I left New York for Massachusetts farm country in part to live the locavore life, defined mainly as eating locally, sustainably, and organically. What I hadn't anticipated is how it is more often than not an extension of people's spiritual lives. In my photography, I was initially drawn to photographing individuals who confront dangers in nature, allowing themselves to be vulnerable. Examples of these are bee keepers who wear no protective clothing and catfish noodlers who fish for seventy pound catfish with their bare hands. While photographing them, I watched them enter a transformative and meditate state that I see also exists in certain farm activities. I observed a reverence for nature rather than the absence of fear. Much of the current literature and film presents the negative sides of industrial farming without enough celebration of the positive aspects of small scale, sustainable, local, organic farms. I am interested in photographing people who work with animals on these farms and in the wild to expose the spiritual conviction they have for this way of life, as a gesture to my commitment and belief in its importance as well.
Shedding Light, Amherst, MA, 2011