No, the woman in this picture is not Rhonda Smith. This cigar-smoking Cuban native* is just one of the images Rhonda captured on her recent trip to that Caribbean island to re-awaken her creative juices as a photojournalist. Rhonda is one courageous woman.
We first spoke in early fall last year when she was looking for direction. It quickly became apparent to me that this passionate woman came alive when she talked about travel and photography. After much back and forth dialogue, I challenged her to schedule a photojournalism trip for herself to parts unknown.
She accepted the test. Picking the location and doing the photography were the icing on the cake. The bigger hurdles were freeing herself up from her home life for a week–3 year old twin girls–and giving herself permission to dare to do this. In Rhonda’s words, “Just the act of negotiating it was a tremendous leap in my growth as a person. I had not even considered photography as anything but memorializing my experiences and my daughters’ childhood…and now I feel as though someone has switched a light on!”
Here are two more of her brilliant images. I feel privileged to be scooping Ocean Drive magazine who will be publishing many more of them this year.
I get so energized by the women I meet in my everyday entrepreneurial encounters and want to share that inspiration with all those who read my blog. Every so often, I hear something that is off-the-charts fearless and thrilling. I’m going to use Fridays to describe these women, perhaps weekly or monthly, and would love to hear from you about your own fearlessness or that of someone you know.
*BTW, Rhonda has come across this woman’s image several times since she took this shot for which she paid the ‘model’ one Cuban peso. It seems that this bespectacled lady always charges visiting photographers a small sum for becoming their subject. I say yahoo to her entrepreneurial spirit.
This is Rhonda…and her daughters.