I have a profound hearing loss, and have worn hearing aids since I was in the second grade. This hearing loss is due to nerve damage, though I do not know the exact circumstances. My hearing loss has been a part of who I am since early childhood.
I am quite certain that there is a direct relationship between my hearing loss and my being an artist that works in the medium of photography, a discipline that requires intense looking and seeing. Certainly I see a lot more than I hear, and I take in a lot more information through my eyes than I do with my ears. As a consequence I haveof necessityhigh visual acuity; I am able to discern situations from people’s gestures and physical behaviors that often fill in the gaps of what I am missing in an auditory sense.
From this long history of looking closely at people I have developed a very high ability to read people emotionally and psychologically from their facial gesture as well as their physical gesture. These are the fundamental tools that I work with in making my portraits. In my photographs I work to make an emotionally and psychologically resonant representation of the human subject, one that brings a momentary sense of the interior person to the surface.
Since 1993 this work has been made primarily with young people as the subject, since I also think that there are a set of stereotypical assumptions that cling to young people. In my work I try to create a space for young people to reveal themselves as the complex human beings that they are.