Sometimes life just keeps getting better…well at least this week has been on the upswing. As a late blooming fine art photographer with no formal schooling in a field where the school you attend can gain you access to some masters and mentoring from teachers, it is hard to crack the ice on your own. But it is not impossible – perseverance and tenacity play a roll in following or chasing your dreams.
There are a number of juried competitions that I enter year round, hoping that one of my images will make the cut. Art is subjective and even after you look at the works of the renown jurors, you have no idea what will catch their eye or why. But when it happens, it negates all the rejection notices in the past and elevates your sometimes deflated spirit. As an artist, I do what I do because I love creating. That in itself is usually enough to keep us creative types motivated but we (all ?) seek recognition. And when it comes from people that you admire, all the better.
That’s how I felt when famed photojournalist Peter Turnley selected one of my images last year for an exhibit entitled “A True Story” Peter travels the world on assignments and his photography is sought by magazines, newspapers and galleries. I was humbled and honored.
Sunday, I received an eMail from DarkRoom Gallery in VT, that 2 of my images were selected to exhibit in July. Whoo-hoo… YAY me, If you could see me now, I am doing the happy dance. The subject matter was left to interpretation ” Secrets & Mysteries “, I submitted 4 images:
Chosen by Vermont’s DarkRoom Gallery because of her abilities as a curator, juror, Catherine Edelman, of the Chicago Gallery that bears her name was set to task in reviewing the numerous international photographers that submitted their images. She selected “haunting” and “behind closed doors” to be a part of the group show which will exhibit from July 5 – 29th, with a reception slated for July 13th.
To say I am tickled pink is an understatement, right now I am finding it difficult to contain myself and I can’t wait to inform Sara that her image was selected. That same image is hanging in Annex 24 Gallery in Lancaster through the end of July.
Now I need to put together all the required information on both the images and on myself. Talking about myself does not always come easy for me but talking about my creative process isn’t a problem so I will get that done today. Adorama will print the images for me as I am still having banding issues on my Epson. (ugh!). I will ship the matted prints to the gallery for them to frame. This year, I won’t be able to attend the opening reception on July 13th because I plan to be out of the country, which leads to another reason why I love what I do…
The next project – shooting behind the scenes for Art In Motion’s Art Day Celebration – a fundraising event of music, entertainment and fashion. Something I’ve never done before but am up for the challenge and total experience. Where is all this going to take me? To Haiti, to photo journal Monica Watkins’ mission of bringing art to the underprivlged children at the Diakonos Orphanage. The ‘arts’ aid in opening up a child’s mind, giving them an outlet for expressing themselves and helping them to realize their worth and potential. Expressing oneself through art can mend wounds by feeling free enough to put something down on paper, or through the music notes that run through your head, or the movement in your body as your let the rhythm take over. It’s all so beautiful because it comes to the surface from below. A place so personal, where we hide our feelings in order to protect ourselves, only to realize that expressing our pain, sorrow and even joy, is what sets us free. It empowers us and teaches us that our fears can be conquered by releasing them and we can move forward with an open heart allowing all the good to enter and the bad to exit. Far too often people hold onto their suffering because that is the only thing they feel they can control. But it is in the releasing of it that we regain control of our lives. In my brief encounters with Monica, my heart has been filled with love for the children I will soon meet. You may not be able to join us in Haiti but you can do your part by generously giving what you can. Make a commitment, come to the event, help make it a success and know that giving whatever you can, can make a difference in a child’s life. I feel so blessed to be able to use my art as a means of touching the lives of others. I may not be able to change the world, but I can effect someone’s life in a positive way and that can make a big difference.
It really is easy to touch someone’s life and I love the connection it brings to me. Think of how it makes you feel.