World Photo Day

August 19 is World Photo day.  I went looking to see what it was all about. You can Check it out here. Worldphotoday.com

Its actually an event where photographers around the world post one image from this day in a gallery.  Very cool. Some of us remember the series of books called “a day in the life” Same idea before internet. (yup I’m that old).  Facebook this morning gave me a notice it was world photo day and had a little write up about how photographs can change the world.  I have been doing a lot of growing in the past few months, the realization of just how much photography has changed my personal world is profound.  I know that’s not the purpose of the day but, Hey, that’s where my brain took me.  So I wanted to share just a few moments from my photographic past.

This first image was made, maybe 1980 or so.  This is Ginger and Taffy, our dogs I shot it, developed the film and printed the print in my bedroom. Yes I had a darkroom in my bedroom! Ah the smell of Fixer in the morning. When I pulled this pic out of the album to photograph I had to laugh at what I had written on the back.  I think I used this image to join New York institute of Photography distance learning program.  Cassette taped lessons and books.  Correspondence by mail. Wow!

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Life then happened, I briefly went to UNB and took science, ya, that didn’t work. Then to Holland College to take photography, get married, move to Ont. Shoot a whole lot of Weddings with film, not just film, but medium format film. Moved to BC (Ontario was just to big after the Maritimes) and not happy with my photo work. Worked with friends Christine and Jerry at their portrait studio (learned so much!). Yes photography has always been in my life.  After the studio I worked at North Island Custom images. Oh the times we had. Custom printer and fixer of that damn Kreonite machine, arg. This next image is the next huge phase of my photography. I met Sculptor Joel Prevost, he wanted images to sculpt from.  My first shoot for him was horrible. My images were so freakn bad. So I started studying lighting. Mostly Rembrandt time period of paintings and practiced, lots. It was a turning point for me. Joel and I have 2 joint shows, his sculpted  white body busts and my B&W images. My first show.

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I was still at the lab then and with the encouragement of amazing friends I made the decision to move to Vancouver.  I moved into The ARC at Powell and Commercial drive.  There my art education truly began.  I did some amazing projects each one changing me forever. One in particular though was truly showed me the power of photography.  I met a lady who contacted me to do some nudes (was my specialty at that time ) It was going to be a fun shoot, but I didn’t here from her for a few months.  When she called she said, I want to do nudes still but since we talked I have no right tit. Yes, exactly what she said.  She had breast cancer and wanted images. The shoot we did will remain in my heart for the rest of my life.  We laughed, we cried. She didn’t feel strong but she was determined.  I went straight to the dark room and developed the film. I got goose bumps when I looked at the dripping we negs. The feelings that overcame me when I watched the first print appear before my eyes in the developing tray, I wept. When she came to see the images, I had printed a few of them but one in particular I made an 11×14 of.  She was sobbing when she saw them.  She said “my god, I look so strong, I don’t see that in me” I said “its what I see”

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This isn’t really a good reproduction of the image but wow.  It was included in a book of cancer survivors. Kim and I became amazing close friends and we did many shoots after, did a couple of PSA’s for breast cancer and had many many times of laughter. Kim passed away a few years ago and  I have this image on my wall so I will never forget.

 

The power of Photography. My life long passion.

 

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