January 22, 2016

#ShowYouSTL Backstory - Aroused by Art

Back in October 2015 I had the pleasure of meeting an amazing artist by the name of Michelle. She is well known for her beautiful paintings and her unique style of photography. I contacted her via Facebook and asked if she would be interested in being a part of my photography project, ShowYouSTL. She was kind enough to accept my request and I met up with her within two weeks. I went to her loft downtown and she happen to drive by while I was waiting on the sidewalk to enter her loft. So I hopped in her car and she parked in the garage.

She had just gone to pick up something to eat and was racing to make it back for our meeting. She opens the door to her space and I'm immediately hit up with some of her paintings on the left side of the corridor and some of her photography portraits on the right side. As I further make my way to her living room I'm just in awe of all the beautiful paintings that her on walls. I also am able to see up close the amazing furniture that she has brought back to life. Two amazing coffee tables that are just stunning in person. All of her artwork (photos, paintings, and furniture) is just mesmerizing.

She invites me to sit down on her couch while she makes herself comfortable in the kitchen about to eat her dinner. She asks me if I would like to have some and I politely decline. I honestly have so much I want to ask her about photography, my mind is racing and I'm not sure where to begin. So I ask her when she started with her paintings and photography. She informs me that she has painting for a long time since she was child and  really blossomed in high school. She has been doing photography for close to 10 years.

I asked her how she became a full time artist and she states that she was working a job in the banking industry and she just wasn't happy anymore and decided that she needed to start doing things that she knew would make her happy. Even though she doesn't have the security of a 9 to 5 job, she states she has never been happier being able to call her own shots with her art and her life. She states she has become more aware about herself in other aspects as well. We also had a really stimulating conversation about politics.

She shared with me some basic photography techniques. I wish I had brought my tripod because with it being dark outside I unfortunately didn't have enough light to take really steady pics. Yet she did adjust the lighting in her living room and was able to take some steady pics of me. She told me the importance of breathing when taking your photos especially with dealing with lower light and the importance of keeping your ISO as low as possible for sharp pictures.

Overall I felt that my pictures of her definitely didn't do her justice but overall I had to remind myself that I'm still a newbie to this art form. Hopefully when I've progressed better I will be able to meet up with her again and can take some better pictures.

Go over to #SHOWYOUSTL to read more about Michelle and her connections to the STL. Michelle is my inaugural piece into my photography project. Thank you again Michelle.
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