Get to know The Flow

Mission statement

The Image Flow aims to celebrate photography in all its forms and to provide a platform for photographers of all levels to create work, exchange ideas, and to innovate the medium of photography. Our staff and instructors are deeply engaged with photographic practice in their daily lives and bring that same dedication to our space each day. We remain committed to making photography accessible to the community by providing public exhibitions, free lectures, workshops, rentals, and imaging services.


In 2008, Stuart Schwartz founded The Image Flow with one initial goal; to provide high-quality photographic printing services to Marin County – because, in the words of Stuart, “it’s not a photograph until it’s a print.”

Since then, it has grown into a space to create, exhibit, discuss, and study all types of photographic expression, both digital and traditional. Based on the early feedback of some of our long-standing clients, we began offering workshops and classes, branching into the realm of photographic education. In 2011, we outgrew our original 1,100 square foot space and expanded into our current location, boasting 6,300 square feet of learning and production facilities.

With this extra space came new creative opportunities; a gallery space exhibiting the work of national and international artists, a large natural light studio, dedicated classroom, traditional darkroom, and an alternative process darkroom has made The Image Flow a destination for photographers in the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond – both seasoned and emerging.

Today, our workshops and services continue to be in support of Stuart’s mantra, driving toward photography in print form. Whether you seek to achieve this goal in the darkroom or using digital images, we possess the tools and expertise needed to help bring your vision to life.



Stuart Schwartz

Stuart Schwartz

Founder & Educator

Stuart Schwartz graduated from the Art Center in 1979 and then spent 35 years as an advertising photographer in the U.S. and Europe. Stuart is comfortable working in the studio, on location, and with all sizes of productions. He continues to shoot for a limited number of clients. Stuart’s personal work spans a variety of styles, from street photography to abstract and mixed media. Stuart founded The Image Flow in 2008 with the vision to empower the avid photographer looking for personal growth in photography.

Chrysta Giffen

Educator & Master Printer

Chrysta Giffen earned her BFA at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia and her MFA at San Jose State University, and has nearly two decades of experience in the photography industry primarily as a digital retoucher. Her client list includes Nike, Disney, Sephora, Discovery Channel, Showtime, New York MagazineWired, and the California Academy of SciencesShe is also an experienced educator, curator, and fine art photographer. Chrysta teaches workshops at The Image Flow, works one-on-one with clients on digital retouching and printing projects, and curates exhibitions.

Nathan Lomas

Educator & Master Printer

Nathan Lomas hails from Buffalo, NY. He developed his passion photography at the tender age of five when his father gave him a Ricoh camera. He has a BFA from the College of Creative Studies in Detroit and an MFA in Imaging Arts from the Rochester Institute of Technology in New York. He is an adjunct professor at the Academy of Art in San Francisco, owns his own photo studio in Alameda where he specializes in 19th-century tintype photography, and at The Image Flow, works with digital restoration, film scanning, and printing, as well as teaching workshops and working one-on-one with clients.

Barbara Bowman


After studying photography in high school and college, Barbara Bowman turned to the marketing aspect of the medium. She has held a wide variety of roles working with commercial advertising photographers, from studio manager to photographer representative. You can find Barbara at The Flow a few days a week, working on photography and program outreach.

Anton Belov

Production Assistant

Anton Belov graduated from California College of the Arts with a BFA in Illustration and is a freelance graphic designer. At The Image Flow, he does a little bit of everything – from designing fliers and updating our website, to offering valuable advice on our range of photo services. When he’s not at The Flow, he can be found freelancing for a number of clients such as Stanford Children’s Health, Saint Mary’s College of California, or the Paramount.