Hello friends and welcome to my blog, Village Voyager. My name is Keith King and I’m a photographer in the northwest, lower peninsula, of Michigan. It is my hope that this blog provides a space for all, including me, to be inspired, to grow and to learn.
Village Voyager has some meanings behind it that I feel are important to explain. The Village part of Village Voyager was chosen to represent community. After earning a degree in photojournalism and taking pictures throughout many communities, I’ve come to appreciate, first the people, but also the many other facets that make a location, area and beyond, unique.
The Voyager part of Village Voyager was chosen to represent exploration and discovery. The voyage can be grand and far but MORE importantly, the voyage can be short and simple. It’s all about realizing that there is beauty and uniqueness in our immediate surroundings if we’re open to it.
One way to get the most out of life is to look upon it as an adventure.William Feather
Following legendary street photographers like Henri Cartier-Bresson and Berenice Abbott, to only name a couple, was difficult when I would become inspired by their amazing photos of large cities only to head downtown where I live, or anywhere nearby, and see so few people. This would be especially true during winter. This disappointment turned around once I found out a few things:
- Photographers such as William Eggleston, Stephen Shore and Joel Sternfeld proved that something as beautiful as color observation in all types of areas, not just bustling city streets, could result in true works of art.
- Photographers like Trent Parke and Matt Black showed me that there is a wealth of depth to be photographed in small towns and communities of various sizes. Also, photographers like Diane Arbus and Dan Winters were pivotal in my photographic journey as I viewed their works of powerful portrait photography.
- It’s natural to want to travel to amazing cities and places of all types but what is close to us is not only nearby but it’s also special. It’s a place and area that many people in the world don’t have access to so why not appreciate it. An area may not be unique to us but it sure would be to millions of other people.
Of course, when Meg and I are able to travel, the newness of anywhere creates a visual feast and is a ton of fun. The conditioning of the photographic muscles at home, for me, seems to keep the creative juices flowing, akin to an athlete training, and enhances the photography while traveling.
When I’m not photographing an assignment, I’m assigning myself to get out and take photos. Whether we realize it or not, in urban areas or rural, large cities or the small villages, there is a world of photographic subjects awaiting wherever we are.
Look forward to seeing posts here on my photographic endeavors as I not only show pictures, but also provide explanations behind them. If what I write resonates, helps or inspires even one person then I’ll consider that a success. I also look forward to learning from all of you as we can all learn so much from one another. Thanks again for spending time at Village Voyager.
2 thoughts on “Welcome”
I’ve really enjoyed reading through your essays over the past week. You’re a fantastic ambassador for the northern part of the state. Very much so for photography, too. Really fine images. both your writing and your approach to the craft personify the goodness and low key thoughtfulness of the best of MI, imho. I grew up near Muskegon but I’ve been gone for a pretty long time. at any rate, nice work here!
Your thoughtful message really means a lot, thank you Jason! You may have noticed, I was just in Muskegon earlier in the summer for an assignment. I appreciate you taking the time to read my essays. Having a photojournalism background, the varying degrees of storytelling—visually and textually—are extremely fulfilling to me. Photojournalism in a small town can feel like a rather isolated pursuit, so I try to offer bits of inspiration and tips so that others will be inspired to document their surroundings and not feel alone while doing it.