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Artist Ray Turner, 55, of Pasadena gets ready to photograph several Bakersfield residents Thursday at the Bakersfield Museum of Art. He will paint the images onto sapphire glass and put into an exhibition. The entire project will take Turner about a year to put together. His show will then be on display at the Bakersfield Museum of Art starting May 7, 2015. The show will include the 40 portraits of Bakersfield residents along with 40 or more others.

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Casey Christie / The Californian

Artist Ray Turner, left, has help with the lighting from Bakersfield Museum of Art chief curator Vikki Cruz while photographing Bakersfield resident Marcia Giumarra ,whose portrait will be part of the display at the BMOA next year along with 40 other Bakersfieldians.

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Casey Christie / The Californian

Pasadena artist Ray Turner, 55, takes photos of many Bakersfield citizens Thursday at the Bakersfield Museum of Art. The images will be painted into portraits by Turner.

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Casey Christie / The Californian

Marcia Giumarra was photographed by artist Ray Turner, right, while then-curator Vikki Cruz helped with lighting in 2014.

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Casey Christie / The Californian

Bakersfield Museum of Art chief curator Vikki Cruz, right, looks over the shoulder of artist Ray Turner at the photos he took of Bakersfield resident Marcia Giumarra, right, that will be included with portraits done by Turner in the BMOA showing in May 2015.

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Casey Christie / The Californian

Monsignor Craig Harrison is photographed by Ray Turner in 2014. Harrison's portrait is now on display at BMoA.

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Casey Christie / The Californian

Artist Ray Turner enjoys his work Thursday at the Bakersfield Museum of Art where he will have a show next year.

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Casey Christie / The Californian

Local musician Red Simpson checks out his picture on the back of artist Ray Turner's digital camera Thursday at the Bakersfield Museum of Art. The photo will be part of Turner's art display at the gallery in May 2015.

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Casey Christie / The Californian

Musician Red Simpson has his photo taken by artist Ray Turner, Thursday, at the Bakersfield Museum of Art.

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Casey Christie / The Californian

Artist Ray Turner took photos of musician Red Simpson, right, last year to use as reference. Simpson's portrait is one of about 50 painted by Turner of Bakersfield residents.

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Casey Christie / The Californian

After his photo shoot musician Red Simpson walks out of the Bakersfield Museum of Art Thursday past rows of the current art work on display at the gallery on R Street.

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Casey Christie / The Californian

Local videographer Michael Fagans, right, gets in a good angle and the right lighting on artist/photographer Ray Turner, center, after he photographed CSUB chorale director Robert Provencio Thursday at the Bakersfield Museum of Art.

They came in one at a time to be photographed by Pasadena artist Ray Turner.

Some were nervous and a bit serious, like local musician Red Simpson, while others kept it light like the Rev. Monsignor Craig Harrison.

Although both Simpson and Harrison are accustomed to the limelight, both reacted differently.

It seems like a wonderful project -- Turner takes your picture and over the next year, he paints your portrait on a 12 x 12 inch piece of sapphire glass from the photos.

They will be part of a show along with many more portraits from different areas called "Population" at the Bakersfield Museum of Art in May 2015.

Forty in all from Bakersfield will be photographed with Turner's digital Canon camera. Then the photos will be converted into stark, contrasty, colorful painted portraits by Turner, assuming they will be similar to those in three of his published books that were displayed Thursday in the same room where he was doing his photography.

A video crew was making a video for the museum during the morning photo shoot and were blending in so well you didn't know they were there.

Some window light and some artificial light, which was being held by Vikki Cruz, chief curator of the Bakersfield Museum of Art, was used for the photos.

The project is a big undertaking, but like most art projects, well worth the effort.