Todoroff enjoyed photography as a teen-ager with his father’s cameras and was photo editor of the college newspaper while getting his degree in chemistry. That background led to work in Stockholm as a darkroom technician and assistant to one of Sweden’s top fashion photographers. His first job in Eureka in 1972 was for KIEM-TV, which included commercial photography when television ads were done with 35mm slides. His career as a computer programmer/analyst contributes to the technical approach that Gary often uses now in commercial and aerial photography.
Todoroff worked with the Remote Sensing Department of Humboldt State University and the US Coast Guard, when he designed a vertical aerial camera mount for Dolphin HH-65 helicopters. After two thousand stereo-pair aerial photographs, Gary was appointed as the first photographer with the Coast Guard Art Program. Todoroff has documented USCG activities at air and boat stations from Hawaii to Boston, programmed a Maritime Security photographic database, instructed helicopter flight crews in aerial photography, and even survived the dunk-tank for inverted helicopter egress training.
A Coast Guard Certificate of Merit from Commandant Admiral Loy led to other USCG volunteer assignments, including aerial photography over Kitty Hawk during the centennial celebration of the Wright Brothers first powered flight. Many Todoroff photographs appear in the coffee table book “The Coast Guard”, published by the Foundation for Coast Guard History in the Hugh Later Levin Associates’ volumes that focus on military services.
Some of Todoroff’s other work includes travel photographs for Lonely Planet, a recent pair of book covers for “California Hiking” and “California Camping” by Avalon-Foghorn guidebooks, and a Barnes and Noble lighthouse calendar. His aerial photographs hang in the offices of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in San Francisco, Vicksburg, Mississippi, and Washington, D.C. Fine art prints decorate homes, offices and hotels locally and around the country.