• stephanie wade

The Moment I Knew I Was An Artist

Updated: Sep 9, 2018


To this day I still am drawn to the beauty of old barns (Switzerland 2018)


I was 6 years old, riding in the back of my grandparents car

I remember it vividly. It was a long navy blue Oldsmobile with a dark cloth interior. I was looking out the window on the right side of the car and we were driving down the winding backcountry roads in Wisconsin on a sunny summer day. My parents were born and raised there and my mom, brother, and I were headed to my grandparents house for a summer vacation.


As I sat there, watching the scenery race by like a blurry movie, half listening to my family chatting casually with one another, I became lost in my thoughts, focused on the world outside. Suddenly in the middle of pristine, lush green grass on a rolling hill I saw a grey weathered dilapidated barn. The boards were dark with mold in spots, the roof half tumbled in, entire parts of the side of the barn missing and there were weeds growing up around the bottom rails. In that quick moment, faster than a second, I experienced the beauty in the barn as a jolt of truth in my body. It was clear and strong and immediately followed by the urge to take a picture to capture that image and feeling. I didn't have a camera yet and had never taken a picture before but in my heart, even at the age of 6, somewhere inside of me I knew what a picture should feel like and I experienced it for the first time in that brief moment.


Suddenly in the middle of pristine, lush green grass on a rolling hill, I saw a grey weathered dilapidated barn.

As I got older, I was given a camera and started taking pictures all the time. In fact I won my first photography contest in the 2nd grade with the picture of a bright and colorful hot air balloon in the dessert of Arizona that I called "Full of Hot Air". As I grew over the years, my camera became my solace, my teacher, and my friend. To this day, my photography is still guided by that six year old as she helps me find and allow the "barn moment" in my life - moments when I feel the truth and beauty of an image in my soul that drives me to capture it in a picture.



#photography; #photographer; #art; #becominganartist

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