I've just returned home from a marvelous and deep weekend spent with my mother and sister. They allowed me to photograph them for my project. Photographing people whom I have an intimate connection with, is becoming one the most profound artistic experiences I've ever embarked upon.
I continue to be thrilled beyond belief by what my eyes can see through a macro lens...I have been pulled into another world. And today, I was able to run two miles without pain for the first time in 6 months! My runners knee seems to have healed. I am so grateful. I plan to take it easy though. I'm going to come back to running slowly, while still biking almost daily. Temperance. #gratitude
Bicycled 10 miles this morning. I wanted to go further, but I have projects due for my sound design class. Currently, I am working on a multimedia artwork that incorporates my photography with personal narrative. I've gestated this work for a long time. I've been taking photographs as part of my creative process for years. However, this is the first time that I'm using photography as a primary medium for self expression. I'm excited for where this process is taking me.
What an amazing day. I got to view, learn and photograph some of the most majestic birds of prey who reside in New York State. Unfortunately, so much of their habitat is being destroyed by us.
Spirit work, as I practice seeing...This photograph captured with my vintage Nikon lens takes my breath away...In that moment, I was looking toward the light...
Walked four miles today around the lake. I took my camera along with me. I wanted to try out my vintage Nikon Nikkor Zoom AI-S 35-135mm f/3.5-4.5. I'm in love with the artful expression of light through this lens.
Vintage lens attached to an old camera body, opens a whole new world and way of seeing. I'm in love with my old Nikon lens.
I've been experimenting with lenses. I'm in love with this vintage Nikon AI-S 35-135mm f/3.5-4.5. It's circa 80s and is manual focus on my old Nikon D40X. The bokeh is outrageous!
Yesterday, I biked down a steep hill at 30mph, for the first time...I felt a sick kind of exhilaration afterward...I don't think I'm going to do that again...
In the meantime, I'm also having fun with my new Nikon 85mm f/1.8G lens. It's mounted on my old Nikon D40X, which I bought new when it first came out in 2007. I've graduated to investing in better glass for my camera. So, I'm working on building my palette of lenses before I move into a new camera. I've been researching Nikon's current options for dslr cameras...I feel myself settling in on the D750.
©Shelita Birchett Benash
Fall sunflowers are my muse. The heat has tinged the leaves of many...
All of my technology crashed over the summer. My 2011 iMac crashed at the beginning of July; then my iPad, then my iPhone... Will write more about that experience later.
For now, I feel the need to share my photography process. I've been taking digital photography courses at SUNY Dutchess. Right now, I'm taking a photojournalism course with Professor Lowell Handler. I'm learning so much, as I am delving deeper into incorporating digital storytelling into my artworks. Life-long-learning is where it's at...
The process of wrapping my offering has me meditating on the beauty, meaning and myth of dragonflies. I've come by bucket full of thousands of brass dragonflies in the junk. This offering is becoming a swarming nest of dragonflies.
My Offering series centers on aspects of death, grief, mourning, rebirth, transformation and regeneration. The day Richard called to tell me that a bucket of brass dragonflies had been dropped at the junkyard, I knew I wanted to use them in my artwork. Still, I sat with them for a while, as they spoke to me.
I'm in the midst of creating new work. As part of my creative process, I am reflecting on older works. This was part of my Spreading Centers series artist statement.
Time outdoors is essential to my creative process. In nature, I breathe reflection. I am centered. I am focused. I know that I am blessed. I am grateful. And the new work taking shape inside my studio has me singing songs of praise.
I've been trekking miles through the open snow. The effort makes for immediacy and focus. The field snow is ice crusted and deep. My 30" snow shoes do well in keeping me on top of the snow, still they tend to get stuck in the pull through the ice. As I'm trekking, I'm already thinking of how I will need another expedition type of snowshoe for this kind of adventure. Nonetheless, I am grateful and exhilarated by how well I am making my way across the open field.
In nature, I am rejuvenated and hopeful. This exercise feeds my work.
Feeling unbelievably blessed for the love of family and friends. Happy Valentine's Day!
Snow days are an excellent opportunity to recalibrate and center oneself. Gratitude.