About Me

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I'm a Guilford College graduate with a B.S. in Criminal Justice; I minored in Visual Arts Photography. My blog tracks the highs and lows of my experience in a Film Photography course during the Spring of 2013 and up to the present, as I delve into digital photography. I may even include other mediums of art such as acrylic paint, graphite drawings, etc. I'll talk about my experiences snapping photos or simply snapping from frustration as well as my successes and failures, tips and tricks that I've learned, and exploring the photography/art world through the lens of a Black woman.

12 February 2013

Artist Spotlight

Michael P. Smith (1937–2008)
"A New Orleans native and award-winning professional freelance photographer, spent a lifetime capturing the music, culture and folklife of New Orleans and Louisiana. He was well known for documenting New Orleans social club parades and jazz funerals, neighborhood Mardi Gras traditions, spiritual church ceremonies, and many of the city and state's renowned jazz, blues rhythm and blues, and gospel musicians. Smith photographed at every New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival from its inception in 1970 until his retirement in 2004, when he was honored with a major grandstand exhibition and photo kiosks placed around the fairgrounds ... In the years prior to his death in 2008, Smith was honored with numerous awards. He received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities in 2002 and was named Music Photographer of the Year by Offbeat magazine. In 2004, he received a Mayor's Arts Award from the Arts Council of New Orleans and a Clarence John Laughlin Lifetime Achievement Award from the New Orleans/Gulf South chapter of the American Society of Media Photographers (ASMP). In 2005, he received the Delgado Society Award (New Orleans Museum of Art), the first photographer to be so honored [x]."
I'm drawn to Smith's photography because he captures the liveliness and culture of New Orleans. Looking at his photographs of artists like Irma Thomas, Allen Toussaint, Sippie Wallce, Lee Dorsey, Willie Dixon, and more makes me want to listen to music. It makes me want to travel to New Orleans and see the jazz lifestyle with my own eyes. He does an amazing job of capturing these artist when they're feeling their music... their mouths open belting out wonderful tunes, playing the saxaphone, and so forth. The funerals he photographed are equally entertaining compared to the festivals, because in New Orleans they have parades and celebrations rather than mourning in a depressing manner. The funerals he photographed had the same amount of music as the festivals. Lastly, he photographed the "Spirit World" of New Orleans and baptisms. I just find his work to be intrinsically captivating.

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