SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - Just about all of us feel fortunate to live in the Coastal Empire and Lowcountry with its scenic beauty. But sometimes it is nice to get a reminder from someone who isn’t a native. That’s the case for a graphic designer from Birmingham who made the move to Savannah for work.
The path for Robert Hewitt to Savannah was somewhat accidental, according to him. He was interviewing for a job in Atlanta back in the early 60s when a couple of guys from the Hostess City were there and hired him as an advertising production supervisor. When he and his wife got here, they knew they had made the right move.
“We fell in love with it the first day. But we just loved it because we had never seen anything like it before. It’s just a neat place to be, especially for an artist, as I had a full-time job,” said Robert Hewitt, Artist/Graphic Designer.
Hewitt’s wife says he’s been drawing since he was three and never stopped. They’ve been in Savannah off and on since 1964, first renting at Gaston and Abercorn streets. He accumulated a lot of material here, and his wife told him he ought to put it all together. And it is a lot of material. Thirty-three original watercolors, 88 photos, 59 sketches and 25 antique postcards.
Something had him really thinking he had to get all these images down.
“It’s got to be the architecture, as I’m an architecture freak anyway. With the moss, I had never been around moss before. Basically, the atmosphere, everything seemed unreal from where I was from, it was very industrial, and there’s nothing where I’m from that ever inspired me to do anything,” said Hewitt. “And the people, I’ve never met people like that before down there, no matter who it was, everybody was friendly.”
Many of the photos came from when he was at old Travis Field with the 165th Air National Guard when he would just pick up a camera and go shoot. He is also fond of the entire area from Beaufort to Midway and says this collection is really his love note to Savannah.
“Basically, Savannah loved us and we loved them,” Hewitt said.
Now comes time for the financial work, as his book is currently in the form of an advanced reader copy. And he’s trying to get funding for the final product. He has all his information online at mysavannah.net.
Hewitt and his wife currently live near Boone, N.C.