Florence & Tuscany, 2015
In mid-2015, a dear friend and classmate of mine from Leadership Music, Lydia Hutchinson, told me about a songwriting workshop she was putting together at a villa in Sesto Fiorentino, right outside Florence. It was going to be led by Gretchen Peters, one of my favorite songwriters. She’s an advocate for writing by yourself rather than the typical Nashville co-write, and that was something I wanted to explore. Lydia sent me the itinerary, and the villa and the activities surrounding the workshop looked amazing. I decided I had to do this. The experience proved to be profound in many unanticipated ways.
I was always an avid travel photographer – buildings, landscapes, historical sites, the usual. But, being that this was going to be my first time in Italy, I bought a new, higher quality Sony camera for my trip. I became fascinated with the faces I encountered on the streets and in the cafés, and started photographing them in black and white. Always a fan of film noir, as well as classic B&W street photography, I discovered that those influences were coming out in the photos I was taking. I was surprised that I seemed to be able to capture an emotional moment with my camera, but realized that I had spent my whole life capturing emotional moments through music. I decided that this type of photography was another important form of expression for me, and my photographic journey began.
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