It was a cold day in January, but the light in Santa Fe was warm. I wandered the Plaza and the surrounding streets looking for subtle still life photographs, and found one that warmed my heart just as much as did the light itself.
My mother tells a story that goes something like this: When I was 15, I was engrossed in a typical pastime at my grandmother’s house–looking at pictures in old copies of National Geographic. I ran upstairs, holding out a picture of two fishermen in Newfoundland, saying, “This is what I want to do!” The picture was by Sam Abell, who years later in an unbelievable turn of fate became my friend, mentor, and classroom colleague. No words can ever express the honor and joy I’ve experienced through working with Sam.
Similarly, I used to look at the Santa Fe Photographic Workshops catalogue, awestruck by the photographers who had earned places there as instructors. How amazing, I thought, to take a class in Santa Fe from such people. Had you told me then that I would teach there instead, I’d have laughed in disbelief.
But no more.
The coming summer marks the first (and hopefully not last) course I will teach at the Workshops, The American West: Crafting Fine Digital Prints, from June 30-July 4. I’m eternally grateful to Reid Callanan, the SFPW director, for the opportunity, and I hope to see many of you in the digital lab this summer!
I’m off to Santa Fe and the Southwest in 10 days, and while the trip planning (and the holidays) have consumed a great deal of my time, it’s worth it. My students and I will be visiting and photographing some of the most breathtaking areas in the world, and this image is an artifact from the last time I took students to the artists’ magic place.