"The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera." - Dorothea Lange

Monday, April 29, 2013


As I get closer to the opening of my show, things are really starting to come together. I'm so excited about the catalogue! It is will go to the printer this week, so I'll soon have one in hand.

Gail Lozoff (dear pal, business-woman extraordinaire, artist, cyclist, foodie, extremely good person) took on the task of designing both the invitation and the catalogue for me. We'd never worked together on a project before, and it was really fun to do! Our friendship survived, and I think it even became stronger. Gail is the ultimate professional at everything she does. She's also cool as a cucumber during times of stress, and trust me, we had some challenging moments during this process.

Here is what Gail created:

A 32 page staple-bound four color book that measures 8 1/2" x 8 1/2". There are 50 reproductions of both color and black/white images, with my writing running throughout. The introduction is written by Jane Aspinwall, Associate Curator of Photography at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. The front and back covers are vellum, transparent enough to reveal the text on the following page. Gail used my handwriting throughout the book, from the cover and title page to the spreads featuring each body of work. She selected a lovely palette of colors for these handwritten words. And she made sure, and then sure again, that everything looked just perfect.

The catalogue tells the story of my work really well. I couldn't be happier with it!

It will be available for a suggested donation of $10. Part of that money will help cover the printing expense; part of it will go to Change the Truth. The catalogues will be sitting on a table at my opening at the Bohemian Gallery in Overland Park, Kansas (and available throughout the duration of the show). I'd also be happy to mail them to any of you who can't make it to the show.

The title of my show "Can You See Me Now?" may seem somewhat enigmatic. I believe the meaning will be revealed (and the meaning is open to your own interpretation!) as you make your way through the catalogue.

I'll feel really honored if you get a copy.

Friday, April 26, 2013

a teaser

I'd like to keep some of my most recent work a secret until the show opens, but I can't resist sharing at least one brand new piece here on the blog. You may recall that I traveled to central Kansas recently to update two of twins portraits. I was really pleased with both, but especially this one of Derrick and Dustin (2005/2013).

Thursday, April 25, 2013

invitation to my show

Invitations were put in the mail this week! I couldn't be more excited about the artwork for this and the catalogue, both of which were created by my dear friend, Gail. Here is what it looks like, front and back.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Sunday, April 21, 2013

breaking news: ctt team 7 leaders announced!!

I am thrilled to share this great news: Jeff Mildner and Jennifer Smith will be the leaders of Change the Truth's Team 7 trip to Uganda this December!

This will be the couple's third trip to St. Mary Kevin Orphanage. 

When they're not traveling to SMK and other exotic places, here's what they do:

Jeff works for a business solutions company in Lenexa, Kansas. He is a former social studies teacher, coach, and school district IT director. Jennifer is in her 18th year of teaching (and was recently named Blue Valley School District "Teacher of the Year"). She currently teaches 8th graders American history. Jenn and Jeff are avid sports fans cheering on the Kansas City Royals and the Pittsburgh Steelers. Jeff has completed several marathons (including a 100K - yes you read that right...100!) just yesterday. Jennifer enjoys reading and cooking. They will celebrate their 17th wedding anniversary in December.

Not only have these two humanitarians traveled to SMK twice already, they are actively involved in practically everything CTT does. They are the volunteers behind the successful silent auctions we've had at our past two annual fundraisers. They have spoken about CTT at their church, they have rounded up laptops galore for the SMK computer lab and they even sponsor one of our secondary school students. These two are committed to the children at the orphanage in very big ways. CTT is lucky to call Jenn and Jeff "friends."

I have no doubt they will make outstanding trip leaders. Between Jenn's expert organizational skills and Jeff's laid back demeanor, they will bring excitement, energy, fun, structure and compassion to the table and will share it with everyone on the team and everyone at St. Mary Kevin's.

So, if you've been thinking about joining Team 7, there are now two more excellent reasons to do so. Let me know if you'd like additional information. The team is now forming - you won't want to miss this incredible opportunity.

I asked Jenn and Jeff to write a quick introduction to share here. If you followed Team 4's journey, you already know a few things about these two wonderful people.

"We first learned about Change The Truth when Gloria visited our church in Olathe. Having traveled to South Africa and Lesotho, we were interested in an organization that was committed to building relationships and providing educational support for children.  As members of Team 4 in 2010, we led computer classes and education around HIV-AIDS, drugs and alcohol, and healthy relationships. More importantly, we began building relationships with the children. We returned to Saint Mary Kevin in July 2012 and participated in the school day observing classes, organizing the library, and even teaching a few lessons. We traveled to several secondary schools to see CTT sponsored students and tour their dormitories, classrooms and college campuses.

The children of Saint Mary Kevin have imprinted our hearts as the red soil of Uganda marks our shoes and clothes. We are honored to lead Team 7 and can’t wait to see our friends in Kajjansi again. Tubagala nyo! (We love you!)"

Friday, April 19, 2013

a mom's musings

Max and friends in Boston

As a mom, I've had my share of worries about - and for - my kids over these last 32 years. The early worries were things I felt I could do something about. "Take my hand when we walk across the street, please." "Don't talk to strangers." "Don't climb that high!!"

As they got older, I felt less in control, but I felt I still had some. They drove. They were passengers in cars being driven by other teenagers. They stayed out late. They were exposed to drugs and alcohol and lots of questionable behaviors. My pleas made me feel better, but my kids were busy doing their adolescent job of breaking out and establishing their own identities. "You have a curfew for a reason." "Just call me if you can't drive home; I won't ask any questions." "Don't even think about that idea for spring break!"

Neither of my children live in Kansas City now. Like any other mom would, though, I continue to worry about - and for - them. Sometimes, not often, I express my concerns and fears, but I feel both of them have grown up to be good decision-makers. So the "loss of control" over them feels OK.

Today I sit at home worrying about my son in a way I have never worried about him before. He lives in Boston.

At this moment I have absolutely no control. None. I feel fairly useless as Max's mom today.

I know he'll be fine. But, trust me, my nerves are frayed. How I wish I could simply say: "That boy in the white cap is not nice. Just don't pay any attention to him, and he'll leave you alone and go away."

Wednesday, April 17, 2013


I spent some time in Hope, Kansas this past Sunday. 

Hope. It just seems like something we're all holding onto now.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013


This is Martin, age 8. He died in the Boston bombing yesterday. He was at the finish line with his family, waiting for his dad to cross. His mother and little sister were seriously injured. 

His message resonates powerfully today. 

Nicholas Kristof picked this up and shared it on Facebook, and now I am sharing it with you.

Monday, April 15, 2013

what can there possibly be in central kansas?

That was the question posed by my brother when I told him where I'd been road tripping this past weekend. He lives in California. Day trips and weekend trips for him are rather incredible, I suppose, given his proximity to profoundly beautiful landscapes and the ocean. But I don't think central Kansas is too shabby! And one would be hard pressed to meet nicer people along the way.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

road trip!

"No place is boring, if you've had a good night's sleep and have a pocket full of unexposed film."

This quote by photographer Robert Adams is running through my mind this morning as I pack for a quick road trip to central Kansas. I have a date this afternoon with Derrick and Dustin and early this evening with Carrie and Angie (in Smolan and Lindsborg respectively). I haven't seen them since I photographed them for my twins project back in 2005. We'll do an update of those pictures for the "Twins Revisited" project I'm working on now.

Carrie and Angie

Derrick and Dustin

I love hittin' the road. Who knows what I'll find along the way today and tomorrow? I may not have any unexposed film in my pocket, but I do have lots of CF cards and extra charged batteries!

Friday, April 12, 2013

build a good name

Last year I read and loved Patti Smith's memoir Just Kids, so when I saw this video posted up on my friend Susan's facebook page, I was excited to watch it.

It's six minutes long, but totally worth watching. Patti nails it.

had got to give a little talk/presentation last night to a group of LA collectors/photo enthusiasts who are in town for the weekend. I was really nervous about it. But somehow, after listening to Patti rock on with her gems of solid advice and inspiration, I felt calm and strong.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

got good music?

When Eddie and I got married, the things we merged that became our largest asset (we definitely had more of them than anything else) were our our album collections. In fact, one of the reasons we knew right away that we liked each other was that we shared affection for JT, Joni, Bonnie, Eric Clapton, Jethro Tull, Poco, John Prine, Loggins and Messina, Buffalo Springfield, Dylan, the Beatles, CNS&Y and Jackson Browne. In the early 70's, what else mattered but the music?

I used to buy albums (and before those - 45's) at a place called Barney Miller's. Every Saturday I would take the bus downtown, babysitting money tucked inside my wallet, and hang out among the record bins. At Barney Miller's, there was a listening both - kind of like a phone booth. Once I'd selected the albums I wanted to hear, I could go in there and give them each a listen. Grab a bunch of records, drop the needle on the vinyl and presto! you've got the perfect way to spend a Saturday afternoon. 

Once I got to Kansas City, I hung out among the bins at Penny Lane. They didn't have a listening booth, but they did have Leroy. He was a sweet, hulking hippie with long thinning hair and oversized wire rims. He always wore overalls. Leroy knew my taste in music and always pointed me toward the right albums to take home.

Then came CDs, which I reluctantly started buying. Leroy would open up the ones he thought I should hear and play them on the store's sound system. My own giant listening booth.

Yesterday I decided I needed to add some new tunes to my music library, which is all neatly categorized and stored on my computer. (I've come a long way, baby.) At any rate, my shopping spree for records now consists of going to iTunes and scrolling through hundreds of releases. It's a daunting task. I can listen to snippets of songs to decide if I want to buy or not. There's a lot of clicking involved. I should have been framing photographs last night, but I went album shopping instead.

I should have been framing photographs this morning, but I went album shopping again - clicking my way through records by artists I like, then artists that iTunes thinks I might like since I liked the first artist, then artists who were favored by other consumers who also liked that first artist. It's a long trail down which to trek, and I could have spent all day with my hiking boots on. 

The funny thing is, I came up empty handed. Audio overload, I guess.

The framing awaits, and so does a good record from my tried and true music library - something I will play on my way groovy Sonos system. 

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

ephrem solomon tenegn

I'm up to my eyeballs in names and addresses as I assemble my mailing list for the show, but I did take a break recently to feast them on this lovely work. These are by Ephrem Solomon, one of Ethiopia's most talented young artists (born 1985).

Tuesday, April 09, 2013


I'm a huge fan of college basketball, though these days I usually don't get into it full-time until March Madness rolls around. Now that it's over, I have to admit I'm going to miss it a lot. Even the commercials. (Charles Barkley and Alec Baldwin have been hilarious.)

Last night's game between Michigan and Louisville was one of the best basketball games I've ever watched. I went into it rooting for Louisville (even though I'm a  UK Wildcat girl from birth) but found myself early on cheering for Michigan freshman Spike Albrecht. This kid, who is only 5'11" was sinking 3-pointers like there was no tomorrow. He averages like 1 or 2 points a game, but he scored 17 points in a sudden, ferocious burst during the first half (and kept Michigan in the game). Then I got into cheering for L-ville because Luke Hancock (the bearded wonder) finally got his game on, and of course, the camera kept reminding us about sweet (and severely injured) Kevin Ware, smiling broadly from the sidelines after handsome Hancock sunk 3 or 4 long ones in a row to revive his team just before the end of the first half.

If UK or KU is not in the game, I can easily be swayed - my emotions are open to anything during a good college basketball game. 

And the Final Four playoff game night is never complete (and here my emotions overflow) until "One Shining Moment." There's nothing comparable to it in any other sport. Sniff, sniff.

The song was written on a napkin in a bar in 1979 by David Barrett. Here's the backstory:

Barrett, a singer/songwriter from Michigan, wrote the song after seeing Larry Bird star for Indiana State in the 1979 NCAA tournament. In 1986, he passed the song along to high school friend Armen Keteyian, an investigative journalist for CBS Sports and, at that time, Sports Illustrated, who in turn passed it to CBS Sports Creative Director Doug Towey. However, Towey originally planned to debut the song not after a basketball game, but after a football game, Super Bowl XXI. It was to have been the postgame montage from that contest, but CBS ran past the expected airtime and had a primetime show to debut in the next time slot, so the montage was canceled. CBS then asked Barrett for use of the song after the 1987 NCAA championship game, in which Indiana beat Syracuse. Towey decided to use "One Shining Moment" to close CBS' coverage of the Tournament. The positive public response led to it becoming an annual feature. It has been used to end CBS' coverage ever since.

The song has endured. Now sung by Luther Vandross, the first one that aired in 1987 was performed by the songwriter himself. For a walk down memory lane... (at 3:13, is that Pitino??)

Watching "One Shining Moment" always points out what good, honest competition should be about: dreams, hard work, determination, fun and camaraderie. With all the garbage we've seen in college sports these past few years, it's nice to think that these guys (and gals - Louisville's women play tonight for the championship!) really dig deep and play their hearts out during this tourney just because, well, they can.

Saturday, April 06, 2013

it takes a village

No, this isn't a post about the children at the orphanage. It's about my upcoming "mid-career retrospective" which is scheduled to open on May 10th at the Bohemian Gallery in Overland Park, Kansas.

I've been working like mad to get everything in order for the show, and I've been really lucky to have had lots of help thus far.

The whole process started with the selection of work (many years are covered in this show). I received a great assist from the incredibly knowledgeable and talented Jane Aspinwall, associate curator of photography at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. Jane not only helped choose the pieces but has also figured out where everything will go when we install the show. Plus she kindly wrote the introduction to the catalogue.

Speaking of the catalogue - that has been designed by my good friend Gail Lozoff. I'm so excited for everyone to see it (she hit a home run with this piece!). It's 8" x 8" with 32 full color pages and a vellum cover. The proofs have been gone over with a fine tooth comb by the ever capable Tory, Lynne, Jennifer, Sam and Eddie. It should go to the printer this week. The invitations, also designed by Gail have already been printed and now need addressing.

(There's a lot to do to make this happen!)

My Epson 4900 printer has been working overtime these past few weeks. I've just recently finished making everything. For over sized pieces I have had the capable and friendly assistance of John Hans. He always finds a way to be patient with me and to get good results even when I give him questionable material with which to work.

Then there's the framing. I do most of that myself. Rick Heaviland has done a wonderful job of cutting the mats, glass and moulding - preparing all the materials so I can get everything assembled.

There is still much to do, but I feel like I'm entering the homestretch at this point. Soon enough I will have to figure out how to transport 80 some-odd pieces (!) to the gallery, and then it will be time to work with the gallery staff to get the show installed. The opening will be Friday night, May 10th from 6:00 - 9:00 p.m. The exhibition will continue through June 14th.

If you live out of town and are interested in receiving a catalogue, just let me know. If you are in the Kansas City area and would like to bring a group to see the show, I'd be happy to talk with you about personally guiding the group through it. Just contact me so we can set up a date and time.

Finally, if you are not on my mailing list and you'd like to receive an invitation, please contact me and share both your email and snail mail information.

Thanks to everyone who is helping make this come together! It's a dream come true for me. The village will be complete when folks show up at the gallery to take a look at the work. Thank you in advance for that.

Thursday, April 04, 2013

early works

Opening Friday night at the Newspace Center for Photography in Portland is an exhibition called "Early Works," a show curated by Laura Moya and Laura Valenti Jelen. It features work taken by about 30 photographers - photographers who are grown now but who made pictures when we were young.

I am happy to be included in the exhibit. The picture the curators chose was taken when I was about 5 or 6. My family had recently moved into a new house on a street that was just being developed. Ours was one of the first houses that was built, so we had a bunch of empty lots to explore. I had to leave behind my boyfriend, Harry B., who lived next door, and my best friend Mary Louise (Weezy) who lived across the street. They came over to my new house to play a few times, but then our friendships kind of petered out. In this picture, they are standing in the empty lot next door to my family's new house. They really got dressed up to come visit me. They were making funny faces for the camera. I don't remember if I asked them to do that or not. Since we were 5 or 6, that's probably just what we thought was good for a picture. I don't know whose shadow that is down in the right hand corner. I love how the hat mimics the hat that Harry B. was wearing. I'd like to think I knowingly included that shadow in the corner of the frame. I doubt it. But here's to happy accidents. They still work for me today.

I hadn't seen Weezy since high school, but I did see her this past fall at our 40th high school reunion She's a teacher and as nice as they come.

I haven't seen Harry B. since we were very, very young. I googled him today. He's a sound and picture editor in LA, who's won some rather prestigious awards and worked on some well known films and TV shows. I found this picture of him. It's shocking to see the face of someone you haven't seen in over 50 years. I used to sneak kisses onto those cheeks.

Wednesday, April 03, 2013


My daughter is, among many other things (at present a busy mama to two children in diapers!), a fine photographer. I asked her if it'd be OK to showcase a few of the pics she's been sharing on Instagram lately, and she said "yes." They are seemingly simple, loving shots of the daily goings on of her family, but they go beyond that in so many ways. I don't think it's my mom bias; my daughter has a very "good eye."


Tuesday, April 02, 2013


If Diane Arbus was still alive, she would have just celebrated her 90th birthday. Kind of amazing.

Here is Arbus in the late 60's, a couple years before she died.