Bruce Dale: World-Class Photographer Donates Collections
Spring-Summer 2014 | page 12
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Millions of readers of National Geographic have seen and enjoyed the photographs of Bruce Dale. During his 30 years working for the magazine, more than 2,000 of his photographs were published in its pages. Now, 35 of his photographs are on display in The Hitt Family Center for Radiation Oncology at Virginia Hospital Center.
“As I was hanging my photographs in the Center and looking at lighting options, I saw several patients stop to look at them,” Bruce says. “I’m glad they’re enjoying them.”
Bruce, a former White House Photographer of the Year, also was twice selected as Magazine Photographer of the Year. Among many other accolades, one of his photographs is aboard the Voyager Spacecraft that recently departed our solar system.
He has photographed in over 75 countries during his career.
“I’m more of a generalist than most photographers,” he says. “I’ve taken high- altitude photographs from an open plane at 30,000 feet, as well as underwater. I’ve worked on holograms, traveled overland with Gypsies from England to India, and made ten trips to China. I like the diversification of different assignments. I’m very proud of my landscapes.”
Bruce donated the photographs—which he personally selected and hand-printed— to Virginia Hospital Center “in appreciation for what Dr. Hong and his team did for me,” he says.
Diagnosed with recurrent prostate cancer, Bruce had consulted with other specialists, who had given him only a 20 percent chance of a cure. When he went to see Robert Hong, MD, Chief of Radiation Oncology, for a second opinion, he learned that treatment with the Calypso® System offered an excellent chance of curing his cancer.
Using image-guided technology, Calypso keeps radiation focused precisely on the tumor, resulting in fewer side effects and better quality of life for patients. Virginia Hospital Center is one of the few hospitals on the East Coast to offer Calypso. Bruce was treated in 2013 and had virtually no side effects. His cancer is now in remission.
During his first appointment with Dr. Hong, Bruce discovered that they shared a love of photography.
“That really bonded us,” Bruce says. “He’s quite a good photographer.” “What impressed me about Bruce,” Dr. Hong says, “was his humility.”
The photographs hanging in The Hitt Family Center for Radiation Oncology— primarily landscapes of America and still lifes—are so beautiful, they almost look like paintings. Dr. Hong believes that Bruce’s beautiful photographs are playing a valuable role in the healing process for patients undergoing radiation therapy.
“We know radiation kills cancer, but there’s a lot more to patient care and healing than just chemotherapy, radiation therapy and surgery,” Dr. Hong says. “With his ability to capture the beauty around us and display it in such a meaningful way—in my opinion, that also assists healing. Bruce’s pictures will make a lot of difference to our patients. They remind us to take moments to appreciate the world around us.”
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