No Validation Necessary
[by Gail Mooney]
I recently had the honor of having one of my still images on display in the Senate Rotunda in Washington DC. It was one of eleven photographs in the Copyright Alliance exhibit, “Recording Our History: Faces Behind the Camera“.
It was this portrait of blues drummer Sam Carr that I shot in 2001:
At that time, I had just started shooting video. I wanted to combine both mediums in a personal project about the Delta blues musicians. My plan was to shoot environmental still portraits and capture video interviews of the musicians talking about their music and growing up in the Delta during that time in America.
I spent weeks filling out every conceivable grant application and getting rejected every time. I knew I needed to capture these stories soon and that they couldn’t wait. The youngest musician was in his 70’s. Ultimately, I made it happen on my own dime – a bit slower than I wanted – but I made it happen. I have been rewarded financially and countless other ways. That was over ten years ago. It’s a lot easier now simply because of technology.
These days there seems to be a prevailing attitude of gloom and doom. We have an economy that can’t seem to turn itself around and we’re bombarded by change that’s thrust upon us. We’re scared to death of the unknown and nobody seems to know what to do next and how to make any money doing it.
Yet, I’ve never been more hopeful in my life. Why? Because I don’t need someone else to validate my ideas – and that is a powerful notion. There are no longer just a few gatekeepers with the keys to the kingdom. Technology has leveled the playing field.
Human beings will always have the need to communicate. These days we can communicate globally and with ease. An idea or creation can be shared around the world in a matter of minutes. Think of the power in that and think of the opportunities it presents.
Gail Mooney has recently finished her first feature film Opening Our Eyes. You can see a trailer and find out more about this project at www.openingoureyesmovie.com