When my father died, I didn’t know what to do. He was young, it was sudden, and the loss was overwhelming. All the moments I thought I would have time for were gone. In the face of that, what I wanted to do was turn to my camera. In a moment of utter confusion, photography was something I could understand. Out of respect for my family’s grief and a general sense that what I really wanted was to avoid my own, I chose to turn to my mother instead and face the experience directly.
As time went on I found myself turning my lens toward my family and my home more and more frequently. Photography has long had an association with the preserving of memories. For me it is also a way to relate to my family and understand how we are connected to each other.
I have always been interested in the idea of documentary photography as fine art. I find inspiration in the work of artists such as Sally Mann, Todd Deutsch, Chris Verene, Doug Dubois and Deanna Dikeman, who photograph their families. Though they make images of specific people and relationships that are removed from my own they still evoke universal feelings of memory and home.
When I look at the world through my camera I see it differently. The flick of a shutter seizes a fleeting moment and transforms it into a still image that can be shared and returned to. I begin to see the depth of a gesture or expression that I might otherwise have overlooked. As I continue to photograph my family I begin to see how all these moments relate and add up to a familial history and identity. Making these images I develop a better understanding of the themes of loss, family, home and memory in the wider context of the universal human condition.