Local photographer returns to Moos Gallery in special exhibit

Local photographer returns to Moos Gallery in special exhibit

Pamela Daum's exhibit The Way I See It will be displayed in Moos Gallery from Jan. 6 – Feb. 19.

Join us at 6:30 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 13, in Moos Gallery to meet the artist at a special reception.

When you walk into a Pamela Daum photography exhibit, you step into an ethereal world, where color is absent but beauty is present in dynamic scenes of the great outdoors. In her various collections of black and white landscape photography, Daum displays ashy and waxen nature scenes that — despite their lack of hue — are anything but drab. There is something unsettling yet striking about a sunset stripped of color, a forest in shades of ash and an achromatic beach scattered with bone-white driftwood. See for yourself in WRA's Moos Gallery from Jan. 6.–Feb 19.

From her vast collection, Daum will display more than 20 photos from her three collections: Reborn in Florida, Life is a Beach and SSDD (Same Scene, Different Day). All images are in black and white and shot with infrared.

"I actually tend to see in black and white," said Daum. "For some reason, black and white resonates with me more."

This is the second time Daum will exhibit her work at Moos Gallery. In 2004, she showcased photography that demonstrated alternative processes, such as Polaroid emulsion lifts and Polaroid manipulations.

"I've been in a lot of galleries, but Moos Gallery remains my favorite," she said. "The light is perfect. The gallery itself is just perfect. I have a warm spot in my heart for this place. And, of course, the WRA campus is amazing!"

Daum is an award-winning photographer with more than 40 years of experience, though her notable talents also include fiction-writing and custom-made jewelry. This year, she received special recognition as a featured artist in the Women in the Arts "Celebrating the Genius of Women."

"This was their inaugural year, and I was tapped among a large group of women internationally," she explained. "I love to support and I embrace any artist — male or female — but I will say that there is a sisterhood among female artists. I feel just blessed to be honored!"

Though she has enjoyed a long and successful career in the arts, it was not the path she originally set out to take. She graduated from Ohio Northern University with a B.A. in business, which she chose because "it was marketable." Taking only the required amount of business courses, she continued her lifelong passion for the arts by packing in as many art and English courses as her schedule would allow.

Upon leaving college, she immediately joined the business world and found work at Fortune 500 companies. For 20 years, she lived a kind of dual life, both as a successful professional in the corporate world and as a part-time writer and photographer. It wasn't until she received a late stage cancer diagnosis that her focus completely changed.

"It was a wake-up call," she said. "It was just time to do something other than what I had been doing for so long, so I fell back on the things that I loved. I had always been photographing and writing outside of the 60-hour work week, but I decided it was time for a change."

Seventeen years later, she works now in a very different kind of atmosphere. Each day, she leaves her house on West Twin Lake in Kent, carrying her Leica, and searches for a new shot for her SSDD collection. For these, she takes three shots of the same scene, each captured at a different moment in the day.

"Some mornings are so spectacular," she said. "I love it when it's foggy and there's mist on the lake. Those are always my favorite scenes to capture because it can change so much in such a short amount of time."

She has greatly enjoyed her career as a writer and an artist, and she particularly cherishes making wonderful connections with those in the art community. This, she says, is something she believes budding artists can look forward to experiencing.

"I think that no matter where you go, there will always be a community that you can turn to for support and they'll always open their arms to you," she said. "The Hudson Society of Artists is a fabulous place to start. They welcome students, and they even offer grants and scholarships. I would definitely encourage young artists to seek out their local art societies."

She also hopes that as student-artists grow older, they keep themselves open to new ideas, particularly in such an evolving industry as photography.

"I received formal training, but I always spent time expanding that," she said. "I never want to stop learning. I think that's what I would say to any artist — open yourself up to change. Particularly if you look at photography and how much it's changed in the last two decades, from film to digital. If I'd fought tooth and nail, because I loved film — if I had closed my mind to any other form — then I wouldn't have had the opportunity to go back to infrared as a digital form. I wouldn't have been able to just welcome all the changes that digital brought."