Creative Mapping Feature: Images from Around the Globe

Thrilled to have my work presented on Creative Mapping- the creative collective blog.

creative mapping Infrared Photographer Terri Gold

Award-winning, fine art photographer and creative nomad Terri Gold captures her beautiful, other worldly photographs of tribal and nomadic cultures and their rites using invisible light. This light which cannot be seen exists on the invisible part of the spectrum and is captured by infrared sensitive film to reveal a enchanting and poetic under-layer. At home in unfamiliar lands, the wanderlust fueled photographer lives a surreal existence where time and centuries coexist. As an outsider, Gold’s ability to tap into foreign worlds with such an intimacy whilst also emphasising the mystery encapsulated within their rituals and ceremonies is an impressive balance. And her talents are held in great esteem within the photography and creative worlds.

Traveling across oceans, deserts and deep into the bush with up to three cameras in tow along with an ever growing passion and wanderlust, Gold is seeking to shine light on the fragility of tribal cultures seemingly untouched by time; using a light that cannot be seen with the naked eye.

CM: Your work has been published in numerous digital and print outlets, what first garnered notice of your work?
I think the global response to my work speaks to the universal connection that all humans share. The loss of diverse cultures and species is becoming inextricably connected with the development of the modern world. The cultural diversity of our planet is where our greatest creativity lies. Though we may not see our own customs and traditions in these images, it is my hope that we recognize our common humanity. Our challenge now is to keep the poetry of diversity alive…



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Opening Reception – Keyes Art – November 3rd – Terri Gold

Terri Gold - Keyes Art Projects


A Condition of Empathy

I came across this Ansel Adams quote the other day on a wonderful photography blog by  Nicole Gibson .

“As with all art, the photographer’s objective is not the duplication of visual reality. Photography is an investigation of both the outer and the innerworlds. The first experiences with the camera involve looking at the world beyond the lens. Trusting that the instrument will capture something seen. The terms “shoot” and “take” are not accidental: they represent an attitude of conquest and appropriation. Only when the photographer grows into perception and creative impulse does the term “make” define a condition of empathy between the external and internal events.”

This is on my mind  as I am editing  my new work from China and beginning the process of creating a new body of work.

I had some visual goals in mind, that are always very fluid and evolving. I  was looking to see with feeling . To create work that asks questions as well as answers.

It’s a difficult process. I want to create beautiful work, work that keeps up with my own pace as an artist and craftsman, but I often  worry that I’ve shot my last good
image, that everything from here on out is just derivative and cliché. We all struggle with  doubts. There is a creative arc on a trip –  to the flow of making the work and even to the journey itself.

I remembered to  trust the process (most of the time) –  and just kept going…

The Lush Landscape

The Lush Landscape

Terraced Rice Fields in the Mountains

The Li River

National Costumes

Dong Village Playing Lushen Flutes

Gejias Dancers

Dong Village

Gejia Tribal Women

Pheasant Miao - headresses flying

China is humming
the economy
the people
the land
are all bursting to move forward.

From the villages to the small cites…

I was mainly in the remote areas but know the bigger cities are certainly growing as fast as they can…

I read  this week, the invitations  for the royal wedding, invited guests to come in their national costume.

It struck me
because during the whole trip I was impressed by the incredibly ornate National Costumes worn in SW China and especially in Guizhou.

I was experiencing the effects, the beauty and changing traditions within the tribes – Miao, Dong, Shui, Gejias, and more, through their dress and whether they were still wearing and making by hand their National Costumes which  are so much a part of the fabric of their lives.

This tribal area of China
is unique – with 57 different minorities.
Each one wears a different costume
that is handmade by the women-
either woven, batiked and usually hand embroidered.
Each village chooses different patterns and colors and designs even within the tribal groups. There are White Collar Miao,Long Skirt Miao,Pheasant Miao and so many more…

The older people are still wearing their National Costume every day but the next generation is only wearing the colorful garments and the amazing graceful head dresses for the festivals. The young girls of the next generation do not all want to farm the land and embroider their costumes in the doorways (the interiors do not have enough light). They want a better and different life and want to move towards the more urban areas and work in factories.
I went to one local marketplace where they had some of the beautiful embroidered jackets that were machine made and maybe that is the future.

Traditions and rituals are still points in a turning world, they are our histories, our roots and our connections to the past, and they are our future as well.

I remember reading a line from a Rumi poem once

“we are the still cool water and the jar that pours

always duality

it certainly keeps life interesting…

All Journeys have a Rhythm

100 Bird Miao

China is a wild and complex mixture- in time and placeancient and modern all at once.

There is building and construction everywhere
 from the small tribal villages to the provincial cities and towns we are passing
 There is a hum of activity
 new roads are being built-towering bridges and dams – and homes
 in the villages they are wooden
 all built without nails
 in the cities they are concrete and without much charm.

 Today’s drive was on a bone jarring mud and rock road for hours…

Stopped at two amazing villages
 100 Bird Miao and Shui
 they danced for us and offered food and drink
 then we explored the village.

Now we have arrived at our hotel
 and there is an Internet connection…

 The images are challenging
 trying to connect –

To see with feeling
 it’s all fascinating and good
 though not always easy…

I planned to post images
while traveling on Facebook.

I completely forgot
China does not allow Facebook or tube
so I will begin now…
Epiphanies sometimes flash and flare for the traveler – flickering moments of discovery, seen out of the corner of your eye.

This journey reminded me of our sacred rhythms and rituals – what and how we celebrate together  – Its for moments like this I left home.

100 Bird Miao