Assignment~Day 1….A Journey of Discovery

Notre Dame, Paris

Notre Dame, Paris

“The artist is a receptacle for emotions that come from all over the place: from the sky, from the earth, from a scrap of paper, from a passing shape, from a spider’s web.” ~Pablo Picasso

Our first assignment for Kim Klassen’s online course called Beyond Layers is “Your Story”.   My story of my growth and involvement in the field of art and photography follows.

I grew up in a small town outside of Rochester, New York.  I had a happy childhood.  The seeds of a life-long love of architecture were planted there when I was young.  I loved to explore the fields behind our house,  climbing the trees with my friends,  and pretending that each branch was a different room.  Do you think I read Swiss Family Robinson?  About 5 times!  

Trips and tours to museums and famous homes fueled the fire.  I made “homes” from sticks, blocks, paper, popsicle sticks and dirt.  I sketched houses, designed rooms, and drew incessantly.  Our extended family owned a farm, and I became fascinated with abandoned buildings, a passion that continues to this day.  

My parents gave me a Brownie camera when I was around 10 or 11 years old.  That camera was with me all the time:  in the back fields, at Girl Scout camp, in the back yard and taking photos of my family.  I fell hard for photography right then and there!  

My father always pointed out the details in life  to me….in nature….on trips, around the house, and in everyday situations.  I found joy in capturing those details through the lens.  What a gift he gave me! 

And then the news came…..we were moving.  My dad’s job was transferred to Detroit.  I was just 14, a shy teenager.  I was unbearably sad and scared.  We were leaving our friends and our entire extended family.   It was very hard for me at my age. I had a wonderful circle of friends, and in my mind, I thought the world had collapsed.   My new high school was three times the size of the one I left, and I felt very small and insignificant.  Luckily I was in an art class.   I really enjoyed the teacher and all the exciting experiences she gave us.  I made new friends, and felt better about myself.  Soon life was better again; I was drawing.  I was sketching ways to redesign my bedroom, much to my parents’ dismay!

I continued art classes through high school and college…..and I still take them!  I consider myself a life-long learner.  I love photography, sketching, watercolor, calligraphy, pen & ink, and more.  My children caught the artistic bug.  My son is a wonderful photographer and videographer.  He’s also very skilled at sketching and drawing.  My daughter always has innovative ideas at work and at home,  using design and color.  She just started with photography and shows a great eye for composition.

My parents were my first mentors.  My father: photography.  My mother: art/pastels.   Together they instilled in me a love and appreciation for the beauty around us~and different ways of capturing it.

Join me as I continue my journey of discovery in photography.  

Thank you for reading this!