The Indiana Dunes Central Beach

The Park

David Larson

About the Photographer: David Larson

David LarsonDavid Larson grew up in the household of Nils and Emma Linnberg, who were Swedish immigrants, and pioneers of the Indiana Dunes. The Linnbergs began hiking and camping in the dunes in 1905. Their hikes took them down the beach and very close to Diana of the Dunes' shelter; they knew her and talked with her on many occasions. Their home was build in Ogden Dunes in 1927, before roads were constructed, and therefore, building materials had to be brought across the open dunes by horse and sleigh.

During the summer of 1940, the family, including their daughter Peggy and their infant son David, moved into their Ogden Dunes home and began living there year-round. By 1944, David was roaming the dunes and exploring the secrets of the vast blowouts, inter-dunal ponds, swamps, and the massive wooded dunes, which dominated the area. His explorations took him as far east as Dunes Acres, and West to the Gary steel mills.

David graduated from Portage High School where he was Co-editor and Photography Editor of his schools' annual. He graduated from Purdue University with majors in Graphic and Industrial Design and a minor in Psychology. His education also included graduate-level courses at Indiana University in photography.

Hi professional career included graphic design and photography with Container Corporation of America's National Design Group (Chicago), followed by packaging sales with Container Corporation. following this was a 31 year career in the electronics industry. He entered the electronics industry as a manufacturer's representative, and eventually consulted in industrial design, electronics product marketing, acoustic design and engineering, and retail sales training. His talent as an accomplished singer with big bands and jazz groups prompted his interest in the recording arts and led to technical innovations in acoustic design. He was eventually awarded several patents, including a breakthrough status patent in acoustical driver (speaker) design by the US Patent Office. This new technology resulted in the formation of Omnar Technologies, Inc. in San Diego, California, of which David was Vice Chairman and Director of Technology.

David was in the dunes shooting with an SLR cameral at age sixteen (1956). Many of the best surviving color transparencies of the dunes between Ogden Dunes and Dunes Acres, which have been published by the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore, within two publications of the Indiana University PRess, and on the Group 7even website, can be attributed to his work. He was one of the few photographers who had been familiar with that relatively inaccessible area of the dunes, and who photographed those dunes, prior to their destruction in 1963. He has also contributed many images and stories of the West Beach area.

David's photography of the Indiana Dunes provides an in-depth portrait of the area, capturing its very essence -- from well-traveled spots to peaceful hidden treasures. His unique vantage points feature the changing nature of the landscape throughout the seasons and help one experience the Dunes through new eyes.David lives in Ogden Dunes within his renovated boyhood home with his wife Libby, who teaches choral music at the Valparaiso Public Schools, and is the organist, pianist and Choir Director at the Ogden Dunes Community Church. His son David, who is also a Purdue graduate, lives and works in the area, and sings bass next to his dad, in the Ogden Dunes Church choir.

David continues to support both the National Lakeshore, and the Group 7even website with his photographs, and many interesting stories about the Indiana Dunes.