art, fall leaves & her | part 1

A painting requires a little mystery, some vagueness, and some fantasy. When you always make your meaning perfectly plain you end up boring people.
— Edgar Degas

Washington, DC - Part 1. Art.

Last month I traveled to Washington, DC for an all too short mother-daugther weekend and spent some time exploring at The National Gallery of Art and The Phillips Collection. Not suprisingly, the paintings I am most drawn to are similar to the photographs that inspire me. John Singer Sargent's Street in Venice immediately caught my eye so I bought a small print for myself, as well as a Rothko in the largest size for sale.  

Photographs inspired by The Art of the Unexpected

(paintings photographed are Rothko, Renoir, Cassatt, Vermeer, Sargent, Picasso, daVinci, Cezanne, and Whistler)

For Part 2 go here.

be your own yardstick

Tangible growth is measured in many ways, measuring your child’s height with markings on a wall and birthday candles celebrating another year of life are but a few. How about artistic growth?  

The first set of images is from 2 years ago. At the time I took these I vividly remember being stuck. Stuck with only shooting during the perfect hours of the day, and stuck wanting to create images that I loved. Tired of those blown out skies, I turned on my flash (gasp!) and took some shots to document our time at the strawberry field.  Three months later I discovered Light & Life by Kellie Hatcher at The Define School.  It was the missing chapter of every photography class, book, and blog post I had read.   

Fast forward almost 2 years - we went back to the strawberry fields in the middle of the day and I didn’t take photos.  Instead I made artistic choices, broke some photography rules, and created intentional images of what I saw that day with my heart.   Do I think I’ve figured it out and mastered it? Not a chance.  Did I have to quiet the noise in my head asking will anyone look at this and see the growth I see?  Absolutely.  Even as I click publish I am pushing those thoughts aside. 

While I may cringe when I look back, I also see where I am now and where I want to go.  I see effort and mistakes, and I see growth.   They are my yardstick, I measure today to yesterday, to last month, to last year and ask myself what is different, better, and always what’s next.

Be your own yardstick.

just a hobbyist

I have been repeating those words for years, prefacing my photography with them - maybe even hiding behind them. Does the word ‘just’ lower the expectation of the viewer or have I been using it as a safeguard to sharing an imperfect image? Neither is my truth, yet until recently I let it define me.

Since I was just a hobbyist, I was on the fence about enrolling in a class to build a website.  What would be the purpose for a non-professional?  After a few emails with Sharon, I knew I had to just go for it and I am so grateful I did.

When I read the first lesson of Un-branding with Sharon McKeeman of The Define School, I knew it was going to be a special experience.  Sharon generously shared her knowledge and personal journey.  Her feedback was encouraging and genuine. The most surprising part of the six weeks was finding inspiration in my own images and recognizing them as art.   

My truth is that I am passionate about this hobby; that I have gone from being my worst critic to falling in love with those same images that were far from perfect; and although I shoot for myself I would love for you to connect with my images and words.  I may not draw, sculpt or paint, but my art is the images I create with my camera.

I am a passionate hobbyist.  I am an artist.