Genesis of an Original

Kathleen Messmer Photography Blog Image

I never wanted to be pigeon-holed or categorized as any particular kind of photographer. That said, I never really considered myself an artist until a few years ago in spite of the fact that I’ve been a photographer since way back when.  I never knew that being an artist involved emotions (gasp!), storytelling or anything else in that realm.

Now, however, I find myself wanting to talk about my art with emotionEmotion, you say?  What does that mean?  Well, I asked myself the same thing and what it boils down to is this…does looking at your art make you feel anything - good, bad or indifferent?  Does it tell a story?  If it does, then guess what…you’re an artist and you have work you can talk about with passion.  Even if that was never your intention.

I always thought that I just liked going out and shooting anything and everything and I still do.  The kicker is that even when that’s your mindset, you end up telling a story or creating a feeling or emotion, like it or not.

You’re probably thinking right about now that I’m really delusional, but I’m here to tell you that when I started photographing things, I kept seeing stuff that I wouldn’t have otherwise even thought about.  Yes, I thought about the shapes, lines, curves, shadows and light, but that wasn’t the only thing.   Case in point…

The image at the beginning of this blog is called To A Point.  When I shot it, I wasn’t much thinking about anything other than I really love Calla Lilies.  What I got back was an image that evoked in me something from my childhood that was really fun…playing on the slide.

If you look at the image the way I did, it reminds me of the curved slide at the playground when I was a kid.  I’d get up to the top and slide down really fast only to be ejected at the bottom…onto my bottom.  I couldn’t get enough.  So imagine my delight when, in my mind, that’s what this image brought to mind when I opened it in Photoshop.  But even more surprising was when I printed it, it evoked an even stronger version of everything I talked about earlier though in a dreamier, softer way.

When it was exhibited in Agora Gallery in New York, it was really fun to talk about it to gallery goers and see that they could see exactly what I saw.

I don’t know who will end up with this image hanging on their wall, but I do know that it will bring more than just the image they’re looking at.  It will bring joy, feelings perhaps of their own childhood or maybe just a love for Calla Lilies.  Who knows?  In the meantime, what do you see?

Until next time…

To A Point
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