On this site, you will see a broad view of the kind of work I have created during my career. From art school, to museum photographer, to fine artist, to advertising, to weddings. I insist on wearing many creative hats.
I first started making video portraits for my son. His 2nd birthday was approaching and I wanted to give him something special. Toys and treats are pretty forgettable. I wanted something meaningful that would become more valuable over time. So I made a short film of him playing with his dad on the beach--one of his very favorite things to do. We watch it together all the time. He squeals and laughs when he sees himself on the screen and I sit next to him teary-eyed wondering how he is growing up so fast!
What does a moving image do that a photo cannot? It can capture a moment and stretch it over space and time, making the captured memory come alive vividly. Imagine having a short film like the ones below of your parents when they were young or of your grandparents. You would see their expressions change, their mannerisms emerge, even the way they walk. Now imagine your children and grandchildren watching a video like this of you. Wouldn't that be amazing!
After the cake is eaten and the dances are danced, your photographs become the everlasting visual story of your wedding day. Investing in a professional photographer is not about fancy equipment, it's about experience. I have been photographing weddings since 2005 and feel like I've seen it all. I've worked on many weddings that have been several hours behind schedule, two that started pouring rain in the middle of their ceremonies, one with completely frozen flowers, one missing tuxedo and several unpredictable relatives. Through everything unexpected that can happen during such a well-planned day, I am your calm and experienced photographer that creates a beautiful visual story of a wonderfully important day.
To serve my clients the best that I can, I only take on 5 weddings a year. I book up fast, so contact me today.
The Hankersons (2012-ongoing) is a portrait series that connects the relatively small number of people who share my last name to the shared history of slaveholders and slaves spanning 260 years. Currently, there are fewer than three thousand people with the name Hankerson, all of whom live in the United States, while fewer than ten percent of whom identify as white. Through this project-in-progress, I am following the direct line to the Hankerson ancestors, with the aim of visually joining a fractured family narrative that has been stolen, lost or misremembered. The result is a deconstructed family of individual portraits that are reconstructed to mirror a defining national experience.
Dark Mondays (2011) explores the Minneapolis Institute of Art in a state of quiet that the public will never see—the museum with its lights off. Areas that are not intended to be highlighted are illuminated and artworks that are meant to be regarded are masked in shadow. A psychic parallax occurs between the intended view of the museum and a the museum in the dark.
Heads of the Hills (2014)
A bust of each of the forty-four U.S. presidents, weighing as much as twenty-four tons and standing as tall as twenty feet resides among the pine trees in the Black Hills in South Dakota. Presidents Park opened to the public in 2003, pridefully celebrating the United States’ legacy, but closed indefinitely in 2010, due to diminished tourism in a struggling economy. The presidents’ busts are set against a land that was, according to the 1981 US Supreme Court ruling in the United States v. Sioux Nation of Indians, taken illegally from the Lakota/Sioux peoples. The disputed land in the Black Hills is sacred to Lakotas, Cheyennes, Arapahos, Kiowas and Kiowa-Apaches.
By photographing at night, the spectacle of the park is not only reinforced, but augmented. A psychic parallax occurs between the originally intended view of the of the park and a current view of the park at night--a closed park that is no longer accessible to the public. In the dark, the figures appear grotesque, in some cases unidentifiable. But for now, in this exhibit within an exhibit, the lonely decaying figures remain residents of the hills.
Larry Sultan and Mike Mandel’s book Evidence is very influential in my work. It wasn’t until I was introduced to Evidence as an undergrad, that I thought about the how the sequencing of images can transform the meaning of a body of work. ‘Twas Only a Balloon is comprised of materials found in the public domain: a poem by Emily Dickinson published in 1863 and images from the Library of Congress acquired by searching the word “balloon” in their online database. The balloon in Dickinson’s poem is a metaphor for how society changes its view of a woman’s value as she ages.
In the first stanza, an admiring crowd gazes upon the soaring balloon. In the following stanzas, the balloon slowly descends toward its eventual death while the increasingly disinterested crowd looks away. Dickinson ends her poem “‘Twas only a Balloon” as if to say there is no reason for sadness as the crowd did not lose anything of value. The images of various balloons (party balloons, parade balloons, hotair balloons, military balloons and weather balloons) in their sequencing and proximity to the poem’s five stanzas are transformed into a narrative about multiple roles played by women and their perceived value within society.
The visual narrative also evokes the film The Red Balloon (1956) by Albert Lamorisse, starring an admired anthropomorphized balloon that expires at the end of the story.
All images and text are in the Public Domain.
You’ve seen Balloons set — Haven’t You?
written by Emily Dickinson, 1863.
All images courtesy of
Prints & Photographs Division, Library of Congress.