Throughout my childhood, I was more of an observer than a participant in many ways, noticing each gesture and each detail of life. Many of these images have been burned into my memory, much like that of a photograph… but only I am able to see them. I remember looking around at the world when I was child as people moved through life not noticing the beautiful dandelions that they had just stepped on, or the expression on their faces… their laughter, anger, boredom. It was as if I could feel what they were feeling just by truly looking.
These images were all captured in my mind, however, one instance changed how I would see the world forever. I can still see that poor man seated on a New York street when I was about 8 years old. His clothing was worn and tattered and as he reached his hand out to those who passed him by, I noticed that his sleeve was torn. His face was dirty and his wildly unkempt hair hung down partially covering his left eye. When I looked into those eyes of his, there was a sadness in them that consumed me. I looked around and watched people walk by and wondered why no one was looking at him… Why wasn’t anyone helping him? As I passed with my parents, I slowed to a stop, looked directly at him and said hello to him. Although consumed with sadness, I smiled gently at him in hopes to take away his pain. For an instant, there was a glimmer of the man he used to be as his face relaxed and smiled back at me.
I have been haunted by this man my whole life. While taking some photography classes in High School, I remembered this man. If only I could have captured that image of his smile and of the man that he used to be so that it could last forever. I believe this was the unconscious beginning to my photographic desire to capture a moment in time on film. From that moment on, I did just that, becoming the ‘go to girl’ for events, natural portraits, etc. I never posed my subjects, preferring to capture their beauty when they were not paying attention, avoiding the barrier that so many of us put up when someone shoves a camera our face. A photo taken at the right moment has the ability to capture the very essence of the person, revealing their true self.
I continued taking photos of this nature, representing the reality that existed in the world around me until the year 2001, when my world was shaken to its core. I was forced to move from all I knew and loved. With a French-English language barrier, I was no longer able to express myself and the tremendous emotions I was feeling. It was then that my work took an unintentional inward turn, and became one of self-expression, filled with color.
Someone happened upon these photos at my home and immediately asked me to enter my work into a selection process for a one man show in Monaco. At first, I refused… they were simple flower photographs, yet somehow these photos were part of me and showing them in some way made me feel as if I were naked, as if everyone would know more about me than I wanted them to know. I’m probably the first person who needed to be convinced to show my work in an Art Exposition, but I eventually agreed. The show featured all 15 photos from my Evocative Series.
It was overwhelming to see people react to my work at the Art Opening. Many people were indeed able to see inside of me, but somehow I no longer feared that. Over time, my Photographic Artwork took on a more and more abstract nature. The actual object I was photographing became irrelevant… the moment I was capturing was one of emotion and of a state of mind. Today, my artwork can have many interpretations, each very different from one person to the next. My photos are still created on the basis of capturing a moment in time inside of me, but it is that of the onlookers past and present experiences that influence what they see before them.
My first expositions, were simply to expose my photographs. In the beginning had no desire to sell them, but when I saw the pleasure it gave others I decided to do so in my own way. Just because we have the ability of reproducing images, it doesn’t mean we should. Each photograph is taken at a specific moment in time to express a particular feeling or emotion that is dear and precious. In life no two moments in time are the same, and I’ve applied this concept to my film photography. Each of my film photographic art images are sold on a one-of-a-kind basis with a certificate of authenticity stating such, with the exception of the Evocative Series. It will be sold as a limited edition and will include a certificate of authenticity.
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