Dels' Early Years

Influences and Experiences

Disney Magnet School

When I was young, I attended a two-room private Christian school. My life changed when, for a brief but sweet period beginning in sixth grade, I was bused to the north side of town to a magnet school. During a summer program, I was introduced to photography for the first time. For high school, my mother returned me to private school, but it was too late-art was already an indelible part of my life.

Photos printed at

Disney Magnet School. 

This photo is of Mr. Bridges my eighth grade teacher at my 8th grade graduation. He was my first male African-American teacher. He was as cool as he looks. Norman took these photos and developed them at the Southside Community Art Center.

This is the first and only pageant I participated in. I designed and made the dress. Photos by Norman Echols.

This is a picture of my brother Norman. He was a big influence in my life. One day we went on a tour to the S. Side Community Art Center and the School of the Art Institute where I ended up going to college.

He made this self portrait at the Southside Community Arts Center in Chicago during the late 70s. There’s a bullet in his shoulder in this picture from an incident he had a few years earlier that changed his life and led him to photography. He attended William Dawson Skills Center and worked for Motorola as a drafter. He was a lefty. He passed away in 2006. (The very short draft of his story.)

1st magazine job. Published by Lois Ulrey 

Modeling during the 90's.