I started out taking photographs as a hobby four years ago with my point and shoot and it has progressively evolved into something so important in my life. I had no focus at first, but my love of history took a hold of my photography and I quickly found what spoke to me, the vanishing visual of the old South. To me the abandoned homes, the weathered barns, the rusty signs, and the quiet landscape echoes of a simpler world…a world that isn’t full of the modern-day rush. I found myself trying to capture these scenes before they disappeared, which they are doing at an alarming rate. The South, more than any other region of the country, is steeped in tradition. The South is haunted by its history, and this creates a land of spiritualism and myth. There is a lingering pain here, this undercurrent of emotion is what I try to capture.
When I stand before an abandoned home, I marvel at the honest simplicity and skill that went into the construction. In this world of prefabricated life, there is a beauty in the hand hewed clapboards of a tenant house or a weathered barn. Most folks don’t even notice these long empty places along the country roads, they are anonymous now in their silence. There is a beauty in that as well, I feel like I see things that others do not, that they are waiting on me in a way. I see the personality they have, I feel the residual life they contain. I wonder what transpired within; was it romance, tragedy, comedy?
I don’t know how the world would classify my work, it has a strong documentary sense to it, but I don’t consider myself a true documentary photographer. I find that I try to capture a more emotional representation of a place. I feel that I’m taking a portrait of the subject rather than a straight forward shot. I guess I want people to look at one of my photographs and not just see say, a hearth, but to see the family that once sat around it, to imagine the warmth it provided, to hear the conversations, the laughter, the music of life.
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- Athens, Georgia , USA