Frank Stefanko is a fine art photographer with connections to New Jersey performers Patti Smith and Bruce Springsteen. Stefanko’s early photographs, taken in the 1960s through the 1980s, reveal the emerging careers of the two young artists. Frank retains an ongoing working relationship with both Springsteen and Smith. A limited edition book was released in November 2017, entitled Bruce Springsteen: Further Up the Road. The book chronicles the 40-year working relationship between Stefanko and Bruce Springsteen. It contains personal stories and hundreds of Frank’s photos from the 1960s to 2017, many never before seen.
Stefanko was born in Philadelphia in 1946, and has been absorbed by photography since he was given an old box-camera when about seven years of age. Frank Senior (an accomplished carpenter) built a darkroom for his son in their row-home basement in Camden, NJ. Among youthful Stefanko’s early “teachers” and inspirations were stark, black-and-white film noir movies, cinematographers such as James Wong Howe, Fritz Lang, and reality photographers such as Diane Arbus, who shot every-day people in natural settings. Stefanko received fine-art training at Glassboro College (now Rowan University) in Glassboro, New Jersey.