Marietta Cobb Museum of Art | Georgia Photography Juried Exhibit
Excited to participate in the Georgia Photography Juried Exhibit at the Marietta Cobb Museum of Art January 6 - March 17, 2024. If you love photography as I do, come to see the collection!
This image was chosen as part of Photo Art Pavilion's online juried exhibit 'Unveiling Abstraction: Unleashing Artistic Freedom'. I'm thankful for the opportunity to have my work seen. To view the whole collection visit:
Unveiling Abstraction: Unleashing Artistic Freedom.
I appreciate the opportunity to create new photographic work through freelance assignments, self-commissions, and participation in community groups such as Cobb Photographic Society.
During the Cobb Photographic Society Member Showcase exhibit, 'For the Love of Nature', I sold a print 'Purple Hosta'. I arranged to meet the buyer Don Kennedy, (R), at the library and I was to look for him, he'd be wearing a cap.
When Gary Blackwood, (L), arrived I introduced myself only to learn Gary wasn't the buyer. We started talking, and then Don arrived. Both Don and Gary are veterans and they share a familiarity with the local history of Marietta, and of course, their military service experience. Though I'm not from Marietta, Georgia, history intrigues me all the same, because we all can remember when things were different than they are now.
Photographing different places is one way to capture how things are now for however brief a moment 'now' is.
One of my favorite things to do is to explore my surroundings. You never know what you'll find. I encountered a submerged tree in Southington, CT, and was struck that it continued to bloom even though the structure broke. I wondered if the submerged branches reached the bottom of Crescent Lake and if they could keep growing.
For The Love of Nature
Excited to have two images included in the 'For The Love of Nature' exhibit. If you are in the Marietta, GA area stop by the Sewell Mill Library and Culture Center to see the works of the terrific Cobb Photographic Society!
A Market for All
As a photographer, I need to manage my assets. After decades of image-making, it feels necessary to create an archive. After all, if you love what you do, you need to take care of it. I consider digital asset management a responsible effort to make.
Currently, I'm in the discovery phase of researching platforms to sell my photography. I'm finding a huge buyer's AND seller's market, due the to fact that commerce sites and creatives are everywhere.
If there's any image you are interested in or you'd like to collaborate, contact me for licensing, print products, or just to say hi. I'd love to provide you with a solution for gift-giving, and home or office decor products.
Add color to your world with a framed print. This gorgeous maple tree stands outside my home and provides me with countless hours of admiration for its ever-changing beauty.
Celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month
Taking part in Hispanic Heritage Month can be an enriching human experience. The celebration calls attention to the rich and diverse cultures, histories, and contributions of Hispanic and Latinx individuals and communities.
I introduced myself to the Teótl Foundation a non-profit organization dedicated to celebrating and preserving the Mexican culture in Georgia and was delighted to see the folkloric ballet 'Algarabia Mexicana' where people of all ages performed dances that told stories. The colorful costumes swished their way into my imagination and the energetic foot-stomping made its way into my heart.
Let's all recognize the significant contributions of these communities and the richness they bring to our shared human experience.
Notes of Inspiration
There are many good people doing necessary good deeds in the world. Find a cause meaningful to you, and support their mission however possible.
LiveSafe Resources recently held a FUNdraiser, 'A Fashion Affair Good Looks for a Good Cause' which was the first of its kind for the organization. Attendees enjoyed the fashion show which included shopping for beautiful products beforehand to support those impacted by domestic violence. See the beautiful clothing designs by Chloé Kristyn by Bettina Benson here: A Fashion Affair Runway show.
Create a Welcoming Space
Your home is where you can truly enjoy the fruits of your labor. Create a space that's personal and pleasing to your tastes AND one that exudes a warm welcome to all who enter there.
Use colors, fabrics, and furnishings that offer comfort and visual inspiration. After all, your abode is a refuge from the stress of day-to-day demands. If you're not sure where to start, I'd recommend the ever-popular Pinterest site because it's full of diverse home decor styles and do-it-yourself ideas to inspire creativity.
Choose a favorite color palette for your walls and take time with big-ticket furniture purchases. For what to display on your walls, select from a wide variety of Fine Art Photography subject matter to define places within your home for relaxation.
I've begun to list some of my favorite photographs for sale on the Photo Pavilion site which is searchable by artist name or subject (abstracts, animals, landscapes, etc.). Much of the work I found there inspired me to share what I love doing ~ capturing the beauty that surrounds each of us. I encourage you to do what you love, too!
Food Education is a Community Effort
April 2023 arrived and it was finally safe to travel after COVID ran its long, and deadly course. Though not over yet, the pandemic was downgraded. After getting two vaccine shots and a booster, I traveled to New Orleans for a much-needed photography workshop.
The Momenta Workshops offer participants the opportunity to create new images while helping nonprofits tell their stories.
During the NOLA 2023 workshop, I worked with Sprout New Orleans, an organization that "supports established and developing small-scale and sustainable farmers, community gardeners, and farm workers in Louisiana with technical and social support to build a stronger, more equipped community of growers in Louisiana and help all New Orleanians be part of a community food system."
When it comes to food equity I believe, education is key. When you know better (choosing a balanced diet of nutritious options versus eating processed foods), you do better! Fresh food benefits the body and if you take the time to participate in the workings of a community garden, the learning experience can be its own reward, right up there with spinach, kale, tomatoes, eggplant, and whatever else is nurtured by each person's contributions.
What does the SECURE 2.0 Act mean for you?
Are you aware of how the SECURE 2.0 Act may impact you? Read 'What does the SECURE 2.0 Act mean for you?' for more information about the law, especially if you are approaching retirement age!
When President Biden signed into law the ‘Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement’ (SECURE 2.0 Act) on December 29, 2022, aspects of the law changed and it’s advantageous to know more about it and how it affects you.
The initial SECURE Act of December 2019 sought to make it easier for small businesses to set up retirement plans for their workforce. A contributing catalyst for the legislation was to address a looming retirement crisis in the U.S.
A 2021 Bureau of Labor Statistics report showed elevated levels of job movement for the “typical person born between 1957 and 1964.” This amounts to 57 million Americans who do not have the option to save for retirement at work, according to the AARP Public Policy Institute.
Numerous gaps in employment also mean gaps in employer-sponsored retirement savings plans. Additionally, when people move from job to job, the chance of cashing out a portion of savings increases, resulting in a lost opportunity for the money to earn compounded gains. Additionally, a 10% tax penalty is applied, and the nest egg gets reduced even more.
With underfunded or no retirement accounts this large contingent of Americans including freelancers and gig economy workers, makes the prospects of being able to retire unreachable.
Here are highlights of the recent updates:
* Increasing the age for the start date of required minimum distributions to age 73 (previously 72) in 2023, age 74 in 2029, and 75 in 2033, giving money more time to grow.
* Currently, if you are 50 or older you can make catch-up contributions to your retirement plan up to certain limits. With Secure 2.0, 2022 the limits are increased beginning in 2025 to $10,000 or 50 percent more than the regular amounts, which is a higher catch-up limit at four ages: 60,61,62, and 63. After 2025, those amounts will be indexed for inflation.
* Expanding the automatic enrollment period in retirement plans. According to Fidelity, “The legislation requires businesses adopting new 401(k) and 403(b) plans to automatically enroll eligible employees, starting at a contribution rate of at least 3%, starting in 2025. It also permits retirement plan service providers to offer plan sponsors automatic portability services, transferring an employee's low balance retirement accounts to a new plan when they change jobs. This change could be especially useful for lower-balance savers who typically cash out their retirement plans when they leave jobs, rather than continue saving in another eligible retirement plan. The legislation requires businesses adopting new 401(k) and 403(b) plans to automatically enroll eligible employees, starting at a contribution rate of at least 3%, starting in 2025. It also permits retirement plan service providers to offer plan sponsors automatic portability services, transferring an employee's low-balance retirement accounts to a new plan when they change jobs. The change could be especially useful for lower-balance savers who typically cash out their retirement plans when they leave jobs, rather than continue saving in another eligible retirement plan.”
* Elimination of the additional tax on corrective distributions of excess contributions. Corrective distributions happen when a company must return a portion of the contributions made by "highly compensated employees" (HCEs). Highly compensated employees are those who own 5% or more of the company or will have earned more than $125,000 in 2019.
Schwab lists these additional provisions:
* Employers will also have the option to allow employees to create "rainy-day funds" in their retirement plan. Individuals would then be able to withdraw up to $1,000 from the plan penalty- and tax-free for emergencies. The provision addresses a concern that spiked during the pandemic when employers saw a significant increase in the number of employees who were tapping their retirement accounts to cover unexpected expenses.
* Beginning in 2024, employers have the option to match student loan payments with a contribution to the employee's retirement plan account. The goal is to help workers who are burdened by student loans and cannot afford to contribute to their retirement plan by ensuring that they are accumulating some retirement savings even as they pay down their loans.
* Victims of domestic abuse can withdraw up to $10,000 penalty-free from their retirement plan account.
* Individuals can withdraw up to $22,000 from an employer-sponsored plan or an IRA for federally declared disasters.
* Individuals can roll up to $35,000 from a 529 to a Roth IRA in the name of the student beneficiary. The 529 account must have been in existence for at least 15 years. That provision will become effective in 2024.
* Long-term part-time workers will become eligible for their company's retirement plan after two consecutive years with at least 500 hours (about 3 weeks) of service. Current law requires three years of service.
* The creation of a "retirement savings lost and found" national database that would help individuals find their benefits if they changed jobs, or if the company they worked for moved, changed its name, or merged with a different company.
Working with a fiduciary, or financial advisor is a good strategy for savings and wealth building. For those nearing retirement, it is recommended you meet with your financial advisor to go over the best course of action to take for your situation for tax purposes.
VoyageATL's Rising Stars feature interview was an opportunity to look back on my journey. Try to see the whole picture when making changes, or as Maya Angelou said, “Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.”
Pay to Play Paves Road toward Goals
Click here to read the full article: Pay to Play Paves Road toward Goals
Coffee With Purpose
Circle Of Friends Inc.org met one of their goals and opened Circle of Friends Coffee With Purpose at Circuit Cafe at The Circuit, Cherokee County's first co-working space. Diane Keen, Circle Of Friends founding member, expresses why supporting people with intellectual and developmental disabilities is important.
There's no doubt that 2020 was a challenging year and will go down in history as hard times for so many people. The International Center for Photography initialized a call for art using the hashtag #ICPConcerned on Instagram. I submitted this photo in response. A three-month exhibit ran from Oct 01, 2020 – Dec 31, 2020.
Self as story
An entry from the Southington Community Cultural Arts 'Women Photographers of Connecticut' exhibit May 4-31, 2019 included a series of self-portraits that inspired this 'Self as story' post. I hope it inspires you too.
The Recipe I Can't Live Without
The Powerful yet Fragile Exhibition
Two images are part of the Women Photographers of Connecticut group exhibit centering around Connecticut's waterways, The Powerful yet Fragile: Connecticut Waterways at Stamford Museum, CT.
CUNY Graduate School of Journalism
I had the pleasure of working with Bob Sacha during the May'16 workshop through CUNY Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism. This was the 2nd workshop I've attended and I highly recommend the CUNY Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism as an educational resource.
The goal: tell a story without the use of 'talking heads,' a phenomenon that occurs all too frequently with video. My partner, journalist Issam Khoury, needed to attend a live demonstration mid-workshop, thus I fell back on familiar ways to complete the project.
I highly recommend CUNY for skill-set building. Great venue (New York City) and the instructors are pros with years of industry experience.
Creative Generosity Builds Communities
October - December 2015
Completing portrait projects in the name of volunteerism helps people connect, reflect, and put their best face forward in their job hunt.
Click the link for the story:
Creativity Generosity Builds Communities
WIPI Archive YALE / BEINECKE Library
Work is included in The Women in Photography International WIPI Archive at Yale / Beinecke Library
Connecticut Women Photojournalists Group Show
Westport Connecticut Library April 2015
Collection of over 80 photographs by twenty journalists showing daily assignment
works both news and features.
Connecticut Women Photojournalists Group Show
December 2014 - January 2015
McLevy Hall| - Bridgeport, CT
Collection by twenty journalists showing daily assignment
works both news to features. The collection contains over 80 photographs.
Ten Questions with Margaret Waage
February 6, 2014
Featured post on The Hungry Ghost Collective site (now inactive)
November 11, 2011
It's always in the least likely places that I'm inspired. A recent project photographing residents in a nursing home was one such experience. I'd been to Assisted Living facilities before but this one was different.
Everyone at the Skyview Center Nursing Home smiled - a lot. I got the feeling I was also being cared for by the director Sue Brooks, who I call an angel as I witnessed her caring for both residents and staff alike.
There were two photographers involved - myself and Mark Acme. Sue and Skyview staff members curated our images which culminated in an art show reception called 'Stories Through Photography,' for all residents and visitors to enjoy.
Legacy Landscapes Photo Exhibit at Weir Farm
September 8, 2011
Photo exhibit 'Legacy Landscapes' September 8, 2011 - Oct. 9, 2011.
Weir Farm National Historic Site
'Nature Nourishes' Art Show
August 20, 2011
Juried group art exhibit
'Nature Nourishes' Artspace Hartford, CT
Worked as Guest Editor, for W. Hartford, CT Patch
It was sad to cover a suicide symposium for the law enforcement sector.
Four Connecticut officers took their lives this year and the organizer,
Connecticut Alliance to Benefit Law Enforcement (CABLE), addressed
PTSD effects and that effort, I hope will enlighten those who choose a
profession that helps everyone, realize it's ok to protect themselves.
I had the pleasure of interviewing an 18-year officer as he said goodbye
to his partner of nine years, K-9 officer Kora, a beautiful female shepherd.
The happy part of the story is Kora remains the officer's pet so their relationship
while different is intact.
Wedding Anniversary - Wow
July 11, 2011
A twenty-year wedding anniversary doesn't happen every day so I thought I'd mention it. I'm impressed!
July 4 - July 10, 2011
Worked as a local editor on AOL media site:
During the week I saw stories about animal rescue, an outpouring of support for two brothers whose parents died from a domestic violence murder-suicide, a debate over a bonding appropriation for school overhauls, and a live music performance on the town green.
What is most telling about unrelated events is they each share a commonality - every event can be broken down into individual stories. It's great to see people come together to assist others, research the impact of a town budget, or simply enjoy life.
'What you can do today can improve all your tomorrows.' ~ Ralph Marston Author
'Legacy Landscape' CT Historic Garden Photo Exhibit
June 19, 2011
A collection of landscape photography on CT Historic Gardens.
Kellogg Environmental Center - Derby, CT
Look3 Festival of The Photograph