For me, The Photo Schmoozer is about JOY and SPONTANEITY and PEOPLE & THEIR STORIES. It is going out and about with eager anticipation but without expectations of anything but discovering someone and 'chatting them up'. That I can do and that is so special. The scene this time is a small town on the Cohansey River called Greenwich. It was the sight of a tea burning during the Revolutionary War at the same time as the Boston Tea Party. On a drizzly weekend at the end of September, we went to see what was happening. Our friend Bill, the glass blowing guy was to be there doing his metal work. And what else?? Quien sabe?? The magnet that drew me into this particular story was the woman with the 'jaunty' dark green hat but more so, the purple t-shirt with the beautiful faerie!! (see top right picture and you will know what I mean) I stood for the longest time watching Francis Smith and Dana Gayner(in the green shirt) 'doing their thing'. They were adding so much joy and excitement to the lives of young children with their paints and brushes and creative ideas. The little blonde just glowed with her butterfly mask; the guy with his black bat mask and the little child with the designs that Francis so sensitively put on her arm so she would be able to see it.
There was a lull in customers so I decided to sit on a hay bale and 'chat'. Francis says she is a fibre artist, involved in choral music, and a photographer. As we talked - really listened to her, we also found out she is a world traveller. Her recommendation for the best location for 'chatting people up' and listening to their stories is Heathrow Airport in England. Where hasn't she been and where is she still going. "Want to join the trip to Morocco in January?" "Here is the name of the company I travel with. Come along." We talked about photography. She uses FILM and not sure she wants to try digital. Bill handed her his camera and, well, it was too much to figure out 'all of those buttons'. No matter. What is most important is that she is 'young and energetic' and never stops living!
I asked how she and Dana knew each other. They both said, "We are Friends and friends." Living in South Jersey with many Quaker meetings, I did know what they meant. They both belong to the same Meeting and have become friends through their art and other interests.
Francis got busy again, so I got to know Dana - yet another treat - an artist, an equestrian and a teacher. WE talked for awhile about the PROCESS of art, whether it is photography, painting, drawing or... She teaches art to children and like I learned years ago in undergraduate school. tries to instill in them our most important lesson: "That the PROCESS is more important than the PRODUCT". This is a lesson I am learning and sharing with my photography adventures. It is most important to me to go out, be still, see, and learn about myself and my world through the process. Hmmmmmm I haven't printed my pictures...yet...and don't have them hanging around the house...yet...I am happy to have been gifted with the energy of the visions. So enjoy the pictures of my new friends of all ages. Be SPONTANEOUS when you go out and about and engage in YOUR PROCESS. It is such an individual experience.
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