Through the mind’s eye of artist Rebecca Meyers
The Hammond Regional Arts Center will be hosting panorama photography from Rebecca Meyers for the first time ever. There will be a reception celebrating this exhibit on Friday, Feb. 3 from 5-8 p.m. The artwork will hang until Feb. 24.
Meyers’ vision for her photography is inspired by living life and the journeys she has taken.
“When we travel to or through a place, we do not remember single images one at a time,” said Meyers. “When we think of our trip, it is as if one single giant remembrance flashes in our mind’s eye layered with what we saw, and what we did, and how we felt, and gives us an overall feeling of our trip and the place or places we visited.”
This idea of portraying an entire traveling in one photo is what Meyers aims to show in her artwork.
“It is not just an image we see, but an entire experience,” said Meyers. “That is what I am trying to capture in my photographs.”
Meyers uses traditional photography to show what she sees in her mind’s eye.
“It starts with simple black and white film,” said Meyers. “My most favorite medium is film. When you use film, you have to carefully choose each moment captured. It’s not like taking digital photographs where you can click and click as many times as you want.”
In revealing why she loves black and white film, Meyers explained that using film is different from modern day photography options.
“You have to breathe the moment and live within it,” said Meyers. “You have to anticipate. The camera becomes an extension of your eye, your heart and your mind.”
She received the initial notion for this type of photography 14 years ago.
“The idea for my panoramas, which I call ‘Crossings,’ began to develop in 2003 when I had to travel by train each day,” said Meyers. “I was living in San Bernardino and working in Los Angeles. I traveled 80 miles each way on the train to and from work. As I passed through these small towns, train yards, industrial areas and so many odd landscapes dotted with people, a giant image would form in my mind.”
Meyers took this experience and expanded it in the form of art.
“It wasn’t a series of single images, but one enormous picture of overlapping recollections on my inner mental canvas,” said Meyers. “It was not only a combination of what I had seen, but my reactions and emotions. I began to wonder how to recreate these images that I saw in my mind in real time. Robert, my mentor and I began to experiment. It was from there that the technique developed.”
Meyers’ photos are inspired by the world around her and her desire to share them with others.
“I have always seen the world as a series of stills broken only by my breathing,” said Meyers. “Moments leap out of the stream of my daily experiences, suspended in time and space, frozen, like a tableau within the image, experiencing the place for themselves. I want them to come away with their own memory of the place like they’ve been there.”
She expressed advice for other photographers.
“The most important aspect of photography is experimentation and having experiences,” said Meyers. “You have to be willing to take risks. You have to travel outside of your comfort zone. To be a great photographer, I think your eyes have to be open to the world, and the only way to open them is traveling. It opens your mind to other lives and other viewpoints.”
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