Writing and photography are often separate forms of expression, and never the twain shall meet. Try                  reading an instruction manual for a camera and you'll see what I mean. Here is where I hope words will combine with pictures to make sense of, and enliven the other. Welcome! 

Smile and the whole world smiles with you

September 13, 2017  •  Leave a Comment

As a photographer, I often encounter people who don't want to fully smile. They think there's something about their smile that isn't pretty. Or it reveals too much. And yet every time I photograph somebody, when they do smile fully, I watch as their whole face suddenly pops open. And that's when they are at their most beautiful.  Because their soul is shining through. Whether they have a crooked smile or a missing tooth, or they think they are less than deserving of being seen, I see the person before me smile, and I see an explosion and integration of inner and outer beauty. I see revelation, of a fully, alive human within the smile. Watching this happen, I smile behind my camera, like a trilling canary has taken flight before my eyes. And suddenly, we're all smiling. It's true: Smile, and the world smiles with you. Smile, and the world comes shining through.  I see dimples when she smiles.

"Gratitude" and "The Faces of New Orleans" on exhibit now and almost now

February 22, 2012  •  2 Comments

I love photo shoots -- being on the move, capturing expressions in faces and time, looking for the message in the subject, whether it's sunshine on a snowy path or the smile on the groom's face when the bride turns the corner of the church door.

Exhibit photography provides a different opportunity. It's my turn to fine-tune my own message as I comb through thousands of shots to find the few to set the tone in a gallery, be it "Gratitude" for an upcoming March exhibit at the Unitarian-Universalist Church of  Kent, or "The Faces of New Orleans" for an exhibit, up now through April, at Taco Tonto's Restaurant, also in Kent.

       For the New Orleans exhibit    

I knew I had a small space and a big message. New Orleans is big, not just geographically. But the spirt and passion, the colors of New Orleans, the heart of the people -- all make for a larger-than-life message.


I had space for only 18 pieces. But I was able to display over 100 images, by using 25 small Facebook-sized photos in each of four composite pieces.

How to choose the photos?

I used my emotions. Every NOLA picture that ever sent so much as a shiver down my spine was pulled off my hard drive and into an album. The ones that sent me into convulsions of goose bumps were a definite. But even tingling was acknowledged as acceptance for these composites.


As I chose photos, I began to see the pictures falling naturally into four categories  -- NOLA people; NOLA street scenes; NOLA music: NOLA houses. I wanted the composites to be big pieces , so as to include as many photos as possible, so Sue -- at Campus Camera, who helps me with all my printing -- and I chose 12X18 paper. We used Photoshop to color the background of each piece of paper -- gold, purple and green for the official colors of the city, and turquoise because you see a lot of turquoise in NOLA home decor, and because it is the color of the tropics. Sue made a grid for 24 photos. She dropped the photos in. We moved them around so that like wasn't next to like and heads didn't bleed into trees. We left a little color between each picture.

How to display? So many options, so little money or space

To display the pictures, I used black foam board and artist's tape -- black foam board because it's inexpensive and artist's tape, instead of dry-mounting, because artist's tape means the piece sticks out a little bit, and looks a little more hand-done, kind of like the city of New Orleans. I added foam board hangers http://govart.com/hardware_hangers_foam.html, (thanks, Sue!!) on each corner. I looped wire through the clips, piecing the four composites together, end-on-end, with a half inch in between, to make for a 72-inch long hanging.

Other photos, Hobby Lobby dry-mounted for me on long pieces of black foam board, three to a length of board, which allowed me to size the photos however I wanted. No cropping. I could save the pictures however I liked them on the Mac screen, print them on big paper and trim off the white excess. What a luxury that is. I did not have to crop to a standard size but could crop according to how I believe the picture looks best. The remaining pics, I put in inexpensive Hobby Lobby frames and other frames I already had. I taped a few pictures to different colors of mat board I had lying around and stuck them up here and there.

The last piece was an aerial photo of NOLA, including an identifying shot of the Superdome, and to which I would attach my bio info. I needed this to pop and stand out while also melding, and so I used a wide-wood beat-up turquoise frame, maybe 24X20. We made a big picture, 12X18, taped the photo off-center onto a piece of gold foam board to shadow it and then taped the piece to the turquoise frame. Not IN the frame, but ON the frame. Different -- like the city itself, and Taco Tonto's, too. Decor, pictures, message all feng shui, y'all!


Next up: An exhibit on Gratitude, a whole different place, a whole different feel....


January February (1) March April May June July August September October November December
January February March April May June July August September October November December
January February March April May June July August September October November December
January February March April May June July August September October November December
January February March April May June July August September October November December
January February March April May June July August September (1) October November December