Beyond The Wanderlust » Inspirational Photography Blog for Storytellers Worldwide

The Narrative Society: Educator Interview with Clarice Clifton

Most artists have a point in their life where they knew this was meant for them. Do you have that moment?

Yes! I had my oldest daughter, who is 6 now, when I was only 18, and as you can imagine life was a whirlwind of emotions. I picked up my first camera when she was about 6 months old as a way to not only document her days but also as a way to express my emotions in a healthy and creative outlet. I knew almost instantly that I had found my passion.. I had no idea where it would take me but I knew that I was meant to be behind a camera.

documentary photography, the narrative society

Documenting our children’s lives is so important. What is your secret to not getting bored with your daily life?

As a stay-at-home mom the days can definitely start to blur together… but simply put, if you open your eyes to the things that are often overlooked and change your perspective, life is never boring. Especially with two little girls running around and another one growing in my belly. There is always something exciting going on even if it’s not right there in your face. 

If there was only one moment you could photograph for the rest of your days, what would it be?

That moment right when my kids fall asleep. The chaos ceases for a few moments, everything is still and quiet. I love the way their faces soften. The peacefulness of it all tugs at my heart string in special ways.

documentary photography, the narrative society

Personally I find more inspiration from things outside of photography. Where do you find inspiration most?

I find inspiration in nature. We spend a lot of time outside and although I’m not what you would consider “outdoorsy” I have a strong connection with the earth. The colors everywhere, the way the dirt smells, the way the light streams through the trees or the wind blows… there is light, shadows, movement everywhere you turn, it’s untouched and raw. 

We all go through periods of mental blocks. How do you push past times of not finding inspiration?

I give myself a break – I think that self care is so important. Especially as an artist. Often we push ourselves to keep going and that’s when we burn out. Sometimes we just need to step away, to breathe and to be able to look at things with new and refreshed eyes. 

documentary photography, the narrative society

Who in your life inspires your art the most?

My daughters.

What inspires you more - light or movement?

Light

documentary photography, the narrative society

Documentary and lifestyle photography are different to some. How would you define them?

Lifestyle photography to me are the shots where there is gentle guidance offered, the story and emotion are still there and real but a bit it is a more polished, and clean whereas documentary photography is shooting the story as it unfolds with no guidance just silently sitting back and capturing the real and unfiltered moments as they happen.

documentary photography, the narrative society

Would you rather continue with your life or restart it?

100 percent, without a doubt, continue on with it. I feel very blessed to be living this life.

Would you rather reverse one decision you make every day or be able to stop time for 10 seconds every day?

Stop time for 10 seconds every day… I’ll never say no to more time.

documentary photography, the narrative society

Would you rather never be able to speak again or always have to say everything that is on your mind?

Always have to say everything that is on my mind.

Would you rather have no internet or no cell phone?

No cell phone. The internet has brought me a village of people greater than I could have ever imagined. I don’t think I could give that up.

documentary photography, the narrative society

Would you rather lose the ability to use GPS for the rest of your life or lose the ability to use a debit or credit card?

This is such a hard question for me as a spender and someone who is directionally challenged! I guess if I had to choose I would say the ability to use a debit or credit card for the rest of my life. I think that would make my husband happiest. 😉

Would you rather have eyes that can film everything or ears that can record everything?

Eyes that can film everything. How amazing would that be?

documentary photography, the narrative society

Would you rather have unlimited storage space on your iPhone or unlimited storage space in real-life?

Unlimited iPhone storage

Would you rather walk the Great Wall of China or Amazon River?

Oh wow. I definitely think the Amazon River.

Would you rather win an Academy Award or an Olympic Gold Medal?

Sports are not my thing so I’m going with Academy Award. 

Would you rather be fabulously famous and poor or unknown and rich?

Unknown and rich

clarice-profile-round

Clarice Clifton of Clarice Clifton – Photographer
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