You may recognize the place… the old Round Barn at the Cornelius Pass Roadhouse. If you have spent any time on the grounds, you may also know that dogs are not allowed. This photo is a testament to the sweet humans in this trio… they were able to persuade management that Gustav is a one of a kind fellow. He was allowed to be on site for an hour and his behavior was impeccable.
New Mexico was a game changer in my life.
In 1994, I stashed most of my ego into a back pocket and signed up for a workshop in Santa Fe… it was a little rough for a very short time. My photographic education was completely homespun to this point. My parents were both serious photographers, if not full time professionals… they had vision and enthusiasm to spare but technique, in our small house, was limited. So I brought a bit of a chip to this class and discovered, to my delight, that I was in a crowd of my peers… we were all there to fine tune a thing we already knew.
Long story short, I found that a solid week of photography and photographers was a balm to my inner skin… no phones, no real housework, no outside life… no contest.
The textures and light that make up Santa Fe and it’s near neighbors were a healing time to me and they return to tease my mind on many a grey day here.
My teacher that amazing week was Kent Barker. Out of Dallas at the time, he was subtle and easy to talk to… a sweet sense of humor, his work was very strong.
He took us two hours north of Santa Fe to his friend’s art gallery in Tres Piedras… a hot pink adobe schoolhouse sitting all by itself on the Taos Mesa.
Imagine 18 photographers, 10 white dogs and a stormy afternoon sky… it was like a dream.
New Mexico pulled me back for many trips in the next seven years. I went until I couldn’t afford to go again but I am not done.
My camera will dance under those wide skies again some day.
The gentleman on the bench had the kindest eyes and a rather squashed hat on his old head… the pug was a little nervous. We were walking through Faneuil Hall in Boston and I didn’t do my usual sneaky candid. I decided not to treat him as a tourist sight… I went over and asked if I might take a picture of his dog. His smile and his yes were so gracious that I only took this one frame. I left out his fabulous face and hat because I had only asked about the dog.
Unusual for me.
Here’s to a kinder year ahead!