Artist Statement

THE BOOK OF JAMES

Since early childhood, I have connected with engaging narratives. Whether from a book, film, or episodic television series, words and imagery help me to conjure imaginary worlds where I can escape.

As a photographer, I am a visual storyteller. Dramatic vignettes unfold, providing underlying themes of love, relationships, loss, and hope in our queer culture.

My latest series, “The Book of James” was inspired by my best friend James – who is also the “actor” in the series inspired loosely by the book of “James” of the New Testament. This photographic tale originated through my interpretation of themes from the Bible and the character of James as he deals with the trials and tribulations of modern life. The viewer watches as the character experiences personal moments of faith and prayer. Just like in the Bible, the character of James is not only seen in momentary heroics of day-to- day living, but also a man who is faced with temptation and sin – aspects of humanity to which many individuals relate.

As time passed, although I had created a descriptive list of shots that I wanted to construct, I began to realize that the shooting sessions with my friend James became increasingly fluid. Rooted in energy between the two of us during the shoot, I realize the gift of having a subject who understands my vision. James was the embodiment of my creative vision. His unexplainable knowing and understanding became a necessary medium to convey my story. I had found my alter ego and surrogate; a person with whom I felt a primal connection.

The natural relationship between my subject and myself was a gift revealed through the process of creating, a theme not uncommon to my creative process.