Karlest Ford

For over thirty years, I have been part of Detroit’s professional photographic community.

Starting as a student high school photographer at Kettering and now as an established professional photographer in the southeast Michigan area. My first job in the photo arena was as a studio assent then photographers assent and then photographer at one of the largest portrait studio serving Detroit, Cranes Studios, and it is there that I began honing in on becoming a photographer.

After worked for Cranes for two years, I pursued two objectives, becoming a student at the College for Creative Studies, which I did, and working for General Motors Photographic, which I did. Those three opportunities were major building blocks that gave me the knowledge, understand, and professionalism I have today.

Of course, other things might qualify me as one of your venders, four years post-production in photography and a video at General Motors, seven years in the mural and photo print & slide shows and production at Meteor Photo and Color Detroit.

I served twenty-eight years as a Public Relations Photographer with St. John Hospital, photographing Surgical & Medical procedures, major events, annual reports, brochures, creating displays, and producing corporate videos as well as over ten years as a freelance photographer, see client list.

Over the years I have satisfied many clients and won many awards, photographing the likes of, Maya Angelou, Tipper Gore,  Bob Hope, Bill Cosby, Suzann Summers,…Mayors, Governors, Judges, Politicians, Actors, Singers, Sports Celebrities, the famous and the not so famous, people old and young from all walks of life and social backgrounds, and with each photo taken I capture the smiles and tears of life.

Projects can be viewed on my web page by clicking below, where you will find over 62,000 of my images and projects.

Work Experience 

  • Crane Portrait Studios
  • General Motors Photographic 
  • Color Detroit Photo
  • Metro Photo Company 
  • Senior Photographer – St. John Hospital

Educational background

  • Collage for Creative Studies 
  • New Horizon Computer Learning Centers 

Member of

  • Professional Photographers of America
  • Past Board member, St John Hospital Guild
  • Past Board Member, Detroit Rotary  


Individual portraits are taken on-site, lighting, and portrait background are set-up in the office or conference room of that person or at a location that is convenient for that person or multiple members of that organization.

If needed, blemishes and facial distractions are reduced. The individual cost for a portrait Starts at $150.00, large groups or any unforeseen circumstances are negotiable.

Current & Past Clients

Clients List
  • General Motors
  • Presbyterian Villages of Michigan
  • Advantage Health
  • Beaumont Hospital
  • Curis Enterprises
  • Center for Creative Studies
  • Enterprising Health 
  • Focus Hope
  • Habitat for Humanity, Oakland 
  • Henry Ford Academy
  • Cornerstone School
  • Hospice of Michigan
  • Crittenton Hospital
  • Fontbonne SJH
  • Holley Institute
  • Homestead Management Group
  • Samaritas, (Lutheran Social Services)
  • Mendelson-Kornblum
  • Michigan Institute of Urology
  • South Oakland Shelter
  • St. John Hospital
  • Providence Hospital
  • Guild
  • Trinity Health
  • The Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History
  • Ascension Health
  • Seasons Hospice 
  • Tenaglia Textiles
  • YMCA of Metropolitan Detroit
  • Boys & Girls Club of Metropolitan Detroit
  • University of Michigan Dearborn
  • University of Michigan
  • Detroit Parent Network
  • Boulevard Health
  • Eastside Community Network
  • Chase Bank 
  • Wayne State University 
  • A H Peters Funeral Home
  • Wayne & Joan Webber Foundation
  • Riverbend Community