Sometimes you enter a contest and share company in a collection of memories. Thanks to the Santa Fe PHotographic Workshops for selecting my image for their collection FAMILY 1st Photo contest. Images came from 25 countries, and the contest inspired 702 photographers to enter 2544 images. I grew up looking at the images in book The Family of Man since before I could walk or talk but I remember I could as a baby feel those Family moments. Tender. Funny. Sad. Traumatic. Magical. I am grateful for the opportunity to share what I've come to love in people. Thank you to todas las familias, all the family, who've shared this amazing journey of life with me.
For me this portrait, of the Mennonite sisters and the beautiful quilts they make, is a much needed representation of the Mexican people connected to their culture and the landscape that has been portrayed primarily as a war zone every day with no end in sight. This moment too is real. It is an interior view within the folds of the sierras and valleys of Mexico's history.
The Mennonites immigrated to Chihuahua from Canada after the revolution. They keep to their traditions from Russia and Germany. They speak an old dialect of German. we can't speak each other's languages. English, or Spanish. Yet there is no need for language when you can feel a smile grow on your face as you take part in shared laughter; this is an example of when there are no lines marring the exuberance of joyful expression from the heart of Chihuahua.
I am reminded of why I want to be a photographer when I remember how I felt when I made the picture and also how it makes me feel remembering that laughter.
Here's to HOPE and more peaceful times on the borderlands. OJALA QUIERE.