackson.

Throughout our time together Bob made me laugh and smile, I think this image sums it up quite nicely. He is not only a savvy business man, but also charming, kind and very accommodating. I knew I was in the presence of someone very special and I was incredibly grateful for the opportunity to document this day in the life of Bob Jackson.

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Before I said goodbye I asked Bob to take me around the fairgrounds for a bit. I knew this time would not disappoint and Bob showed me that he was well loved with each encounter we had. This is his second home and I had a great time meeting some of his “fair” family. I felt the love that they all had for him and the joy it brought Bob to see all their faces as well. It warmed my heart and made me miss my own dad. I started to wish I had just one more time to laugh and smile with him again.  There were so many lessons learned from my time with Mr. Jackson, the greatest one was the importance of seeing the beauty in those you love DOING what they love. My dear friend will now have these images of her father forever and she will smile every time she looks at them…what could be better than that?

Before I said goodbye I asked Bob to take me around the fairgrounds for a bit. I knew this time would not disappoint and Bob showed me that he was well loved with each encounter we had. This is his second home and I had a great time meeting some of his “fair” family. I felt the love that they all had for him and the joy it brought Bob to see all their faces as well. It warmed my heart and made me miss my own dad. I started to wish I had just one more time to laugh and smile with him again.

There were so many lessons learned from my time with Mr. Jackson, the greatest one was the importance of seeing the beauty in those you love DOING what they love. My dear friend will now have these images of her father forever and she will smile every time she looks at them…what could be better than that?