WIPNYC is one year old

Wow, it's been an entire year since Amy Elkins and Cara Phillips began Women in Photography. It feels very symbolic, as these past 365 days have been a period of exponential growth for me, and last year's WIP launch party feels like the inception of that growth. One year ago today there had been a huge thunderstorm, and our power was out for two days. Regardless, I trekked into Manhattan to attend the opening, really my first outing of that kind in a good long while. I had just started to get back into submitting and showing my work, my blog was new, and I was extremely nervous. I arrived and felt out of place, that no one knew who I was, that I was an impostor, that I had no idea how to balance motherhood with this creative world I was just entering back into. Granted, this was all based on my own insecurities, as everyone I met at the party was welcoming and gracious, particularly Justin James Reed and Will Steacy. So overall the evening was enjoyable, but I left feeling fragile, entering my house where all of the windows were open, my family asleep, no lights glowing in our town. I remember I sat for a long time looking out at the dark street, wondering if I had any real place in photography, if I fit in as a mother, where my work was headed.

And here I am, back from one of the most wonderful trips of my life, where I felt completely at home, more fully part of a supportive community, leaving with a confirmation that photography is just what I need to keep me grounded. The depth of the passion I feel for my work has really intensified; the confusion and sense of being out of place have been replaced by even more energy and purpose. This isn't to say that I don't still have my struggles, and moments where I feel uninspired or spread thin, but I no longer question whether combining motherhood with my creative pursuits is worth it. I feel such gratitude that it is June 10th 2009 and not June 10th 2008.

Cara and Amy have also done an incredible amount this past year--it's quite amazing how much press and interest their site has gotten in such a short time. Unfortunately I won't be able to mark this milestone by attending the grant award gathering this evening, but if you'd like to go tonight here are the details:

"WIPNYC would like to invite you to celebrate its one-year anniversary and its first ever WIP-Lightside Individual Project Grant Recipient at the National Arts Club Grand Gallery on June 10th, 2009 (address: 15 Gramercy Park South). The event will include a reception for the artist and a slideshow presentation of their work, which will also be featured in a wipnyc.org online solo showcase opening on June 16, 2009.

The reception begins at 6:00pm, and the grant award celebration will begin at 7:00pm. RSVP is required for the event. Please RSVP at rsvp@wipnyc.org.

Women in Photography launched in June of 2008 as an outlet for women photographers to exhibit work outside of the traditional commercial art world. Showcasing emerging photographers in addition to mid-career and established artists, it is designed as a resource for photographers, editors, curators, gallery owners, and the general public to discover and enjoy the work of women artists. As an internet-based project, the site reaches a global audience. Exhibitions are co-curated by Amy Elkins and Cara Philips. Women in Photography is a Humble Arts Foundation project."

Congratulations to WIP!

And yes, I know I owe all of you some posts about the Review, which I'll get to soon, it just felt pressing and pertinent to write about this important anniversary first.


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