I'm a photographer who writes, draws, sells books and vintage clothing while sometimes severing coffee, that is if I'm not hanging around my fav record store.
Hi! I'm Dani Rae Perez (aka Trueartgirl) the multicultural independent artist from Columbia, Missouri.
I'm that girl about downtown who shoots and posts black and white pictures. Mostly of local concerts and events. It's a passion of mine to capture and preserve human interaction. Be it a rad concert, a community event, or just friends gathering in their normal everyday places it's all precious and beautiful to me. It's such a precious joy watching my town change and grow through my lens and all the beautiful people within it.
The reason why I choose to do most of my photography in black and white is that we seem to take our site of color for granted. It's like in Alice Walker's book The Color Purple:
"I think it pisses God off when you walk by the color purple in a field somewhere and don't notice it."
We sometimes miss out on the unique details of humanity and the everyday surroundings we live in. Like a soft whisper, it makes us pay a little more attention and appreciate the mundane and extraordinary. Sometimes, it's just nice to be noticed, acknowledged and loved. Sometimes there are important things to be said that are lost in sound, sorrow, anger, and frustration. Photography captures these moments in its most potent form and has a way to project it out and bring awareness to something. If you think about it, it's inspiring.
Taking photos is such a meditation for me in all it's beautiful and ugly glory. In this day and age, so much is changing at a very fast pace. Which is why I'm on a mission to capture and preserve as much of life as possible. The bands I see, the places I go, the people I see on the daily-they will all go away one day. We love to think things last forever, but hey even the Beatles broke up and two of them aren't of this earth anymore (sniffles). My point is this, all we have is this moment and it is important to live in it as much as possible. However, I also believe some of that moment should be frozen in time for the future generations to say, "Hey, is that what it was like then? How cool! Terrible! Weird! Sad!" Could you imagine what life would be like now if no one took photos of the Wild West, the Holocaust, the civil rights moment of the 60s and 70s, the Aides epidemic of the 70s and 80s, or even our own planet the Earth!!! How about a life without seeing your grandparents as a child or the concerts your parents saw when they were young with the people they were friends with. The stories you would miss out on. The life lessons you wouldn't have learned.
Photos matter. Life matters. It should be captured, preserved, and protected.
So that's what I'm doing. I take photos of my town and I post them. Of course, that is not all I do. The community is a massive part of my life and I love collaborating with mine. Throughout this blog, you will see a lot of that. Columbia is a potent art town full of sophisticated and weird creatures and creations. There are also many other projects and interests I do outside my camera life. Like music, vintage clothing, food, nerdy things, books etc. My goal here really is to just tell stories and share my penny thoughts while showing off some of my work. If anything, I hope this inspires you to pick up your passion and run with it, share it, protect and preserve it!
I strongly believe that artists should have a moral and cultural responsibility to be scientifically literate as well as reflecting the times they live in. The best kind of artists is those who are aware of their soundings. I'm also a heavy believer in celebrating and preserving diversity in culture and landscape, especially in my community.