is when I cease to see the photograph that I know I have come close to what
I truly want to say.
What is important right now is not who I am or where Ive come from,
but more so in the nature of what you see when you look into this book. Take
any page and you will instinctively be drawn to those images that already
have a part of you in them. Look into these, lend yourself to the process
of seeing and you will notice movement, moment and place, the illusion of
surface. Anything you will ever see contains that surface. At times it scares
us, prompting us to a quick and easy judgment. Other times it entertains and
sedates our assumptions upon the meaning of objects. You have felt this and
have maybe suffered it as well. Herein lies the importance of venturing beyond
the surface of things, beyond what defines art and artist by culture or trend.
Here is where you choose to go further than most when looking at what others
define as art. What is seldom taught is the fact that you are necessary to
complete the gesture of what is made. Your mind, your thoughts and feelings
are essential for this. Without your intellect and reason, without your experiences,
without you, this book is useless. It is not elementary to think so. It is
crucial to understand that you must add a part of yourself to all that you
see for learning to take place. Learning, not in what you see, but in how
you see it. Whatever you approach, whatever mysteries there are, all of them
will need you as a vital pat of their unfolding. So I ask you to be active
with your thoughts, challenge your world, refine your seeing as this is a
gift you can only give yourself.
is why I photograph, why I teach. I wish to test the depths of meaning, to
understand the illusion of surface and learn from its core. Here memory teaches
me, gives clues when reality cannot and allows my imagery to exist as unfinished
sentences, reflective instances of prayer, a poem left for you to complete.
They are not only intended to be seen but read as well. My learnings are not
meant to be taught through the image, only their evidence observed through
what your eyes may find in discovering them. So test the surface of what you
see. Ask yourself if your eyes are still pliable, if they can still hold your
uniqueness in them. For you see, we are like photographs. We become tarnished
by us and a certain condition is created. For all those who have handled us,
a mark was left in their place, abrasions often covered but seldom cleared.
Sometimes we lose sight of who we are when are attention is focused on the
assumed imperfections. Yet, this again is but the surface of things, a surface
capable of reflecting only what the viewer thinks they see. You are much more
I believe that there is more to seeing. That your eyes should learn to breathe,
taste and listen. That they should be courageous to go further than what they
have been taught. Why? Because it is imperative for you to name your world,
to not separate yourself from existence. Know that it takes time to grow into
your eyes and that the world so desperately needs you to define it. It needs
minds capable of focused thought and compassion. It needs those who can see
below the surface of things and who can reflect on their meanings. Like you,
meaning has its own unique velocity and movement. Look for it, chart its terrain
within you and believe, regardless of experience, regardless of culture, your
right to see.