Artist Natasha Sanchez uses a solar photographic process to capture unique moments in nature. See more of her work by visiting her website.
I’m a self-taught photographic artist, songwriter and performer.
I can recall creating various artworks since I was five years old. Art played a huge part in my upbringing, whether it was through seeing (and performing in) theatre, going to movies, listening to and playing music or writing.
I’ve never thought of art as something separate from my world; rather, I think of it as something ingrained in all of us as we each follow our own paths to create our world.
Photography was always something I was interested in learning, though I was somewhat intimidated by it in my younger years. I thought of it as so technical.
That intimidation changed when, determined to learn the techniques I needed to make me a better photographer, I got a job in a darkroom. It was there, by observing the connection between aperture, speed and contrast, that I understood all photography really consists of is a relationship—from the snap of the shutter to the print on the paper.
From that moment on, it ceased being something too technical and instead became something inherent. I further understood this relationship when halfway through my photographic career, I became immersed in the art of lumen printing, creating photographs with the sun.
Exploring this solar photographic process has been one of my greatest joys. I’m consistently enamored by the correlation between the sun, the subject and the paper and in awe of the beauty of the natural world, especially our role within it.
I am as inspired by the tiniest of weeds growing out of a crack in the concrete as I am by the tallest of trees. One of the questions I ask myself when choosing a subject is, “What is within and what can this be?”
That the lumen print can sometimes expose the subject’s inner nature is something I find intriguing and is a component I apply to all my artforms. I create photographs and write song lyrics to evoke thoughts, feelings and moments in time. I create lumen prints to witness moments in nature.
I love the process of creating these images. I think of the composition as the communication, making sure each part gets seen and heard.
The exposure can take anywhere from a few minutes or a few days, depending on solar and earthly elements. I monitor the progress of the print throughout its journey. For me, the lumen print process is a connective, meditative and collective process within which I can expand my worldview and share it with others.