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Maureen Fitzmahan


I bought my first camera when I studied in Japan. In the ‘60s, if you wanted a Japanese camera, you’d go to Akihabara, a small district in Tokyo known for its manic streets. Cameras everywhere. Used and new. Nikon, Canon, Minolta, Yashica. It is there that I I bought my first Nikkormat and a 50 mm Nikon lens. I learned to develop my own black and white photos. I bought a massive old Omega enlarger and studied copies of Ansel Adams’ The Negative and The Print.

None of this answers the question of why I love working in art photography. I trained to be an attorney. I taught university and high school. Yet, none of my professions fit into my passions box. I love the black and white images that I find on the trains of Nagoya, or the village in Romania, or the parks and back alleys of New York City, or in the eyes of my daughters. I am sometimes surprised by the stories that my little black camera finds. I usually meet a bit of myself in those photos. As I work making art, I find a quiet peace. I feel at home.

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  • Pawling, N.Y., California, United States