I became a documentary photographer in my twenties, during my first visit to the Sahara. I was inspired and overwhelmed by the resilience of the people living in such a harsh environment.
Most of the places I have visited are so-called “hinterlands,” where weathered people have a great deal of pride in their traditional cultures. Indeed, I am fascinated with capturing the expression of such people embracing life fully, regardless of the severe burdens they face daily to survive.
However, the march of time has not left these hinterlands untouched. The precious cultures I have had the opportunity to witness and photograph are now changing dramatically, with the encroachment of globalization. I feel that the world is becoming standardized and uniformed, as all the interesting, unique variance of human experience is being ironed out for the sake of efficiency and convenience. This is a great loss for all of us.
That being said, the strong sense of belonging to one’s culture still remains. In response to globalization, the 21st century has seen a renaissance of religions across the world, as people rediscover cultural identity through religious traditions fostered over millennia. It is my hope to continue to capture this cultural persistence and religious expression, as well as the relationship that people have with the environments in which they live.