Friday, September 30, 2011

Friday Photo...

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Experimentation Does a Girl Good

I've always been a fan of everything Polaroid. I got the chance to take a workshop in Polaroid transfers at the Light Factory several years ago. I wanted to be able to play with my images.

We went through all the normal procedures... and then I asked the instructor if it were possible to do a "double exposure" using two different slides.
She thought for a second and then said, "I don't know... why don't you try it?"

Hope & Roses (above) is the result of that little experiment.

Sometimes it's a drag to experiment... It can cost a lot of money (the Polaroid transfers are pretty cost-prohibitive) and when/if you don't get a result you like, it can chip away at your creative bravado. The truly difficult part is not thinking of ways to experiment, but accepting the result, good or bad, and embracing it as your own.
I guess that means I should dig up one of the images I didn't really like from the workshop. But the truth is, I liked them all.

Saturday, September 24, 2011


My mother is an intelligent woman.

I'm not sure if it's an official "rule", but it's encouraged when visiting her house that before any of us kids leave, we must visit the basement and collect something from our childhood. It's a slow way to clean out all the clutter, but it keeps us from having to clean it out all at once (which is a frightening prospect!).

Even though I know, when I go down those stairs, I'm going to experience an arachnoleptic fit at some point while I'm in the basement, I still go willingly... because there is always some treasure to find. Like this:
That's the Polaroid camera (on the left) my mother used to document our family when my brother and I were kids. It weighs about as much as a brick and it'll smash your fingers when you close it. But it holds great sentimental value because it lets me see what my mother saw when I was little.
My mother has always been supportive of my creative endeavors with photography. She never pushed it on me, but she did always express her approval. I think I inherited my mother's (and even her mother's) desire to document the important, quiet moments of life with a camera.

I should probably have saved this post for her birthday... or for Mother's Day. But I couldn't wait.
I'm going to go see if I can dig up some film at the Impossible Project. If they don't have any, I'll keep looking and see what I can come up with...

Thanks Mom!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

A New Direction...

I've come to the conclusion that I am, for all intents and purposes, really a flower photographer. But I have to keep reminding myself of that fact over and over again. I'm not sure why... I do try my best to make things more difficult than they should be.

This image is from a new flower series that I started last year. I've posted some of the images I've been making along the way. What I think I've learned from this series is that making things simpler ends up making me happier.
The series is still evolving, but now that I've let go of some of the shtick that I started with, it just feels more right... more of my own mind... simple but in an elegant way. And it's even in color!

(And fyi Peter, it's not shot with that lens you despise...)

Monday, September 12, 2011

Seeing a Little Differently

I started visiting Daniel Stowe Botanical Gardens in 2010 because I needed a second field trip for my Intro to DSLR students when my classes ran for 8 weeks instead of 6 weeks.
I decided that first trip that I would limit myself to one lens. I chose my Lensbaby because, quite frankly, I needed to practice with it. On subsequent trips, I even limited myself to one aperture.
I didn't necessarily make these initial choices based purely on creative criteria --- I never like weighing myself down with too much equipment.
My laziness in lugging stuff does however benefit me creatively! Limiting myself on available equipment forces me to rely on those technical aspects and fit myself and my subject into those parameters... Kind of like in college when my costume design professor assigned our class the task of designing costumes for Romeo & Juliet using only two colors. The limits worked for that class and I believe those limits still work for other creative endeavors.

I've actually got enough of a visual theme from that experimentation that I now have a fresh floral series. I've started editing it and plan to post it on my main website within the next couple of weeks.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

A Photo for a Sunday Afternoon...

"A Play of Light"

I received an email from my Creativity and the Photographer II workshop teacher, Sean Kernan, earlier this week. He attached a blog post from another photographer that really resonated with me.
As I slog my way through my life as a photographer,
I often encounter the voice of self-doubt. I hate that voice.
But luckily I have a great group of supporters who cheer me on when I become moody and morose.

I know some people would look at the image above and say that it's not a good photograph. I disagree. It is the epitome of "writing with light" and it makes me happy that I shot it.
Needless to say, I'm in a bit of a period of transition with my shooting. I'm not exactly sure where it's leading me, but things look more like what's going on inside my head --- not exactly perfect, but oddly beautiful and new. If I get to where I think I'm going, I really don't think that voice of self-doubt can be heard there...

Thursday, September 1, 2011

A Little Preview...

Here's to testing the waters.... I am exhibiting and selling some of my work at the NoDa All Arts Market tomorrow night, September 2nd, 2011. It's an exercise in what I consider to be one of my toughest challenges --- promoting my own work.

I believe in my own abilities and the validity of my own work... There just seems to be a disconnect when someone asks me to explain why they should like my work enough to pay for it. This always stumps me --- I mean, if you truly like something and want it, why would you need someone to explain your own wants s& desires to you? Curious.

In any event, if you're going to be near the corner of North Davidson and 36th Streets in Charlotte, stop by the Neighborhood Theater and visit me at booth #230. We can have a philosophical discussion and maybe even a frosty adult beverage.