C&T Publications 50 States of Art - 2015 - Page 88

Barbara D. Richards - Arizona “The greatest satisfaction derives from the realization of your individual potential, perceiving something in your own way and expressing it through adequate understanding of your tools. Take advantage of everything; be dominated by nothing except your convictions. Do not lose sight of the essential importance of craft.” ~ Ansel Adams When Barbara Richards takes a photograph, she is so focused on the process that nothing else exists around her. She explores her subjects and sees light, color, and endless possibilities. Barbara describes her own work as vivid, sharply defined, and layered – she loves color and is drawn to compositions with many textures. Throughout her life, Barbara has ventured into many fields, but has always been drawn to creative pursuits such as clothing design, painting, and ultimately, photography. The beauty of nature originally inspired her to learn more about photography, and she has perfected her technique over the years while living in Washington, Arizona and Utah. She enjoys teaching others about photography, and feels the collaboration of the camera clubs she belongs to is important. She has been inspired by and gets ideas from other photographers, but her work shows her unique way of seeing the world. When people comment on Barbara Richards' photographs they say that she “really has an eye” for beauty and knows how to compose a good picture. She is often able to see a photograph where others may not. Although many photographers feel they have to hike to remote destinations to get fresh, stunning landscape photographs, Barbara (who doesn't enjoy hiking) says, “When the light is right, you can take a beautiful picture of anything, wherever you are.” She encourages other photographers to explore, take pictures from different angles, and to “turn around and look behind you – your next picture is right there.” She hopes that viewers will take from her work whatever inspires them, and perhaps remember the beauty of a place they have visited. Barbara's photography is constantly evolving, and recently she has become interested in human subjects and computer photo enhancement. She values the entire process of designing, taking, and developing, a picture into her own work of art, including the unlimited potential available with computer technology. She considers displaying her work to be part of the process, and enjoys the shows and galleries she has been a part of. She hopes to continue to show her work in local galleries, in Arizona, and eventually in New York. http://fineartamerica.com/profiles/barbara-d-richards.html Here is my piece. It is called Armageddon. You don't often see a Saguaro being taken over with vines. The wicked sky reminds me of Armageddon. The magnificent Saguaro is found exclusively in the Sonoran Desert, which covers large areas of Southeastern California and Southwestern Arizona, as well as Baja California, Baja California Sur, and Northwestern Mexico, for a total area mass of about 120000 miles. The Saguaro is the largest cactus in the United States, growing to a height of between 40 to 60 feet tall, and can weigh as much as 4800 pounds. With the right environmental conditions these regal desert denizens can live to be 200 years old. The wood of dead Saguaros has been used for many things throughout the centuries, including as water containers used by the Native Americans, and in more modern times have been used for creating furniture, roofing and fencing. Certain species of desert birds can also be found living in holes in the body of the Saguaro. 83