Please join me in welcoming Tara Romasanta as today’s Guest Muse. I first “met” Tara in late 2010 in an online photography course that we were both taking. That course offered daily prompts that we would all shoot to and share in a community gallery (come to think of it, that same course is how I met many of my fellow muses, past and present!). Not only do I remember Tara’s work from those days, as it often stood out in the gallery, but I also remember her generosity and kindness in commenting on the work of others. Since that time I have had the pleasure of meeting Tara and spending time with her, most recently on the beach in British Columbia earlier this fall. I admire her dedication to improving her craft in photography and am so often blown away by the work that she’s producing. In this month of gratitude I am grateful for Tara’s friendship and support and, most recently, for the gentle kick in the arse that she gave me early one morning to go and shoot some self portraits on the beach.
Thank you, Tara, for all of that and for sharing your words and your work here today.
I’m convinced a daily photography practice makes me a better person. Maybe even a saner person. Certainly it has trained me to look for light at every turn. Or, in our case, every move.
It just so happens that we move a lot, as in four times in the last five years.
Granted, one of those was just a self-inflicted move around the corner. Other moves have topped my ‘never in a million years would I choose to live here’ list. Las Vegas was one such place. Sure, I can appreciate the infamous Strip’s fine dining and entertainment galore, but it really isn’t my scene.
Or, I didn’t think it was, until my camera taught me to see it and experience it differently. Las Vegas is nothing if not a spectacle. When I arrived in Las Vegas I was focused on the artifice of it all. But through the eyes of my camera, I shifted my focus to the spectacular, and I learned to appreciate Las Vegas more for what it is, less for what it isn’t.
Shooting a 365 means you are constantly seeking photo opportunities. Given I had a baby during the first two weeks of my first 365, many of those had to be of the everyday mundane variety, a daily gratitude practice of seeking to find the beauty around you. But, importantly, that 365 also got me out the door, which is no small feat for a mom of two under twos. In so many ways, shooting 365’s has saved me. It pushed me to do more, so that I could see more and shoot more. I gave myself photo assignments: A Lensbaby tour of the Strip taught me to seek beauty in the cliché.
A goose chase for the wild horses of Nevada, originally merely a “thing to photograph,” became my favorite soothing drive when the boys were under-the-weather and couldn’t be around other people but also couldn’t stand to stay home any longer.
I’d not have twisted the arms of non-tog friends to take a most memorable road trip to Death Valley National Park had it not made its way onto my ‘must photograph before moving’ list.
Just like that, my resistance to living in Las Vegas had evolved into actively seeking out ways to more fully experience it, both in front of and behind the lens. When I said goodbye to Las Vegas last summer, I did so with love in my heart for the place I so thought I’d hate.
I’m winding down my second 365 at the end of this year. I know I’m done with the handcuffs of having to shoot everyday when this one is done. I want to do less shoots with more winners rather than struggle to find a daily winning shot. But my eye has been trained to seek beauty, even in the most unlikely of places, a lesson that cannot be unlearned or unseen, and for that, I will always be grateful.
You can track Tara’s latest whereabouts via Instagram or Twitter (@tarawanders). Her work is also available for license via Stocksy and Offset.
Thank you for the lovely post
introducing Tara’s wonderful work. You mentioned you met Tara during an on-line photography course. Can you recommend some on-line courses?
it just so happens that one of the classes many of us met at is being reprised very soon!
Fab! Thanks for sharing with us! I am a (northern) Nevada girl, but so much of your landscape photos here resignate with me.
it kills me that we were in the same state and didn’t get to meet up. we will. at some point. i know it. 🙂
Such beautiful work. Thank you so much for sharing your inspiration with us.
thank you so much, glad you enjoyed it. 🙂
beautiful post tara–both words and photos. love to see you here with us at mortal muses!!
thank you, and thank you for having me!
Wow I could relate to this since ive been moving too. And love these shots, Tara!
i’ve loved seeing all the shots of your transition, cara. xoxo
Love this Tara! beautifully written and displayed
thank you mary xoxo
The mere mention of Las Vegas used to leave a sour taste in my mouth. That was until I experienced it through the lens of my camera on a photo walk with you a few years ago. It’s amazing how seeking beauty in the places we find ourselves can change our perspective. I’ve loved watching you and your photography grow. Thank you for sharing.
that was a lovely day, we need to go out shooting again soon, michela!
I love seeing your images and reading the words that go along with them. I, too, have loved watching your photography grow. You have a unique and beautiful photographic voice and I look forward to seeing more of your winning shots.
thank you so much angie 🙂
The fact that you are on the tail end of your second 365 is inspirational, Tara! I love your images, and wish I could have made it to Vegas while you were still there….
that would have been swell, but we’ll find another time or place. 🙂 thank you!
Great post Tara. I love all of your images and hope that our paths cross again soon. xoxo
me too, Kristina. i have a feeling they will. xoxo
Oh Tara, how to wonderful to get to know you and your work better here; these are just epic shots! And four moves in five years. Yikes! x
I always enjoy your airy and dreamy photos, TaraS!
they are all so stunning!!!! seeing your photos and reading what you have written about doing a 365 makes me look at mine very differently–a much better way!!! thank you for sharing!!!
Tara, This is such a beautiful post and way of seeing the world around you! I’m so glad you shared it with us.
Great to meet you here, Tara. I admire you, your photos are so gorgeous. Great work!
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