As a professional photographer I have had a few truly inspirational people who have touched and molded me into who I am now. One such person is Ward Sanders. Mr. Sanders, as some of my friends know, was a jack-of-all-trades who taught many subjects over the years. One such subject that I was already intrigued and drawn to at a young age was photography. I was extremely fortunate to have been in Ward’s Photography I and II class during my sophomore and junior years at Cy-Fair High School during the eighties. He was one of those teachers I will never forget. He was more than a teacher; he was a mentor to many of us who took his class. He inspired us by exposing us to music, movies, books and so much more.
I visited him the summer before attending the University of Texas as he had moved back home to be close to his family in the San Antonio area. I never forgot how he changed and influenced me. Before a Hill Country trip in 2006, I looked him up again to touch base and arranged a visit. It was amazing to see his artwork and to catch up. I once again saw him briefly a year later as he is represented by Hooks-Epstein Gallery in Houston and from time to time is in town for a new show.
This summer I planned to be in Central Texas again and arranged another visit. He is a remarkable person and I cannot say enough about how he continues to inspire me. I spent half a day with him and his wife and had the pleasure of capturing a few images of his workshop, as well as a few of him, where he creates intricate assemblages inspired by Joseph Cornell. The sheer volume of items collects and utilizes in his creations is overwhelming. You can view more of Ward’s finished pieces here.