Children Photos for Seattle Art Museum Contest

I’ve spent the last few days finding 6 photos for a contest. Below are my photos as well as my artist’s statement!

Click on any of the photos to see a caption of what I saw in this photo, and to add to what you are seeing!

Artist statement

Dan Windisch

Introduction

I’ve traveled the world, lived long, and shared beauty. I share beauty through my photographs and the words that accompany my art (please do visit my website beautyshared.org to see more of my work!).

My photographs, combined with my words, provide new ways of seeing, thinking, feeling, and appreciating. By seeing through my “photographer’s eye” there can be a deeper appreciation of beauty. My hope is that the observer will leave with a newer, and broader, way of seeing beauty itself.

Words combined with visual arts are greater than the sum of their parts. This is eloquently evidenced in the movie “Words and Pictures” (2013). I use both.

In America, we are surrounded by beauty, and constantly immersed in ugliness.  The media, in 24-hour cycles, endlessly emphasizes fear and anger, exploiting and deepening tragedies. We have too many choices, are too busy, have too many “do-ings” and not enough “be-ings.” 

We do not know how to see, be immersed in, and be still enough, to appreciate the beauty surrounding us all. I want to help change that.

Current Submission/Theme: “Children: Moments of Connection, Magical Moments that Matter

These 6 photos have a common theme: “Baby and children: magic moments of connection.”

Capturing those “special moments” in a photograph is what I wanted to do.  I also hope that seeing those photographed moments of connection with a child will encourage in the viewer spending and cherishing even more special moments with children.

I also added captions to each of the photos  to help the viewer see how I saw the beauty in each picture. This hopefully will add to their way of seeing and appreciating each photo. I am a poet and a photographer.

Below are my captions for each of the six photos I have submitted.

1. Baby just before sleep, before language, eye-to-eye with me, no expression, just being. Buddha like. Surrounded by beauty she cannot see, purples and browns, textures, curving shaped fabrics, gentle light.

2. Baby moment of complete joy! Newly walking, pushing her toy, her eye to grandpa’s eye. Total moment of JOY! While unbeknownst to her, her hand blurs in motion,her ponytail cascades in the white background light. A precious moment captured.

3. This is my grandson, a bright, loving, loved, unique and special boy looking at a single yellow tulip surrounded by a field of red tulips.

4. Bright eyed Tanzanian school children stopped to talk with us on their way home. I love the colored sweater, the pencil in mouth, backpacks, and strawberry shirt. They are excited to talk to us but also very shy. Red dusty road behind. Another moment in-between. Late afternoon’s gentle light.

5. On a service trip to the Midwest I played with, and photographed, two beautiful children in a poverty day care.  I love this shot. In-between play, in a quiet reflective moment, looking up, with quiet dark beautiful eyes, his head large and out of proportion. Lightning tattoo. In-Between moment.

6. Same service trip. At the green picnic table, in a quiet reflective moment, looking up, with quiet large dark beautiful eyes, colorful braided hair, head in hand. Meditative. In-Between.

My commitment to Developing my work

Grandma Moses began “painting in earnest” at age 78. Although I am no Grandma Moses, I am 66 years old, have a large collection of excellent photographs I’ve taken through the years to work with, and have two photo/poetry books published. I will soon be able to retire from being a full-time professor and have enough income to devote my time and effort to my art. My age has added wisdom and humility that will serve my art. I have  a precious 10-15 years to develop and share my work. I want to do that.

For 26 years as a professor I taught future counselors compassion, service, the importance of the moment, and the role of beauty in healing. I’ve also taught them to expand their ways of seeing situations, to help the client see more than they currently see. My art will follow those themes.

I want to continue my photos and poems.  Some of the works I want to do include are: “The Beauty of Shapes, Curves Lines, Light and Shadow” “Trees in all their Incarnations, from saplings to sentinels, to wise old souls, to carved bowls and canoes.”  “Statues from a photographers eye”, “Seeing with the Photographers Eye” “Compassion”, “Service”, “Moments of Connection”, “Moments, Moments, Moments.”

The Impact the Award will have on the artist

I believe I have many pieces of art that are beautiful and that I want to share. By receiving this award others will see my work. I have no desire for wealth or fame. But I do believe that I can add a sense of awe and wonder in the beauty that surrounds us all to a larger audience. Receiving this award would be a great honor and would be a big step in that process.

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