Robin Elise Maaya
“With one hand in the dishpan, the other in the darkroom..."
- Imogen Cunningham
I am an artist. I am a photographer. I am a woman. I am a painter, a writer, a collector; but mostly, I am a human. It is in the humanity - in the life - around me that beckons me to the camera over and over again. It is the children dancing wild and free, carelessly jumping on trampolines and swimming in shallow creeks that make my heart flutter and crave the moment I release the shutter. I am here Earthside if not only to live, but to tell the stories of strangers, lovers, family and children, and to tell my story.
I find my passion continuously lying in the hands of the children around me; whether they are the children I nanny or kids I meet at the park, I am constantly fascinated by the fearlessness and wisdom that young lives possess. I have recently taken up photographing kids on a 4x5 view camera and that has brought forth an entirely different relationship between me and the camera and the camera and my subjects. There will forever be something special about this wooden beast that calls upon not only children, but myself, to slow down and truly take in the warm embrace that comes over you when you know you got "the one".
If I am not photographing the lives that are ever rotating around me, I am likely photographing myself or creating extended self portraiture to tell my own story. I am a firm believer that a picture really is worth a thousand words and should be used to further express our individual experiences of humanhood.
A dear friend of mine once sent me a letter saying this: "You have a gift...and it's not just talent..it's like you were selected to leave our legacy. The power you have...you can tell your own story, my story, their story....", and that is exactly what I intend to do.