In 2014, I was a newly separated single mother. I had two children and was attempting to rede-fine myself in various aspects of my life. As a mother, a woman, an artist.
Painting —which was my main outlet of creativity from the late 90s until I became a mother in 2007– was put on the back burner. Photography, which had always been an artistic interest of mine, took the forefront of my creative expression. As a photographer, I seldom take portraits of people. I specialize in high contrast, architecture, geometry, landscapes. But one night, in 2014, while alone, I decided to put myself on the other side of my lens. Putting myself on both sides of the camera al-lowed me to express myself with total freedom. Slowly, I entered a state of performative expression that previously laid dormant in me.
I was both stunned and scared of what came out of that evening. I experienced total artistic free-dom away from any judging eyes. However, I quickly realized that the self-imposed de-mands of my professional image as a teacher would not permit me to share this photo in a pub-lic forum. So I cast it aside, and once again hid a part of me that was screaming to be let out, to be freed and to be seen.
Now in my fiftieth year on Earth, entering a new phase in my life, I dare stop hiding.
I dare see and show myself in my awesome complexity.
I dare accept the artist in me, as well as the nurturing mother and the professional teacher.
I dare emerge from where I hid.
I dare BE. ME.