Gifts of Discovery

I recently finished a course with two excellent instructors; Maggie Meiners and Chuck Gniech. The emphasis of the class was "professional practices". They covered what one needs to do to be more of a professional artist rather than a hobbyist; such as, what to put in a CV and BIO. What I felt was the greatest impact of the course, was their emphasis on the purpose and story behind one's art. 

I'm still discovering my purpose with all of this. I know getting back into art is something I need to do. I'm just not sure why. So our discussions in class helped move me forward in my mission of discovery. I kept thinking I need to do a series about my mother (see blog "Will I Turn Left? April 20, 2015). After all, as a professional artist, she had a great impact on my love of art. As I struggled with my "artist statement" for my portfolio trying to relate it to be about my mother, Chuck said, "Make this about YOU. Tell us how YOU feel." Wow! Now I really had to think, explore, and expose. I had to search inside and come up with a portfolio that was really about how I feel...

When I was a young girl, I spent a lot of time alone. I would purposely avoid plans with friends. I spent the days in our basement alone in my mother's studio working on various art projects. Time would fly by. The house was quiet. I craved the time to create, looking forward to it when I woke up. THAT was really the start of my journey, and I needed to capture that feeling in my photos.

Out of this class came my "Strength in Solitude" portfolio. I have discovered a piece of myself through this process. A good piece. A piece that is content with myself and who I am at 60, because of how I coped at the age of ten. This portfolio is really the beginning of my journey of discovery, and I thank Maggie and Chuck for the push in the right direction. 

I hope you enjoy the portfolio and the artist statement. (click here) Here's a sample of a few photos:

I am grateful for a wonderful year of growth and I look forward to many more "gifts of discovery" in the new year... and, of course, sharing them with you.

~ Jody


My next assignment: Finding passion!

As you saw from my last post, my assignment was to take black and white pictures in my house using the light and shadows to make interesting pictures. I started out excited, as I always do, then get antsy to try something else. My cat, Mandu, helped make the light more interesting for me. She loves to sit in a patch of sun in our bathroom in the morning.

I have a feeling in the class critique, I will not get "artistic points" for these. However, they do make me feel warm and fuzzy, and sometimes that has to count for something. Am I right?

I then took some other pictures with shadow, shapes, and light. We will see how these are received in a future class critique session. 

Meh. I have more, but I wasn't thrilled with most of them. I'll keep trying though. But when I went out on a snowy day, I liked some of these shots...

I'll bring them to class as well, and see which the instructor likes better.

I went to a networking event for artists and photographers. Everyone was so willing to help me learn and grow as a photographer. The climate was very collaborative (to use an over used word)... but it was very real and the help was sincere. Most everyone I met asked me what I am passionate about shooting. Other than my children and grandchildren, I am really not sure. I think my instructor is also looking for that passion in me. I know I will find it as I take this journey.

I know what it's not...

....It's not shooting inanimate objects in my house. 

~ Jody