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Verb: To consider something thoughtfully

Noun: A source of artistic inspiration

One origin of the word muse is the 14th Century Middle English musen, which meant to mutter, gaze meditatively on, and be astonished.  This is a great description of what we do in museums.  In mythology, the Muses were nine goddesses who symbolized the arts and sciences. Today, a muse is a person or place that serves as an artist's inspiration.  Writers, painters, musicians, and other artists may have muses. Muse can also refer to thinking deeply. If you muse about something, you're giving it serious thought. You can't muse in five seconds. Musing, by definition, takes time.  Artists muse on certain ideas for years.  These photos represent the things and ideas that I muse on, and that have been sources of inspiration for me.  I hope they inspire musing in you as well.


Ray Bidegain was born in Tucson, Arizona and started studying photography in high school. At age 17 he began working on weekends for a large studio that offered wedding photography to the Hispanic community in Southern Arizona. Ray graduated from Brooks Institute of Photography in 1981 and returned to Tucson to operate his own studio before moving to Portland, Oregon. After 17 years as a studio portrait photographer, Ray turned to fine art photography, eventually teaching himself the art of platinum printing and, later, wetplate collodion. Fascinated by both the science and the art of photography and printmaking, Ray is an engaging and respected photo instructor throughout the Pacific Northwest.  Ray’s photographs are internationally collected, and his work has been exhibited across the United States, and in France, Germany, and Scotland. He is currently represented by Russ Levin in Monterey.


Born 1959 Tucson, AZ


2014-15 Artist in Residency The University Club of Portland

2012 Finding Beauty, Newspace Center for Photography, Portland Or. Solo Show

2011 Multnomah Art Center Gallery, Portland Oregon.  Group exhibition

2010 Platinum Print festival, Lightbox Photographic Gallery, Astoria Oregon

2010 Nudes in Platinum, PhotoSensualis Gallery, Woodstock, New York Solo show

2009 Photo Alchemy, 23 Sandy gallery, Portland, OR

2009 Ray Bidegain, Lightbox Photographic Gallery, Astoria Oregon solo show

2008 New work in Platinum & Wet plate collodion, Camerawork Gallery, Portland OR solo

2008Displays in Platinum, Buckley Center gallery, University of Portland, Portland OR

2007 Contact Printers Guild Group show, Camerawork Gallery, Portland OR

2007Contact Printers Guild group show, Viewpoint Gallery, Sacramento CA

2005 Recent work in Platinum, Camerawork Gallery, Portland OR Solo Show

2000 Encounters North view gallery, Portland Community College, Portland OR  


Workshop teaching assignments:

Newspace Photographic, Portland, OR ; Platinum printing, digital negatives, wet plate Collodion tintypes and Ambrotypes.  

Inversnaid Photography centre, Inversnaid, Scotland, UK; Platinum printing

Ray Bidegain Studio Workshops, Portland, OR ; Platinum printing, Wet plate collodion ambrotypes and tintypes, The art of the studio portrait and nude, The Artist’s job

Sherwood Foundation for the arts, Sherwood OR ; Platinum printing, Wet plate collodion ambrotypes and tintypes, Portraiture

Lewis and Clark University, Portland, OR ; Wet plate collodion ambrotypes and tintypes

Reed College, Portland, OR ; Wet plate collodion ambrotypes and tintypes



Houston Museum of Fine Arts, Houston TX2 photographs permanent collection

Portland Art Museum, 9 photographs permanent collection

Over 200 private collections worldwide.


1981 Brooks Institute of Photography, Santa Barbara, CA;  B.A. commercial photography


1.) Professor John Mullins, PhD, FRSE
Director, BHF Centre for Research Excellence
Queen's Medical Research Institute          Dr. Mullins has a large collection of my work and is a former student.

2.) Michael Van Buskirk, Portland, OR     Mr. Van Buskirk is a collector and student