TCF Ep. 478 - Sheila Pree Bright
There is currently an exhibit at the annenberg space for photography here in los angeles dedicated to hip hop photography called contact high it provides a comprehensive overview overview of how photography was used to market and shape the image and character of hip hop though initially defined by the sounds of 'em sees on the streets and clubs new york. It was the photographs that demonstrated that hip hop was as much about style as it was attitude. One of the photographers that helped define that era was sheila pre bright who began her documentation of the music scene not a new yorker even los angeles but in texas which provided a unique opportunity to photograph in ever evolving music scene at the same time she was learning the ins and outs of being working commercial photographer which sometimes involved not turning down an opportunity and i tend my first photography job was <hes> what burger king didn't know what i was doing. I was at a function and i can't remember how it all reflected but i met at this guy and he said he worked for burger king and he was looking for a photographer shoot areas. He said you know how to do that. I'm like yes. I didn't know how to do that right doc so he says you got a job and i'm so naive and i'm like okay so i went to one of the photographers that i was standing studying underneath and as cam i told him i had a job he said. How did you get that. I said he's i told him. I knew how to do aerial shots in an asset well. Can you be the system and you teach me while we up in the air and that's how it happened has been defined by her fine art photography obvi- her concepts are frequently inspired by questions of equality justice and what exactly does it mean to be an american in her work suburbia she explore the homes of middle and upper middle class black families while the images focused more on the space rather than its occupants it managed to still challenge the assumptions and and when i got there i had to still have publishers curator's consultants to look at the work and the majority majority of them when they looked at the work and i don't know why i was so stunned they didn't get it because they said that i didn't have in a signifies in the work to show that these as were black homes at baffled may because we're in the twenty first century and it showed me how a stereotype in once consciousness business is still there even though you showing them reality is like this look like my home. Why didn't you call it black suburbia. I i haven't heard of you suburbia. This is all of the stuff that was coming at me and me as an artist. I happen to be black and i'm calling it suburbia. I've been project it on because they want to identify it with blackness. Whatever the signifies that they wanted to see we'll talk to sheila butter work documenting the black lives matter movement and why public exhibition of her work is sometimes more important than being shown in a gallery. This is your body and ex and welcome back to the candidate frame. Thank you for having me but yeah thanks. I enjoyed meeting you d._c. Now get a proper chance to talk with you extensively. I would ask you know it was my pleasure meeting you. It's good to meet people that we don't know that's in a business. You wanna look like us actually and you work was amazing. I thought you underplayed underplayed it because you were going on. I'm trying to figure out. I don't know what to do and i want to keep it sure yeah. It's i don't know i just i guess this is who i am because i'm that that that it may not seem like i'm shy but i'm really still still kind of introverted it to me is about the work and not necessarily about me and i guess that's why i don't really like to speak to a certain certain extent but i have to. You did a good job once. The wheels are greased. You okay but i was reading up on you. It was interesting to see that you didn't get a bachelor's degree in photography came like later and it was your dad who encourage you to use cameras at right right. Actually my undergrad is text out these i so i don't i'm self taught as a photographer and when i moved to atlanta in nineteen ninety six my father is the one that says there's something about the photography and he said you're going to grad school. So that's why i went to georgia state in. I received my m._f._a. There yet that's when it started with him he he was like the fourth of everything say you going here because you have a very king interested in this is your dad and artists himself where it was just something that he saw i saw in the work that that spurred him that you know when i reflect that my father was the person in the family that would always be taking the photographs autographs of us and even when we travel he was the one when we traveled a lot and i remember distinctly as a young child in germany. He kept us in the museums. We had to go to the museums and stuff. He told me when i was young and this was in germany he says. I don't know what what you gotta do but you're going to do something creative but he didn't know what that was. So when you finished school you went down to texas and started photographing graphing hip hop. Why why did you feel driven to do that because this is early in the game when it isn't it isn't what it is now right right. Well you know coming from a background a daughter of a soldier. I think we were sheltered. Even we've around diversity. I wasn't really in the black community so when i graduated my brother how i got to houston was my older brother there. He was in houston so i moved there and i was just a curious person. I mean i didn't start off taking porteous of rappers. I actually started in the commercial side of it and i hung around professional photographers offers and they taught me the technical aspects of photography from the shutter speeds to the f. stotts about lighting and i tend my our first. <hes> photography job was what burger king didn't know what i was doing. I was at a function and i can't remember remember how it all reflected but i met this guy and he said he worked for burger king and he was looking for a photographer shoot areas. He said you know how to do that. I'm like yes. I didn't know that right so he says well. You've got a job and i'm so naive and i'm like okay so i went to one one of the photographers that i was studying underneath. I told him i had a job he said. How did you get that. I said he's i told him i knew how to do aerial shots and and i said well can you be the system and you teach me while we up in the air and that's how it happened. My first professional job was up the air with a door of hanging out taking photographs of areas and the photographer. That was a professional photographer. He play my sister this then he threw up. We couldn't come back down because we had to. <hes> seventeen locations we had to shoot in the pilot was was oh he was upset because you know when he threw out all of that flew on me and because the doors open it was crazy and he so apologetic any in sorry sorry we came down but that was my first entry into photography and the commercial ram didn't like it so i decided well. I wanna go foot photograph wrappers. I was real curious about hip hop okay and so i started hanging out in urban communities and started photographing and i start one thing led to another i was photographing independent that record companies and these young black males okay and then from there rap a lot found out about me because i was like the girl in houston texas that shooting shooting all of them so that's how it all started because at the time it was all about new york and a little bit you know l._a. What was happening in sort of in between those two wasn't really sort of a sort of a hot spot but it was happening everywhere so it was like it was really advantageous that you were in houston at the time yeah ah i didn't realize that at the time because you know you're familiar with rap a lot record in j. Prince you know he has a book out now. Call the art of respect yes that book is up and he talked about his career as as a record label company and i was a part of that i came in shooting scarface not the ghetto boys because that's when scarface brokaw from the ghetto boys and they were pushing him more and that is is who i was actually photographing and i was ashley photographing the other artists that is not as popular on rap a lot records. It's like big mike that i think there was one album and it was something is calls something serious at photograph tam for his city cover black monks wchs champs too low so i have a lot big mello a lot of them. I am fifth ward boys. Those are the ones that are photograph on rap a lot records. You have to at the time. It's it wasn't the image of what a rapper supposed to look like and be like was not as rigid as eventually angelique became you know where people were looking epi album covers they would see the pictures and all the people who came come up afterwards emulate what they had seen before but you are photographing in a time time where it was kinda like loose in free and when it came to you making your photographs in terms of you being able to make the photographs you wanted rather than having to fight fight a young rapper trying to be like whoever he was not only self after. Can you tell me about the process of creating unique injuries during the time well. I think it wasn't with the it was independent record companies i wasn't i was dealing with at rap. A lot records a director of that but i really had loose. I mean it like he was saying. It was very loose whatever i wanted to do they like was like go ahead and do it. I shot nothing. Ninety percent of the work is shot in black and white all of it is portraiture and when i flicked back and look at those images. It wasn't really think about this. I didn't go to school for photography. It was about what i saw. What i fail. I think i've always had an interest in the black males because i would engage with all of them not knowing that they were part of the culture where they were you know selling you know the selling and then part of me being around the gun culture. I was really into wi with them and asking them questions. Why are you all here at the house why you have all these guns those real guns and they really looked at me in surprise like you're really a white girl in a black body really don't don't you really don't understand but they allow me an and they talk to me like i don't wanna do this. You know they felt that they didn't have any other the choice but think about this back in that time didn't go to school didn't understand about concepts but i was asking those questions than when i was i was photographing. There is why you want to be a rapper. Why the guns why the drugs why of all of that you know and it was like it is a catch twenty two. I had to feed my family the damn if you do damned if you've done so when you're making these these photographs there weren't that were they a lot of photographers around to doing the same thing that you were and what i can scale up on in houston before for i started with rap a lot records. They had another photographer and what they were doing was just taking images clutching everything together in houston okay and i wasn't. I wasn't doing that. I it i guess it was i was so in tune to portraiture and photographing the photographic laughing black males. That's how i saw everything like i give you an example scarface they all i couldn't understand and that was my naively vity is why is it that they always want to photograph on the outside in the neighborhoods in looking that way. I didn't never i. I was like we gotta to do something else. This is a my mind so what happened. One day i had this idea and i talked to which name is brad which is scarface and told oh him that i listened to his music and he always talk about death and i sit is it was just really a sense of sadness and i told him him that i wanted to come over to his house and i wanted to photograph him in in natural light with the window like coming through him right. He was so excited about that. It wasn't on the outside like they basically was doing in the communities patchett which was the <hes> the <hes> graphic designer at the time. It rap a lot records. Call me and said don't do that. As virgin records virgin records was underneath that they were underneath that label cysts no. We're having the creative directors come to houston. Don't do anything and me being naive eve again. I call scarface and said look they don't want me to do this. I'm not coming over but thinking back on. I should have just took those photographs anyway but i didn't do it so we were outside in the streets again photograph him in the streets and the neighborhood so i i think i always had that unconsciously so so but didn't really know how to what is the one i say process it at the time photographing not realizing what i was doing lineup time with the exhibit and i got the book contact high which sort of a history of hip hop photography going back a way back in the day until now and and one of the things that really struck me about that so much of that photography was done by people who were part of the community that they weren't sort of outsider sort of coming in to you know photograph these these hip hop artists these rappers <hes> oftentimes it was you know the kids who weren't wrapping themselves but they had camera they they had film and they would just start shooting and there's an intimacy to those images that doesn't seem as contrived and as controlled as as so much of the imagery now when you were looking at other people's work during that same time period we you guys sort of checking out each other's work doc driving influence or was once working sort of in their own respective bubble from me. I think we were all working on <hes> perspective bubble because i i wasn't looking at i didn't know about really photographers anything like that but one thing that i was always looking at you remember when the magazine vibe magazine kazini was out. I love the photography and there i just loved it and i actually called the director of the magazine and wanted it to be a part of it but i never could be a part of it. You know i mean i'm not saying clinton but he never would. He saw the work is like us. Okay you know that kind of i think so. I just kept doing what i was doing but that was my influence of looking at the work but like you were saying earlier when you look at my work and when people look at the work together with all the black and white images they see more than just the rappers they see community with it has more. It's not the flash and you know. All of that is more about the community when people see that work now of my work. I'm just saying my work. You know a lot of your work is black and white was that sort of a purposeful choice especially as the interesting more commercial color work it was supposed to you know remember at that time i was like self taught so working for wrap records and the independent record companies his they wanted black and white promotional photographs so that's why i shot in black and white yes. That's that it wasn't made in thinking about is she shoot this in black and white. Should i shoot this in color. I do have a few images that i haven't shown yet that have been shot in color but not like <unk> set ninety nine percent of the work that i shot back then was in black and white because i was even shooting for promotional you know promotional their bios and they all want black and white imagery comet known for some of your conceptual work and when did that start coming into play when you started that so much doing portraiture for the purposes mrs of promoting these musicians these performance but more in terms of building it from an idea and then seeing it through to to a photograph when did that start playing a role naming photography. I'm a start off with this and then i'm answering your question and in houston when i was photographing the the portraits black and white these promotional promotional photos and an artist friends saw my work. He says you need to be in a show. I didn't know anything about our. I didn't know anything anything about m._f._a.'s. I don't know anything about any of that and i told him i wasn't gonna be any in show and he said i'm going to bring a curator over here. I didn't even have any idea what a curator was. Okay so when a cute when the curator came and he saw these images that i shy he was so blown on away he says i thought you was gonna have some cutesy little fashion and he says i want you in this show so i said okay in so when i accepted that and keep in mind never went to art school or anything like that i went and got shoe boxes on the whole concept for that was i wanted to get shoe boxes from nike because you know when it came to the n._f._l. And all of that that was just really hot right so i took those shoe boxes and spray painted him on the black on the outside an insight and had those images in the <hes> shoe boxes and that's how they were hung up now. Don't you think that was conserved. Show and i didn't even realize i knew what i was doing. At the time people would have to take a look in a hole in the shoebox. The photograph is no you know just open up the take the lid off the shoebox soviet black on the outside of the insight and i place i think they were about five oh by seven images this sizes so you as a viewer and i didn't realize that time you had to really get close to those images to look at him look into is looking through view. I didn't realize that i was doing that and when the curator when they had the opening the show. I wasn't gonna go any call me any says you need to get down here. I said no i do not. I said a pitches speaks for itself. Why do i have to come. He says sheila pleads so i came and when i came there were people at the door and frighten me and they wanted to talk to me about the work and one of the images it just that that you've seen what class see where my last frame on the row. I didn't know what to do. Classy had a gun. I told them the pointed at me and he said do you wanna point is gonna do as point that gun at me and that was the photograph and i blurred how you see the barrel of the gun an and people wanna. I'm going back to the exhibit. People wanted to ask me. Did he have a bullet in the gun and i said yeah well. I didn't think about asking okay. I just wanted this shot. 'em from their people told me that i was a gonna be a star star in the art world. I didn't know what all that met. You have women that. I was in a group show. Three other women had their m._f._a.'s. I didn't know nothing about any any of that. I left houston with my then. My now husband boyfriend we hidden after california. Okay i think about all this art stuff but my aren't we got to santa fe my aunt tests and we came to atlanta and that's when my father was looking at my work mark and says you need to go to school. This is something about this photography light and that's where i learned about <unk> how to see how to be conceptual with the work and that's where it all started because believe it or not when i had my show i i didn't know how to talk about work. I was like these approaches. The rappers okay but now reflecting back on it and i really didn't want to show this work because a lot of it was blackmails with the gun culture and i'm very protective of that because how others see us i didn't want it to be the same old thing the image of the stereotypes of a black male criminals though you know that kind of thing now i feel more comfortable now bringing network out which i never really showed the were and i'm babe. I'm understanding how to conceptualize it and talk about it. Now your personal projects in suburbia which is really fascinating. I would love to see more more of that work. <hes> tell me about when that sort of came into play where you still studying your m._f._a. Was the become up uh afterwards. How did this project come to mind right. After grad graduated in two thousand and three i've always was fascinated when i came into atlanta to go into the urban neighborhoods because i did a body of work call coming home and it was in the urban communities shooting the landscape in black and white so so when i got out of grad school i decided the point my camera to suburbia because at that time in the art world and everybody was talking about suburbia and when the all the images that you see of african americans is in urban america and i got tired of looking at those images already know what that is show me something else okay so i decided to because you have a large community and atlanta where you have a large african american community that lives in suburbia so that's how i came up with the concept of suburbia because i wanted to talk about the invisibility of african americans arkansas lit in suburbia even though we see that african americans are progressing and we see that on t._v. but we never stood still in really really look about their environment so that's how i came up with the suburbia and called it suburbia and that's when in two thousand thousands six it was called back then the center fe prize photography. I think it's called center now. In santa fe new mexico i want <hes> i became national national and i won <hes> this war i was so excited and when i got there i had to still have publishers curator's consultants consultants to look at the work and the majority of them when they looked at the work and i don't know why i was so stunned. They didn't get it because they they said that. I didn't have enough signifies in the work to show that these were black home and baffled me because we're in the twenty first century and it showed me how how a stereotype in one's consciousness is still there even though you showing them reality is like this look like my home why oh i didn't call it black suburbia. I have heard of suburbia. This is all of this stuff that was coming at me and me as an artist. I happen to be black and i'm calling it suburbia arabia. I've been projected on because they wanted to identify with blackness whatever the signifies that they wanted to see when you mean signifier the fires. What do you think they meant what did they. What were they expecting this. You're wanting to see him photographed well. I asked this publisher that looked at the work because he said he didn't see anything anna china and ice. He's cut he says i grew up in the air of martin luther king. He says you just don't have enough signifies as well. What is it that you wanna see and he looked at me so i met a job in sep fried chicken collard greens and watermelon quiet say anything so i never did get it. They say that don't look like my home. That was the whole point of this show universal commonality amongst all of us yeah. What are the people in the home that you have people that you knew or did you. How did you find this subject matter for that series. It was very hard because when it comes i'm still us. We're very protective about our image. So it was a friend of mine that lived in suburbia and at first it was like no no you can't do you know no no i said look. I'm not showing you so. They don't know who home spe- <hes> these these are gonna go home and clean up. I'm like no don't do do that so that's how it started and then a friend saw the images and then it all started coming together. They allowed me to come in and even though i didn't you might see bodies in is kind of subdued bodies and the work of of black bodies in the work and you really don't see their faces and what i wanted this a major award a lot of them says well. You could've photograph me you know photograph but that was the whole purpose of the work. The show the invisibility ability of the african americans and he has people move of in class. It becomes a much more difficult to get to gain access to long surprising people who who'll have nothing or virtually nothing comparison to even middle class community uh-huh it's amazing how people just opened up their homes and it's like welcomed. You can autograph whatever you want and songs you providing you know degree of respect and interaction you know but when it comes to people in the middle class or especially upper class nice man. It's really hard to get that access in said they're very protective very suspicious and they used to be in control and i think that's a big part of it. I think it's a a big reason why there's so much resistance because they are where they are because they've been able to have some control over the dynamics of their life and having of its aquifer come in d. documented where they don't have that power is threatening to avert a variety of different degrees. It's really kind of interesting that that the work explores lors that even though it's in this case it's focusing on african americans. It's still that that the whole idea of being protective and also so being wary about who gets to see inside. You know what i'm saying right because right after the when i won this award my mind is always going. I wanted to start photographing photographing when they go like african americans when they go to parties and all of this stuff i couldn't do it. They went to do it so i never could get access to do now. When do it wrap our trap music no problem but i have not been able to do that yet. What do you want to the voice that introduces the episode at the top of the show. Send us an audio clip that you can record on your phone tablet or computer simply say your name where you're from and this is the candid frame say at least twice and give us a few seconds of silence so that we can clean up the audio wants done e mail it to info at ganden frame dot com and make sure include your link to your website or instagram feet help the candid frame to continue bring you great conversations with some of the world's best photographers you can do this by supporting our patriae torreon effort by committing as little as five dollars or more a month when you do this you not only help us to meet the cost of production but provide us at the time and resources. We need to bring you conversations. You won't hear anywhere else. Sign up today by visiting patriot dot com forward slash the candid frame. Thank you so talk to me about in europe most recent book which is nineteen sixty now and tell us about how that project began because it's an amazing powerful body of work. That's it's been taking a lot of your time over the past several years so how did how did it all begin well actually as an artist as i'm always always thinking and i'm always looking at pop culture and that's what drives my work to be honest with you and right after suburbia where i started on a body of work <hes> call young americans didn't know i was going to name it that at the time but i was thinking about young people because that was m between the time when obama which was he wasn't a president yeah was thinking about running people always say i perceived it as being negative about the the the next generation which is the millenniums as like the only thing that they're really interested and is the technology branding and money and all of that. They have no interest in politics so that piqued my curiosity and i'm like well. I'm always thinking about myself when i was young and i sit. You know what there's a lot of things that i was interested when i was young but the older people would just is laughing would say no no no so i said i wanna do a portrait. A body of work of portraiture again and i wanna photograph young people in at the time the atmosphere with the politics i started looking at that with young people in it and i didn't know what i was going to do and how is going to take did these photographs without woke up one morning in my dreams that you're gonna take a pitcher them with the flag. That's how it all started and i said i will. Oh not tell them what to do with the flag. I'm going to ask them one question. What does it mean to be an american in the twenty first century so that body works started in two thousand and six and i think our photograph to young people in my only criteria was they had to be eighteen to twenty five. Why eighteen scene is when the time when you start your out of your parents home you know either you go into college or whatever you're doing and they're kind of independent from their parents to a certain extent and i wanted to know what their thoughts was and i asked them this. How do you see yourself with this. American flag and let's talk about america and that's august started and when did segue into the work that you were doing in terms of black lives matter movement and <hes> oh yeah because i kind of got off at start talking about that that ashley connected with black lives matter because in two thousand and thirteen before before then <hes> what young america's had show my first solo show at the high museum here in atlanta and then two or three years later i started weep pacing the young americans out in the communities and i love that because i feel that my were really connects with the masses of the people because when you think about museums museums and galleries there's only a certain group of people that elitist another groups that go to this to to museums is not the masses of the people. They're trying the change that now so when i started doing the wheat pace i actually i loved it and two thousand and thirteen kvant martin happen and i started thinking about young people again on life. Wow i says i was thinking about the young people in the civil rights rights movement so i went and start talking to them about the movement because of what happened the trayvon martin and police brutality and these different is the same thing back back in the sixties but it's just a different signifier so i started talking to the elders started photographing porteous vam i started weep deep pacing them on walls freedom writers and unknown civil rights leaders that we never heard of i learnt so much from them and when the shootings continue and continue i felt that i needed to go to the ground so i went from atlanta to ferguson to baltimore to washington to baton rouge and i as an artist as a woman and an as a black person i felt that i needed to start looking at our own stories because far too long we have been looking at us through the eyes of the colonizer and that's how we have learned of ourselves so i'm kinda claiming are narrative not reclaiming it because we didn't know it not necessarily so climbing are narratives intas. It's such a big issue to address especially visually clear idea about how you wanted to tackle it or did reveal itself as you produced work revealed itself when it stopped in two thousand and sixteen because from two thousand and thirteen eighteen to two thousand and sixteen i was so driven. I didn't really understand how emotional i was. I was lecturing exhibiting and shooting on the ground on planes off planes from two thousand. I should really start in two thousand fourteen to sixteen eighteen and when it stopped when a lot of the protests and wasn't gone on that's when it started coming together to me. I didn't realize that i i was producing all of this work like this. I was shooting portraiture studio of the elders portraiture of the young people that were in the movement now now and protests images and shooting video all at the same time so when i got approached by chronicle books to do book and i had together all this stuff together then i was like wow i i couldn't believe that i did this work and i started really start conceptually looking at the work and what i was doing because when i was out on the ground i purposely shot in black and white. I purposely purposely shop. Ninety percent of the work would a portrait lands okay and i shot square because i the workers comp nineteen sixteen sixteen now and i'm playing on what the young people in the sixties were doing when it came to human rights like it's the same same thing that the young people are experiencing in a different signify the same thing that's why it's called hashtag nineteen sixty now one of your more powerful for pictures of the mothers of the movement which is modeled after famous photograph made by richard avedon civil rights workers in atlanta. Tell us about that the image because it is a powerful image but i know it also was a very difficult one to pull off yeah last year <hes> i was approach coach along with nine other artists to do murals in atlanta for the upcoming up in february of this year and what it was it was part of the n._f._l. Because a land to they had what is it. What do you call that. I'm not real good with sports. Did they have the super bowl in atlanta in jan. Was it in january or february but anyway it was the first i part of <hes> this quarter but i was approaching last year about this and i did not realize because the organization didn't say it was part of the n._f._l. Now they just asked which you like to maryland. I love doing murals. I love museums galleries but i love murals okay so i agree to do it and i did. I did not realize until they asked me to come to the press conference that it was part of the host committee of the n._f._l. The mayor in the art organization where they partnered together and the theme was social justice and i feel a certain kind of way about it because i've been shooting black lives matter. I was very upset when they flip the narrative when it came to colon cabinet and i really didn't want to have no part of the n._f._l. N._f._l. but what happened was my sister and other people talk to me and they sit sheila. You're the perfect person to do this because we know that you're going to do a protest within that so i had to think about it and i said okay. I'll do it but at the time. I didn't know what i was gonna do but i felt that i needed to take another level. I don't need to show protests images so i i guess i was on the internet and i can't remember if i was has been looking at <hes> julian bond an iconic civil rights leader in atlanta georgia that was the leader of snick in atlanta that student nonviolent nonviolent coordinating committee but actually i saw his image but one of the photographers that i really looked at a a lot when i was in grad school was rich in aberdeen an iconic photographer in the twenty first century and i love his portraiture because does he shot individuals up against a white background so he took them out of their environment and you can really look at that person. I was so amazed with his work. So when i saw this image of julian bond that was taken in one thousand nine hundred sixty three by richard avidan n vine in city in atlanta where you had some of the civil rights leader living at that time like martin luther king julian bond and their children and when i saw that image it was amazing richard avedon came down photographed and vine city in one thousand nine hundred sixty three julian bon on holding his daughter phyllis she was nine months you so and vine city with the snick students behind him. I thought that was a very powerful awful image empha- julian bond to hold his daughter. I thought about the mothers and i said i'm gonna bring the mothers here. I'm going to recreate that that same image in vine city with the mothers and totality doesn't look exactly alike that but the concept came from there eh and the three women that were from outta town is gwendolyn car the <hes>. I can't breath he. I can't even think of his name right now. I can't believe he is the one smother the came down. In the tamir. Rice mother came down the young boy that got shot up playing with a toy gun in ohio and then oscar grant's mother from oakland which happened in two thousand and nine they just named a street name after us the asca grant after him and they have a big mirror in oakland california so oh i brought those three women down along with mothers who <hes> whose children have fallen to police brutality here and i also included dr rosalyn pope who went to spelman college in nineteen sixty stay in she authored appeal of human rights and she was part of the atlanta a student movement and what i really wanted to kinda show in this work was about self care and talk about trauma and how these mothers have moved on so i was shown a photograph back then of julian bond taken by richard avedon and then mike image but i had the hardest time to get that image up from blacks and whites in blew me away because this is the home home of the civil rights movement. I had to in order for me to get the building. A collective mind from florida was able to to get the building for me. I couldn't get anybody to get me to get a building. They said it was it was too political. When you speak the truth people think you're radical article you you're too political. I'm just picking the two. I'm trying to move forward. How can we progress okay. I had to hire installers dollars. Even though i was the artist i became the project man. I hired installers. I was going off on everybody. The last has two weeks. I was a warrior and is amazing. I got it up and is off a one ninety trinity street and i have a guerrilla a street curator that cure rates my work out in the streets and we went out looking and she said she would be good if we put it right around the corner under from the police station courthouse and city council innocent the mess in the middle of all of that this all of this work you just mentioned the word trauma so all of this work is really rooted deeply in an incredible amount of pain of loss and in the case of the mothers of sort not reinventing themselves after the loss of their children but for you your mother so i'm sure that being in the midst of that because as you said you were traveling all over the country in in visiting situations where the feelings and the loss was just really ripe and so ah i know to some degree you probably used the photography as the means of being able to sort of go through it emotionally and be able to sit up not get overwhelmed by it but i'd like you to sort of speak about the self care that you needed to do just to make sure that you didn't hit a wall and burn out prematurely yeah in two thousand and sixteen when everything kind of stopped with a lot of you know in between two thousand and thirteen thousand sixty it was constantly everybody it was out in the streets and when that kind of subside a little bit i myself said oh my god i am emotionally emotional and i need self care will how're you gonna deal with the self care okay and i needed to take a break from it but but what happens with me and i think through my photography deaths how i kinda deal with it and with the mothers because what i learnt so much which with the mothers and i wasn't even thinking about this there is trauma with the mothers with with other mothers because some of the mothers upset set with the other mothers because some of them are getting more attention than some of the other ones and they will really go off on about like what makes you some important than mine in that make me undestand from when our ancestors were brought over here to the civil rights movement to the black power movement to i look at hip hop was the voice of sand and that was a movement up until now. Can you understand understand all that trauma as the race of people continually have to deal with and how we internalize it. We don't talk about mental illness on this in our communities because a lot of that has something to do with it too. We've been we have. We've born into of movement mint. Whether we're conscious of it or not whether we want to do what not and i just think that are is like is it w d boyce and not hammer who was was the poet or something we wear the two phase we just we're resilient people but we don't really know how to do self care with us so on learning right now to be able to do that and what helped me out. A lot is being around the mothers because even though i'm a photographer for and i think in journalism is like you don't need to be a participant at cry. We were crying. We laughed and it felt so good and this wasn't in about me as an artist or photographer is bigger than me. I'm just being moved by the spirit. It seems to be one of the reasons why you like getting your work. Outside of the galleries you talked about the wheat pasting in about about the murals is that you get you provide an opportunity for the very people that you photographed graf to see themselves because oftentimes when those communities are photographed. They never really get to see the work. Even age of digital they may see the back of the camera but they rarely get to see the book or go to the galleries to see <hes> see the work exhibited talk to me about that. Why is it so important for you. Why do you want to make sure that your work gets get seen by the very people that you're using as as the material for your for your if i could say this. This is very painful for our community really look back and look at this. We don't really want to deal with it and i think that eh is v. It's like the movie. How do they see us. It was even though i've been on the ground. I've seen a lot of stuff. It was difficult for me to watch this and i said sheila you have to watch it as very painful and i think once we as a community andy can face this and deal with it. Maybe we could move forward with it and maybe the stories that have been told by us. Versus assists the other than telling stories for decades. Maybe we can have a better understanding even though we know about the subject matter attic for example able d._n._a. Right she did an excellent job of telling that story. She not not only make you see it. She makes you feel it and with my imagery i want to not just dec- i want you to fill it and maybe then we can move forward with it. Okay as difficult as it is. When my last question that i ask each guest is i asked them to recommend another photographer for listeners to discover and explore and it can be anyone someone you've long admired or someone recently discovered words who won photographer being photographer think about that. I'm thinking about some younger photographers gophers. You know i like roy my mike mccoy. I really wanna think about women. Does it have to be a photographer ghafur. Could it be filmmaker like duva nee. I mean even those she's out there. Everybody knows her. She speaks to me through to her moving images. She makes me feel i mean this what she did is very powerful is very hurtful but is very powerful and it showed me how even though the title of it is how they see us for me is really about. How do we see us and that's what i think about when i see her work so i really commend her for what she has done and what it has done. Done is the young people through their technology through twitter and instagram. They shut and a lotta people down that had something to do do with to do with the prosecutor. She's an along or at columbia now and so that's the power that i think that ah moving forward with the next generation it gives them the power like i could go out and tell these stories okay and that's what she has stat well. Thank you for that and thank you for your time and it was a real joy to consensus talk with you again. Thank you for having me. It was my pleasure <music>. Thanks to sheila for sharing your time and story with us. You can find out more about her under work by visiting sheila pre bright dot com and at the end of the month i'm going to be in vancouver canada teaching a weekend workshop with fellow long street photographer olaf sta check out the video where we discussed the workshop and sign up soon as there are few spots available find out more by visiting the website and and visual experience dot com the here and see me talk about my personal photographic process visit the youtube channel where offer comments comments on photography submitted by listeners who contribute to the candidate frame flicker pull check out the t._c._i. 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You'll find the links were both in the show notes and the website and if you wanna easily access every episode of the candidate frame download the kendra frame <music> app is available for both apple and android and it's free and if you scroll down on the app you'll find a free excerpt of my book that you can download. We also also have an alexa app so if you have one of those smart devices download the skill and listen to the show that way the cannon frames audio engineer is martin taylor where you can find at the other martin taylor dot com the show senior producers in the parker and our music is from kevin mccloud who's royalty free music and we found adding compact dot com and this is a body and x. and this is the candidate for him <hes> <music>.