The Alliance Art Gallery will feature the work of one of their newest members, Connie Stephens, during the month of January. Stephens is a well known Hannibal photographer. She finds inspiration for her work in nature’s beauty and the world around us.
Stephens has always owned a camera. She began taking pictures of family and friends on her Brownie camera when she was a child. With the birth of her first grandchild in 1999, she purchased her first high-end camera, a Canon PowerShot G9. Stephens states that purchase was a turning point in her true exploration of photography as an art form. She began her self education through books, the internet, YouTube “classes” and lots of practice.
Retiring in 2003 from the Missouri Department of Social Services, Stephens began challenging herself to create photographs that are enjoyable and that stimulate one’s imagination. She began taking pictures of local interest and Mark Twain related subjects, then creating pictures and cards as keepsakes for people visiting America’s Hometown. In 2007, she bought her first DSLR camera and expanded her techniques. Stephens says she merely wants people to enjoy her photos and to see the beauty she observes every day.
Stephens is a member of the Hannibal Photo Club and the Hannibal Arts Council. She has exhibited at Hannibal LaGrange University and the Hannibal Arts Council. She has received several awards throughout her career and was published in the “Best of Photography for 2002”, an annual publication from the Photographer’s Forum Magazine.
An exhibit of her work will open on Saturday, January 9, with a reception from 5 p.m. until 8 p.m. and will continue through February 12. The opening coincides with the Second Saturday Gallery Open House, a free, monthly gathering to meet member artists and to view their newest work. A piece of Stephens’s artwork will be given away at a 6 p.m. drawing.