Since the photographers featured in the Local Photographer Showcases in each city are supremely talented and excited about reaching new audiences with their work, we will be regularly featuring them to give you more insight into their work and their experience Crusading. Next up is Alysia Macaulay from the New York pop-up:
Tell us a little about your background as a photographer and where you are now with your work.
I fell in love with photography when I was in grade school and my father gave me my first camera, a konica slr. My high school years were spent behind a camera and learning the ins and outs of a darkroom. Regrettably, during my college and early post-college years my focus shifted away from photography. I did, however, write my baccalaureate essay on Dorothea Lange's "Migrant Mother", an image to which I still feel very connected. Though in fits and spurts, photography remained a passion of mine until my children were both in school full-time and I was able to make photography a real priority. I studied at ICP and adored every minute spent shooting and being immersed in a community of like-minded artists. Heaven!
I am currently working on a few different projects. After I had two solo show for my series, "The Quiet", I began shooting "Night Light", which I plan to resume working on this summer. As well, last spring I began making shadow boxes, utilizing my images in a three-dimensional way. Working with my hands proved to be extremely satisfying and offered new types of challenges that I welcomed. It was also a pleasure to be able to take a break from working on my images exclusively on the computer. Most recently, I have begun a new body of work that I am really excited about. I am shooting my children's toys. Many adored and worn from years of love and attention, but rarely interacted with now, this series is really an homage to my children's early childhood. It is also a way for me to pay my respects, in a sense, to these objects that have played such an integral role in my children's development during their most formative years.
How did you hear about the Crusade, and what were your initial impressions?
I became aware of Jennifer Schwartz and the Crusade mainly through social media. I found the concept to be both highly original and engaging. I have always been a fan of public art, so this was right up my alley.
Were you excited to participate in the Local Photographer Showcase? Why or why not?
I was very excited to participate as a local photographer in New York. I loved the idea of interacting with total strangers as a group to show our work and encourage collecting.
How did the event go for you? Was it like you expected or different? Better or worse?
It was tough! New Yorkers are on the move and not much can derail them from getting to where they want to go. The experience as a whole was both better and worse than I had anticipated. Worse because I was surprised at how persistent and vocal I needed to be in order to get someone to stop and look and listen. It was definitely not how I typically like to interact with people. That said, when I did engage in a dialog about the work and collecting art with complete strangers it was incredibly rewarding.
What do you hope will come out of the experience for you - personally and professionally? Do you think those are realistic expectations?
Networking for sure. I will keep in touch with the photographers from our group, a varied and lovely bunch. As I am relatively new to Brooklyn, I would love to build my own community of like-minded artists, like I found at ICP. As well, I hope to gain exposure for my photography through my involvement with the Crusade. I have bodies of work that I am very proud of and would love to find the right venue in which to exhibit. My images tell stories that I hope people will find engaging and thought provoking.
Tell us about the image you gave away at the event and how to see more of your work.
The image I gave away was from a series titled "Sheltered". It has a double meaning, as the photographs in the series depict a time in my family's life when we were finding our way through and nearing the end of a very challenging period. This body of work was a follow-up to "The Quiet" series, and I photographed it on Shelter Island, New York.
To see more of my work you can go to my website www.alysiamacaulay.com.
Thank you Jennifer for an amazing and inspiring experience! Rock on Crusaders!