Monday, May 5, 2014

National Geographic

It's still hard for me to believe that my image and National Geographic are next to each other in this screenshot photo.  Last December, I went to my first portfolio review in New Orleans, LA.  I was nervous about showing my personal series to top names in the gallery, museum and art world. What would they say? How would they react to my process? It's always a bit daunting to show your personal work to the world but as I am learning, it's the most rewarding thing you can do.  Sure, people might not like it and that is why it's "art."  It's subjective.

I decided to participate in the reviews since my work was selected to be shown at the Ogden Museum of Art in New Orleans in conjunction with PhotoNOLA.  I felt that would be a nice opening line when presenting my series to reviewers.  I am a shy person so this is not the most comfortable setting for me.  I'm sure it's not for most...especially for the first time.

The first review was exciting since it really set the tone.  I walked up, introduced myself and said it was my first review ever.  It didn't seem to phase him and he was positive about everything, giving me both positive statements and some constructive criticism.  This is why I am doing what I decided to do.  I wanted honest feedback.

When I met Kurt (writer of the National Geographic article), I had a day of reviews under my belt and I have to say that I was my most relaxed self with Kurt.  We have 20 minutes to present with each person and when I met Kurt, we talked about our dogs for about the first ten minutes. Then it was, "oh yeah... here's my work..." I could have been so relaxed because I felt that nothing would come out of the meeting.  I mean, he was representing National Geographic.  I didn't think my work fell into the realm of the holy grail of travel images which is Nat Geo. So, when he contacted me a few months later to feature it on their photo blog, "Proof", I was completely shocked and so very honored.

Being vulnerable and putting my work and life out there to be seen and judged has brought me more gifts then I could have ever imagined.  Thank you.

To read the article, click HERE

Here's a photograph of me with the images displayed at the Ogden Museum of Art in New Orleans (photo courtesy of Christa Blackwood):


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