I am a retired Reform rabbi. For over forty years my life was spent immersed with words. I read. I wrote. I spoke. (Occasionally I listened.) But all along I increasingly became aware that — to paraphrase Peter Sellers in the movie "Being There" — I like to look.
Photography is a relatively new thing for me. In 2017, in anticipation of retirement, I made a conscious decision to explore the camera as a form of self-discovery. I always liked taking pictures, but it really wasn't until the advent of social media that I came to appreciate that photography was something I did fairly well. So often I would post pictures from my vacations and people would go out of their way to tell me I had a good “eye.” Even more, however, it was only when I started to do photography seriously that I realized I had a deep need to be creative. And while for most of my adult life I exercised my creative instincts with words, when I took a camera in hand I came to recognize that I had harbored a life-long affection for the visual. Now, instead of taking pictures, I began a journey of 'making' pictures.
My photographs have been accepted in Jersey City's "Cathedral Arts Festival," Studio Montclair's "Inspired by an Object" and "Inspired by George Inness" juried exhibitions, and the annual Photography Exhibition of the Belmar Arts Council, where I have been the recipient of the "Merit Award in Black and White Photography" (2019) and the "Merit Award in Photojournalism" (2020). Most recently (2022), I have had two photographs accepted into the New York Center for Photographic Art (NYC4PA) juried competitions, one receiving a 2nd Prize in Show and another being included as a "Juror's Selection." Additionally, several of my images have been selected by the editorial staff of Leica Fotografie International, including the prestigious "Leica Master Shots" collection.
I shoot Leica and Sony digital mirrorless cameras.
Steven Kushner | June 2023
Upper Photo: Jonathan Woll