Sublime. Mystical. Surreal. These are just a few words that jump into my mind when I look at the photographic works of Natasha Joffer. Through her lens she takes us on a visual journey deep into the beauty of our everyday lives. It’s like stepping into another world that is living amongst the little things that we tend to walk right past without ever even noticing. Droplets of morning dew clinging to a plumeria leaf. A bee gathering nectar. A dragonfly hovering weightlessly above delicate blooms. The pooled rain in a palm frond harboring the reflection of the sunset. A snail peeking out of its shell while safely perched in the deep folds of lush foliage.
Natasha’s eye for the tiniest of detail is prevalent throughout her portfolio. She brings us ever closer to a deeper sense of connection with the beauty that is all around us. “As I wander with my camera, I have increasingly been drawn to those details…mindful of capturing what already exists and transforming seemingly insignificant subjects of our everyday lives by isolating them, changing the perspective, and presenting them as complete images unto themselves.”
Largely self-taught, Natasha is certainly no stranger to photography in all its aspects. She worked as an in-house artist for D & S Color for 15 years. During that time, she became a master at retouching photos, including those of several celebrities. One photo of Elvis was brought into the lab under the watchful eye of security guards, who remained present through the entire process. That photo now hangs in the Country Music Hall of Fame. Over the years she has never wandered far from her love of photography but like many of us, life took her on a different path. Life has a strange way of looping back around on itself and our passions, so now at the age of 46 she is finally showing her work publicly for the very first time.
“Sunshine State of Mind” will premiere at the Palmetto Art Center on September 8. Natasha’s work will be on display along with the serigraphs of Linda Molto and the Florida landscape paintings of the Florida Highwaymen on display in the adjoining galleries. “It’s truly an honor to be showing alongside such amazing talent.” Natasha told me when I asked how it felt to be finally showing her work. “I’m thrilled to have this opportunity to express myself. I love that I can take a photograph and express it as my own. Hopefully in the long run creating an image that inspires me and others. Photography is a lot about being in the right place at the right time. You can sometimes engineer the image and sometimes it just happens. It’s a way to communicate with individuals, evoke an emotion and tell a story. I’m at the right time to do this and my boyfriend John has inspired me beyond words to do more with my photography. I also couldn’t ask for a better venue, Palmetto Art Center is a perfect fit for me to showcase my first exhibit. I hope I come across giving others inspiration to take another look around them and see our incredible palette of natural beauty we surround ourselves with.”
On display in the East Gallery will be 15 original works by the Florida Highwaymen, a group of twenty-six African-American artists whose works from the early 50’s through the 1980’s have become highly collectible. Included in the collection is Mary Ann Carroll, the lone woman in this highly-collectible group of artists. Also on display in the East Gallery you will find the works of my friend and Serigraph master Linda Molto. Over two dozen signed, limited edition prints will be available for purchase, including a few vintage serigraphs from the 1980’s, which just happen to be some of my favorites.
Join me and Natasha for the opening reception for “Sunshine State of Mind” on Friday September 8 from 5-8 pm at the Palmetto Art Center, located at 907 5th Street West in Palmetto, FL. If you can’t make it Friday night, The exhibit will be on display on Saturday September 9 from 11am-1pm, and on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays from noon to 2 pm, as well as by appointment through the month of September.
For more information on the Palmetto Art Center’s exhibits, classes and other upcoming events, please visit their website at www.palmettoartcenter.com. You can also follow them on FaceBook at Palmetto Art Center.
Photo Credits: Natasha Joffer