I am a self-taught photographer, living and working in the San Francisco Bay Area. I am interested in portraits, intimate stories told in images and words about people, places, history, life. A portrait stops time and gives birth to something new that holds both current and ancient histories. I am fascinated by the power of history, the activities of ghosts and spirits as they reside in our unconscious, our complex dances with the past and present. I am interested in what is seen and what is unseen, the tangible and the intangible, what is on the surface and what is underneath.
The creation of a portrait honors the power of relationship. A portrait is always co-created. The power of an image lies first in the relationship between the photographer and the person, place or object in front of the lens. When the portrait is viewed, if the viewer is engaged, touched and encouraged to create his or her own story about it, then a new relationship has been birthed.
Life has taught me lessons about resilience, grace, calm and beauty. My own story and my profession as a psychologist have left me equally well acquainted with grief, trauma, emotional storms and ugliness. Things are not always what they seem. Sometimes truths are hidden. Universal emotions, experiences, realities like grief and loss often cannot easily be put into words. The transient lives that we live always have light and dark in equal measure; everybody has something. My art is informed by it all.
My camera is the tool that allows me to create, to openly share my views of the world, tell stories that are important to me. Sometimes my goal is simply to capture, to reveal, to create beauty. But exeriences on both sides of the camera, using photography in healing from trauma, have shown me the importance of art in bringing topics of darkness into the light so they may be seen and understood.
Some of my work is "straight photography." If I feel my image speaks as I wish on its own terms, then the photographic portrait is the end result of my work. But sometimes the creative pull I feel leans towards more - the intangible, unsaid, unseen. At those times, the camera becomes my paintbrush, the tools of the digital darkroom, my pencils and ink, my etching instruments. Some of these images appear impressionistic, painterly, touched by the hand of a watercolorist. Other images look like an etching from an old book, a worn-looking treasure from the attic. This work lies at the intersection of photography and painting and, often, at the intersection of the past and the present.