Have you ever met a real life superhero? Meet 17 year old Daniel, our October artist of the month, who traded in his cape for a camera. When Daniel was diagnosed with cancer at nine years old, his doctors gave him a 20 percent chance of survival. Eight years later and he is still here, a proud survivor making incredible art.
Hailing from New Orleans, Daniel participated in our Shutterbugs five week class during the Spring of 2016. He initially signed up because he thought it would be something new and interesting to do, but it quickly led to much more. Soon, Daniel started looking forward to getting out of the house and having the opportunity to interact with other kids that live with cancer.
Daniel’s first featured image will be displayed in our upcoming New Orleans
Gallery Show on Tuesday, October 25. His favorite activity outside of school is to play video games on his iPad and spend time outdoors. On one of Daniel’s recent excursions, he found his brother’s soccer ball seemingly abandoned or forgotten and took the opportunity to combine a number of the techniques he learned in class including composition, lighting, shadow, and framing.
The image is called “Chase,” named after Daniel’s brother. Chase is just one of Daniel’s nine siblings. “It’s really crazy [having all of these siblings],” Daniel said, “but it’s fun and never quiet.” Daniel has tried to photograph his siblings but explained that some of his brothers do not like to stop moving long enough to have their picture taken. By the looks of this soccer ball, Chase may be one of the siblings who does not like to slow down.
Daniel has an incredibly keen eye when it comes to framing his photographs and mastered every lesson in the five week course. He is currently a freshman in high school and while geometry may not be his strongest subject, he managed to make mundane math tools look incredibly interesting. Our next featured image from Daniel is entitled, “Do You See A Square?” Daniel took this photo as a homework assignment for class. “My dad helped me put an interesting perspective on it,” Daniel said, “the name of that tool is a square and the assignment was to take a photo of a square!”
“Do You See A Square?”
This next image is Daniel’s favorite of his collection. He loves that it is tricky, which makes it all the more interesting. “What Do You See?” was both a challenging and rewarding image for Daniel to capture – on his knees, pressed against the side of his family’s van waiting to snap this perfect moment. “It was luck I guess!” said Daniel, “An interesting picture sometimes involves luck. I was trying to get a picture of the sky from right against the car and the reflection did something that I wasn’t expecting.”
“What Do You See?”
Daniel’s final image is not only fantastic but is directly connected one of his other photographs. In yet another example of stellar framing, Daniel was able to photograph his family without even needing them to be in the image. The photo entitled “The Van” features the same 12 passenger van utilized to capture the reflection imagery in “What Do You See?” Daniel was surprised that such a simplistic image came out to be so striking and powerful. Clearly, he has mastered the ability to make the ordinary look extraordinary!
Daniel has continued to take photographs after participating in Shutterbugs and even served as the photographer for his church’s production of Noah’s Ark. The more Daniel works with photography, the more he realizes that he is inspired by his dad’s brother who is a professional photographer. “Before I had cancer, we would go to his house and take a family photo every year,” says Daniel, “he’s taken some great Christmas photos! He would do a regular photo and then we would all do a silly one afterward.” At this rate, Daniel may soon be taking his Uncle’s place as the family photographer. Daniel urges his new fans to continue supporting The Pablove Foundation and the Shutterbugs program. “Never give up hope about finding a cure for cancer. Never give up hope.”