The Art of the Personal Project is a crucial element to let potential buyers see how you think creatively on your own.  I am drawn to personal projects that have an interesting vision or that show something I have never seen before.  In this new revised thread, I’ll include a link to each personal project with the artist statement so you can see more of the project. Please note: This thread is not affiliated with any company; I’m just featuring projects that I find.  Please DO NOT send me your work.  I do not take submissions.

Today’s featured artist: Nicole Morgenthau

How did you get into photographing mountain men???

I get asked this all the time. Here is the algorithm…

Realize making a living as an artist is very difficult— go to school to study physical therapy about 4 years ago— realize an artist studying science is much harder than making it as an artist. When I jumped back into the art world I was lost and broke. An ad popped up on social media “Win a workshop with famed photographer Andy Anderson.” I’ve never won anything but entered and got lucky. I was off to Texas. We were all professional photographer in the workshop who knew how to take pictures- Andy pushed us/ me off the high diving board. “Go do what you want, do it from the heart and you’ll make your best work.”

I attended a rendezvous when I was 20, in Montana. This was no accident- I always had romantic visions of living in the 19th century (with the addition of Advil). I’m fascinated by this part of American history, the clothing, hard work it took to survive, simpler way of living, and wanted to tell the stories of those that still call themselves mountain men. I went to Fort Bridger Rendezvous, which was close to my home of Salt Lake City in the fall of 2014. I went for the day, but threw my sleeping bag in the car— just incase. Three days later I returned home and was completely rebooted. I started feeling creative again, started making my best work and started getting real jobs. I plan to make a coffee table book and have the images exhibited.

Sometimes you have to take the long way home.

Mountain Man Rendezvous at Ft Bridger, WY
Scott Olsen aka “Doc Ivory”

To see more of this project, click here.

APE contributor Suzanne Sease currently works as a consultant for photographers and illustrators around the world. She has been involved in the photography and illustration industry since the mid 80s. After establishing the art buying department at The Martin Agency, then working for Kaplan-Thaler, Capital One, Best Buy and numerous smaller agencies and companies, she decided to be a consultant in 1999. She has a new Twitter feed with helpful marketing information because she believes that marketing should be driven by brand and not by specialty.  Follow her at @SuzanneSease.


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