I was happy to learn today that this series, Sacred, is a Finalist in the Critical Mass competition. The series is available for showing and collecting; let’s get it out in front of a viewing audience!
Those in the Southeast US will have the opportunity to see one of my handmade encaustic-based photographs this summer. I’ve been invited to show Contemplating Flight in the Diffusion show at SE Center for Photography. Curated by Lori Vrba, Diffusion will showcase a host of ‘artfully crafted’ (often handmade) photography. It’s going to be a beautiful show.
If you’re in the Greenville, South Carolina area, drop by SE Center for Photography between July 5 and August 31. A reception will be held August 2 from 6-8pm.
We have such a vibrant photo community here in Portland. Friends Jim Lommasson and Paige Stoyer worked this year to put together a wonderful show of photographs featuring the stories of US immigrants. A moving counterpoint to the national angst over the immigration issue, these photos and stories breathe life into this often two-dimensional debate.
I had the privilege of talking with Sosan (pictured here) about her life as an immigrant from Kabul, Afghanistan. Moving to Russia and then the US with her small family, she’s had to learn English, learn American culture, and work hard to pursue her education. It was a fascinating conversation, and I was honored to be able to create this portrait of her.
We say in Afghanistan everyone has a moon, illuminating our lives. The moon has a bright side and a dark side. I was born in Kabul, Afghanistan. The dark side of my moon occurred when I was five years old, and the Taliban occupied my country. That time was dreadful for all Afghanis, but mostly for women. All schools were closed for women, so I went to a secret school for five years. I had a very hard time, but my parents pushed me to keep trying.
I graduated from high school in 2008, when I was 18 years old. In 2009 I was married, then I moved to Moscow for a better life and education. However, life in Russia was even harder than in my own country. Finally, I came to the United States in September 2011.
Now I am living a better life, but it is not easy. I have not allowed the language barrier or any of life’s hardships to stop me from continuing my education. I am balancing motherhood with learning English and going to school. This is not only for myself, but for my family’s security. My greatest life purpose is to serve those who have limited opportunities in their lives. I want to be able to encourage others to work hard to achieve their goals. My goals are to complete my prerequisite classes, earn my associate’s degree, and then my bachelor’s degree of science, hoping to work in a medical career.
Most people assume that eating disorders only affect young women. KATU News recently ran a segment on how men are affected by eating disorders, and they asked if they could interview me on the subject. I was happy to help, and spent an afternoon talking with Deb Knapp about it. I shared some of my own experience with an eating disorder when I was younger, and talked about how men are also significantly affected by eating disorders, yet are usually unwilling to talk about it.
The resulting segment showcases our conversation, and images from my book Skeleton in the Closet (which you can order on Amazon here).
This month I received the amazing gift of time at a new artist residency program at Pine Meadow Ranch, in Central Oregon. Having time to focus solely on artmaking, in a setting surrounded by 7 mountains, a river, and abundant wildlife, was both productive and restful. It was also challenging, as I battled warped panels, failed experiments, discouragement, and bloodied fingers…but that’s all in a day’s work as an artist. #artistslife
I was also able to spend time with friends old and new, and take some beautiful pictures, in addition to working in the encaustic photography medium.
In addition to some experimentation, I was able to work on a new project with the working title of “Holy”. It consists of 5 large-scale encaustic/photo portraits, honoring people who are often victimized in our current socio-political climate. I don’t usually work on projects that have reference to current events or politics, but it was time. It’s my form of Resistance.
A beautifully produced compendium of alternative process photography, they outdid themselves this year, with nine chapters of amazing work:
Nine Chapters: I. Cabinet of Curiosities // II. Transfiguration // III. Nostalgia // IV. Natural Landscape // V. Enigmatic Figures // VI. Organichrome // VII. Geometric Personality // VIII. Human Condition // IX. Sanctuary Shelter
I was honored to be featured among these great photographers: Addison Brown, Alan Ostreicher, Alex Delapena, Aline Mare, Allen Morris, Amaury Orozco & Sev Collazo, Amy Kanka Valadarsky, Andreas Olesen, Andy Mattern, Angela Franks Wells, Anne Campbell, Anne-Laure Autin, Antonio Martinez, Barbara Kyne, Benjamin Montague, Bill Vaccaro, Bob Cornelis, Brianna Tadeo, C E Morse, Carol Erb, Caroline Fudala, Clare O’Neill, Claude Peschel Dutombe, Dawn Surratt, Diana Bloomfield, Diana Nicholette Jeon, Elizabeth Raymer Griffin, Elizabeth Stone, Ellie Ivanova, Fritz Liedtke, Galina Kurlat, Harland Vine, Heather Perera, Heidi Clapp Temple, Heidi Kirkpatrick, J. M. Golding, James Wigger, Joseph Deiss, Joshua Myers, Joshua Sarinana, Kathleen Donohoe, Kathryn Mayo, Ken Ball, KK DePaul, Kon Markogiannis, Linda Alterwitz, Linda Barsotti, Margo Geddes, Matthew Finley, Maureen Delaney, Melanie Walker, Michael Kirchoff, Michelle Rogers Pritzl, Mike Hoover, Molly McCall, Noelle McCleaf, Rachel Wolf, Ray Bidegain, Robert Calafiore, Robert Moran, Sandra Klein, Sara Silks, Stacie Ann Smith, Susan de Witt, Tamsen Wojtanowski, Thomas Michael Alleman, Tom & Lois White, Troy Colby, Wendi Schneider, and Wendy Verity.
Purchase your copy here!
Between 2000 and 2013, I had the privilege of photographing at an amazing place here in Portland: DaVinci Arts Middle School. I began photographing there while working on my senior thesis project at Pacific NW College of Art. I enjoyed it so much that I kept coming back, speaking in photography classes, teaching workshops, and creating new work of my own. The students have always been inspiring to me. While many people would write off adolescents, I find them funny, goofy, thoughtful, brilliant.
This summer I photographed the wedding of a former DaVinci student, and in doing so reconnected with some of the students, and the school itself. When they invited me to show my work in the school’s art gallery, I jumped at the chance.
For two months, a sampling of my work from 13 years of photographing there will be shown in their art gallery. I’m also working with the administration to give a talk in their assembly, not only speaking about art and artmaking, but also about how this work reflects and can influence their core values as a school community. (How many schools do you that know would do that?)
Next time, join me on one of my workshops or photography tours. I’d love to have you!
How would you like to spend 10 days photographing in Tibet and China? Wake up in luxury lodgings very day, and enjoy amazing vistas, delicious food, real people, behind-the-scenes access to traditional Tibetan artisans, and one-on-one photo mentoring with photographer and artist Fritz Liedtke.
All skill levels and types of photography are welcome. Fritz is an experienced teacher, and a photographer whose work has been featured by National Geographic, among others. His fine art and commercial photography have taken him around the world, and he’d like to share what he’s learned with you. It’s a chance to travel, make friends, and learn to see in new ways.
Want to come? It’s June 5 – 15, 2018, and it’s surprisingly affordable. Learn more here, and take advantage of the limited time special discount until December 31!
While in Lishui, China, a couple years ago for a show and lecture, I met Guo Jing. She’s a photography curator, and she requested that I submit work to her some upcoming shows she was curating. She accepted my series Skeleton in the Closet, which was already translated into Chinese a couple years prior, for some shows elsewhere in China. The work was then accepted and shown at both the Beijing and Shanghai Photo Festivals, which took place at the China Art Museum in Shanghai from Feb.28 to Mar. 5, 2017. Guo Jing later told me, “It was later shown at Shanghai Tower after the closing date of the festival. Shanghai Tower is a landmark building in Shanghai, and its art space is one of best exhibition center in Shanghai. It is an honor for the photographer to have their works exhibited there as not all the exhibitions at the festival were continued to be shown there.”
These two lovely ladies just made their way to a private collection in New York City. Two of my favorite encaustic pieces from 2016, I’m very pleased to have them in a collection that often lends to museums and galleries.
I was happy to receive the following letter from Larissa LeClair, of the Indie Photobook Library (which collected a copy of Skeleton in the Closet):
It is an honor to announce that the Indie Photobook Library has been placed at the Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library at Yale University. The collection would not be what it is today without all of you self-publishers and independent presses. Collectively we have given this platform of expression a voice and shaped contemporary photobook publishing and subsequently history in our own way. Your role will now live on at Beinecke. Update your CV’s!
Thus the iPL is permanently closed to submissions. Yet, I will continue to advocate on behalf of self-publishers from around the world by directly consulting with libraries and museums on their acquisitions.
I look forward to hearing about your books in all stages of the process!
Congratulations and continue to shape your own history!
Founder, Indie Photobook Library