Coexisting with Identity

“I used to think of [it as] having a diseased, broken brain. That was when I was in eighth grade… I thought everyone else was normal and I was the one who needed to be fixed. In fact, back in the ’08 election, when I wanted Hillary, it was only because she wanted to fund a cure for autism at the time and I really wanted a cure. In high school, I didn’t care. Ninth and tenth grade were both so awesome that it didn’t matter to me what neurology I bore. Though, later when I started to lose friends for whatever reason, I felt that too familiar sense of isolation. Then, I fell upon the concept of ‘autism rights’ and ‘neurodiversity’. At first it was a crutch. The common victimhood/entitlement mentality that sweeps our culture today is something that came and went for me. It soon became a meaningful cause, and I no longer wanted a cure. Instead of resisting the identity, coexisting with it and embracing its strengths and working through the weaknesses was the path to success.”

Thirst

A young girl journeys to one of the only sources of clean water in her small mountain village. I felt very lucky to have gotten this shot. After hiking down the side of a mountain to get to one of the only sources of fresh water in the area, there was already a small group of women there, some doing laundry some collecting water. After waiting about twenty minutes, this beautiful little girl wandered up to the water source. This is one of the most moving photographs I have shot to date, and it was a moment I won’t forget any time soon.

The Smile

A village elder pauses to smile after performing an oral story about the history of her people. Of all the people in the room she was the most full of energy, of life, and of grace. Her performance was thoroughly captivating, and though it was in another language, she had a way of making you feel, and somehow understand, what she was saying. All eyes were on her, the other village elders, all the volunteers, and some stray school children waiting beneath the open windows. I didn’t have to say much to get this picture, just slightly lift my camera and she struck her pose, and I am forever grateful I got to meet her.

Boy at Play

One of the many children that I had the pleasure of meeting while staying in La Vallée. Despite this more serious look of concentration, he was a very happy and lighthearted boy, always doing his best to make everyone around him smile. It was fun to watch him play with the other children and the volunteers. He was such a pleasure to be around and I am glad I got to know this bright young man a bit.

An Introduction

I guess it is time for an introduction post. Hi and welcome to my website/blog. My name is Taylor, I am 21 years old and a native of the Pacific North West. I am a gypsy at heart so I am on the move as much as possible. There is so much of the world and I feel like I have seen very little of it. As long as I can remember I have always had a camera in my hand. I love taking pictures of just about anything – from pictures around my house of my cat and many Game of Thrones memorabilia, to children in Haiti and elephants in Cambodia. Photography, like all other forms of art, has been a way for me to help express how I feel and showcase my life experiences. I have always felt that photography is one of the most powerful ways to tell a story. Two of my favorite contemporary photographers include Lynsey Addario and Aaron Huey – if you don’t know them, Google them right now! They are amazing and you will not be disappointed.

While this website is mostly going to be a portfolio of my work, I will occasionally use it as a blog as well – hopefully that will encourage me to try and post more photos. I believe all art should be shared and that is my intent with this site. If you happen to be at all interested in my story and/or why and how I take the pictures I do you can check out my blogs:

http://thereliesfreedom.com/ (dedicated to fulfilling my bucket list and trying to be the best version of me I can be)

&

http://diaryofavagabond.com/ (dedicated to my travels, so I can remember all the places I have been).

I hope you enjoy my website and find some inspiration in my art.

– Taylor