My journey in photography throughout 2018.
I've done a lot of growing in the last year. I wasn't sure which direction I wanted to take my photography. A few years ago I would have said portraiture and landscape. Then when I started college I would have said definitely not portraiture and only landscapes. And then I stumbled into fine art photography and compositing, and my life changed.
In Photo101 I wrote a research paper about Jerry Uelsmann that really opened my eyes to composite imagery. Then in my studio class, the following quarter, I was assigned to create a still life image. At first, I wasn't very excited to create a still life image, but once I thought of a concept and started making it, I found myself getting pulled into making more.
And then I started applying the fine art style from still life photography to the portraits I had to do for assignments. That's when I created, what I believe, to be my first real fine art portrait. An image I titled Woodland Creature Sorrow.
Once I created these two images, I really felt myself get more excited about photography than I ever have been. Don't get me wrong, I still love photographing landscapes and always will, but there's something special about having complete control over the story being told in a fine art portrait or still life.
These photos gave me the curiosity to push further, to see what else I could come up with. And then I started getting more bold. I created the Toxic Beauty series.
I was terrified to post the photos to social media, thinking my friends and family would think I'm a freak. But I challenged myself to do it anyway. And people loved it! Toxic Beauty was then selected to be in my first gallery show at Terrain. The experience of seeing my own art on a wall of a gallery was surreal, and it has shown me to not be afraid to push the boundaries.
I've learned this last year to just "go for it". Submit images to books and galleries. The worst they can say is no and then you move onto the next. Simply asking creates the chance that it will happen, and doing nothing means nothing will ever happen.
In 2018 I was published in The Wire Harp, and had my work displayed in both the Terrain and Kress Gallery.
My goals for 2019 are to keep pushing the boundaries, keep creating interesting art, and most importantly getting it out there.
I want to end 2018 with an image I made at home recently. I didn't know the meaning behind the image at first, I just knew I wanted to make it.
And after taking the photos and editing them the way I wanted it, I started to reflect on what the image meant. Like any fine art it can have countless different meanings to anyone. For me it shows the start of a new path for me. A journey of new art and experiences just beginning. I am beyond excited for 2019 and what it might bring! And I hope you also take the leap to whatever your dreams may be too!
Happy New Year!