Ah, the aquarium.

So, today, me and Juliette went to the New England Aquarium, and I’m confident in saying that it was one of the best adventures I’ve had in such a long time. I set a mental challenge to photograph the aquarium entirely in black and white, and I am quite happy that I did.

Black and white photography is an art form that I am still getting the hang of, but in a place like the aquarium, where the entire aesthetic is defined by a cool (greens/blues) pallet, black and white seems like an odd way to cover such a defined space. In the beginning, I was very scared of black and white, for the main reason that it seemed so far from the current reality of any scene that I was photographing. Black and white was old, a reminder of a lost time, with color being current and trending.

However, as my photography evolved and my attitudes towards photographing a scene changed, I found myself going back to black and white, on the grounds that color was so subjective and it determined the mood of the photograph so much more than the subtle details that made a shot interesting. Black and white eliminated all of that, focusing on the scene as it really was, paying attention to the detail and the mood of an expression or moment with such crystal clear clarity.

So, with a change in attitude, I shot the aquarium in black and white, and I can confidently say that this has to be one of my favorite photo-sets that I have ever shot and edited. I took the time, constructed each shot, changed the aperture and focus as neccesarry, with really telling results.

Edited on Lightroom.

Flashes in the dark
Sunny side up
Pushing Through
Sticking Together

Fall Semester

So. For those of you who have been keeping up with my fall semester photography project, titled: “A Conversation”, you all know that I have photographed quite a few humans.

Before this project, I had never shot a portrait. So, to practice, I made a plan: to meet people at Clark who would be comfortable with me photographing them. Good amount of people were interested, and out of the 45-ish people who expressed interest, I got the chance to shoot about 30-ish people. The project first started out pretty small, photographing about 3 to 4 people per week, and on average about 200-300 shots per person. However, time went on, and as my skills with my all manual lens (a new addition to my kit) got better, people started to notice more and more the job that I was doing. People were posting the photographs on their instagram’s and social media and after certain shoots, a lot of people came up to me and wanted to be photographed as well.

At times, it was very overwhelming. I would be telling a lie if I said every shoot went perfectly and every shot was a work of art, because that was far from the reality. Soon, mid way into the project, I stepped back and analyzed all the photos I had taken through the mid way point and I understood why people were getting excited — the photos were real. They had their own aesthetic. Even though the humans I was photographing were all unique in their own ways, there was a common thread which ran through all the portraits: the frozen shots were immortalized moments within a conversation that portrayed them how they really are (at least from my point of view). I wanted them to feel comfortable talking to me whatever they wanted to talk to me about — i gave them the space and it was such a humbling experience to get to know the humans who made the Clark community as rich and vibrant as it is now.

Honestly, I can say that this project has given me a unique insight on how I use photography to connect with the people around me. The search for a genuine connection is really the main focus of my photos, emphasizing the spontaneity of a moment that is unique.

And I would not want it to be any other way.

But, Here are the best shots (1 for each person 🙂 ) No particular order.

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Sadie S.
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Sadie A.L.
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10.08.2017: iDentity

First off, yes that is my sister as the featured image.

Strange. I never thought my photography journey would bring me to the point where i acutally identify myself as a photographer. Honestly, my camera is with me 24/7 and I dont think I would have it any other way.

My photographs inform the way i look at the world, through no praticular filter. Im noticing a clear motif in my style — i love organic. Organic moments that is. Nothing staged — just simple, emotive photography. Also tending to gravitate towards more analog style editing to give it that nostalgic, grainy look that was so classic and beautiful. Black and white is also making a comeback in my style, both in the raw setting and in post editing.

But I shot some photos in a cafe when I was doing HW with the sister for 2 hours that kinda clearly shows where im at.

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“exit here”

365 Project: 78 – 82

Cover Photo: Stephen DiRado

Its been a crazy time since last post.

#78, Sept. 13 : Taako the Golden Boy
#79, Sept 14: Green Hill Park ft. Dani, Alyssa, Pawan
#80, Sept 15: Mid Conversation ft. Gil, Julia, Kenny, Will (off frame)
#81, Sept 16: Stars outside JSC
#82, Sept 17: Photo Studio ft. Stephen

365 Project: Photographs 63 – 77

Omg, its been a while since ive posted on this blog! Mainly because wordpress suspended connection with my personal page, but i connected it to my photography page, so YAY TECHNOLOGY!!!

But anyway, here are the next 15 photographs from this project, ranging from candids to more constructed photographs!

08-29-2018 : Jess and Shiela
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08-30-2018: New Glasses ft. Emma
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08-31-2018: Visitor
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09-01-2018: Stop and Shop Parking Lot
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09-02-2018: Matriculation
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09-03-2018: Golden Hour in Sackler
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09-04-2018: Discussion Done
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09-05-2018: Scrabble
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09-06-2018: Noon
09-07-2018: Mitch
09-08-2018: Finn
09-09-2018: Mushrooms
09-10-2018: Arnold the Ghost
09-11-2018: Sackler
09-12-2018: Artist


365 Project: Photographs 60 – 62

Cover image: Will in the Library

So, as all of you know, I have been working on a 365 project since the beginning of July as a way of filling time over the summer, but also as a physical reminder of showing an interesting thing or person that I met that day.

So, these are the first 3 posts since getting back to Clark on Sunday and officially kicking off my 4 months of zero social media presence.

I am going to be posting these photographs in posts of 3 images with the number, the date, and the person, place, or thing that I document.

62/365: 08.28.2018 — Smile w/ Will
61/365: 08.27.2018 — Intermediate Photography w/ Stephen
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60/365: 08.26.2018 — Move In w/ Kenny and Sammy

The Unknown

With the end of sophomore year and the summer of turning 20, I will be in Washington state pursuing a sustainable farming internship. I leave on the 15th of May and return the end of June, and for the first time in my life, I will be away from home on my birthday as well as conquering one of my biggest fears: travelling solo.

Doesn’t it scare you? Leaving and being on your own for the first time in life? You don’t know how to drive, how to ride a bike, or even how to make your own food. I object. What are people going to say? Where are you going to stay? Who is going to pick you up from the airport when you land? Are they trustworthy? You will always go with anyone, how can we be so sure you will go safely? 

I get it, the people that I have told my fears too have told me one thing in response: you will be ok. But I still cannot seem to grasp the butterflies in my stomach and the cloudiness in my brain when I hear the word solo. It is a word defined by the emotions it represents: freedom, independence, and more often than not, is associated with the feelings of being so tired of a specific place that all you want to do is run from it.

My dad always used to tell me stories of the Himalayas when I was growing up. Hiking amongst the majestic, snow covered peaks with his sandals being broken with each weary step he took. I will be surrounded by forests and a long, snaking river, carving its way through the landscape of my mind, defining it with every crash, bubble, and gurgle of a child. It is where I was meant to be and where I will always be going towards. 

The fear that I have is not singular, no. It is an integrated feeling that has been drilled into my head from when I was very young, that travelling was dangerous. That as a girl, I am often going to be a target. That things would happen. And I did not think I would be confronting that fear so soon in my life. But, while I confront my fear of the unknown, the personality that I have developed over 2 years that dosent give a single shit about it comes out.

A storm rages inside her mind as the boat crashes towards the watery depths of the ocean. Lightning strikes, with the dark, swirling clouds of Maleficent’s castle on a cliff make me start to cry in the airport. The tears rush down, as salty as the ocean as I fly over, as I look down in awe. 5 minutes later, the sun comes out. 

Life is too short to keep living in our fears and not step out the box, and believe me, I don’t plan on sitting down and watching. There is an adventure ahead of me, and boy am I gonna run after it.

8:45 Estabrook. Floor 3

Guys I thought today was going to be a regular thursday. Class, lunch, photoshoot, sleep. As all regular days go.

I always get to spanish 15 minutes before 9 and sit in a chair across from Prof. Tobin’s room on the third floor of Estabrook. Today, I was writing notes on film photography (probably will make film my primary mode of photography, leaving digital for events, but that’s another post). Usually there is no one on the floor except electricians fixing the ever problematic wires dangling from the patchy ceiling.

9:45, 3rd floor Estabrook- a custodian walks by me talking to herself. I asked her how she was doing and she responded with upset and confused. She told me her husband was sick with cancer combined with severe rheumatoid arthritis. She told me that he didn’t look good and his health was deteriorating before her very eyes. “I’m sorry”, I said, not knowing what to respond. His doctor, also with cancer, couldn’t give him medications to calm his arthritis, knowing that it would cause the cancer to form tumors internally. Angry, confused, and upset, she walked on, still talking to herself as she continued to do so.

7:10, red chairs UC – I can’t stop thinking. I can’t stop thinking about how short life is. I want to cry, but I can’t and don’t want to in the middle of the library. I’m here, in college, with a roof over head, people who care and with no serious health issues. I am privileged to live such a life, and often I take it for granted. There are few things I regret — not going to be able to study abroad in my 4 years of undergrad, not having a pet, but in the grand scheme of things, these things are meaningless. I exist, and that’s a gift in and of itself.

I didn’t think this 6 minute conversation would impact me as much as it did, but conversations are a moment of reflection that is often taken for granted. I don’t think I will ever be able to feel the same emotions as the custodian I met today in Estabrook, but I can sure get into her headspace. She was hopeless, searching for a cure that will keep eluding her, as sisyphus was with his rock and tantalus with the grapes. This was a tunnel with no light at the end, an endless stretch of black trapped against a bright blue sky.