Joanna Rodriguez
Art has always been a big part of my life. Since I was a child I loved anything about art, whether it was painting, drawing, craft; my goal was to create. I studied many forms of art and focused on photography. I fell in love with capturing the moment and communicating eloquent meaning. Things happen and are quickly forgotten. Something as simple as facial expression or a light shining through a window could be very special and captured in a timeless frame.

Technology has made taking a picture very popular and everyone is able to snap shots.
A photograph for me is the work of art. The work of art must be significant, made with intention and be unique, original to me. The frame, the composition, must be selected with purpose, as in any work of art. It may take a long time to set up, to express an idea and a goal for the final product. There might be a story or a special composition to interpret; maybe the moment was waited on for a very long time. Pressing the shutter is only a part of it. An artistic photograph, to me, is not just a ‘picture’; the design of the frame, its composition and the expression of emotion is the goal. Whether it is fine art, fashion or portraiture for me, the image must shine. It must communicate with me as an artist and as the viewer. There must be an inspiration, a vision and an expression. The artist Ken Rockwell said, "Photography is the power of observation, not the application of technology." The vision is the first step and observation must occur for the composition to happen.

My view finder is the canvas and my shutter release is the brush. A photograph is not only technical. A photograph must communicate something. It starts with an idea, concept, and a feeling. For a photograph to be effective, my meaning and message must be perceptible. Ansel Adams said "There is nothing worse than a sharp photograph of a fuzzy idea." The best camera doesn’t make the greatest photograph; it is the photographer’s idea that will make it happen. A memory and a moment can be forgotten, but an image captured will stay there and if it is strong, it will last.

My involvement in art also extends beyond the world of the photographic image. I truly appreciate making three dimensional art and working in mixed media as well. Whether I am working with clay or metal I continue to be an expressive artist. Even with a pencil I let my feelings take over and create dramatic, gestural strokes. The pressure of a pencil becomes visible and the work becomes a profusion of energetic lines and movement.
I appreciate texture and movement, and visible brush strokes. My work is lively and even if frozen in time as photos, it is vivid and suggestive. The goal for my work is to create a frame which captures a moment. It is important to me that the work communicates, expresses a feeling and has a composition which is pleasing or bizarre and original.