During the last year I've enjoyed sharing old family photographs on my Instagram account. These photographs I shared had been pieces of a project that I worked on for six years from 1997 until 2002.
In 1997 during a trip to my grandparents' house, I found a cigar box of 80 mm negatives. Since I was taking a photography class at the time, I asked my grandmother if I could borrow the negatives. I printed hundreds of the prints in large format and used them as a catalyst for interviews with my grandparents and mother.
I asked my family to write parts of their interview directly on the front of the photograph. These images and the handwritten text became the starting point for a extensive research project about the transition of three generations of women in my family illustrated by the photographs they took of their lives.
I decided to rework some of these images into a book project. It's given me great joy to collate these images. I think this photographic memoir of place and generations is larger than one family or the place, the South, or time, the 1950s and 1960s. It is a common story one that not only represents the word connection but also physically displays one of my favorite quotes, "When an old man dies, a library burns to the ground." (African proverb)
You can check out the paperback here.
I have also published a children's book based on black and white photographs I took of my grandfather while I was in college. You can find the paperback of The Lazy Gardener here.