I’m in the Creative Content Development team, based in New York, managing a small but very versatile team of editors. We work with an ever-expanding array of Getty contributors and content, ranging from in-depth collaboration with our traditional professional photographers to the guidance and curation of newer content sources, like the crowd-sourced realms of Moment. In short, we are in some way involved with all the pictures coming into the Getty House collections: supporting key relationships, recruiting and signing up new talent, overseeing the review and ingestion workflows, organizing what content goes where. The volume and scope of imagery has grown exponentially since I started with Getty 16 years ago (!), and it’s both an exciting and challenging time in the industry.
My visual education started when I was about 6 or 7, lying on my living room floor entranced for hours by The Family of Man, that classic of humanist photography. From that point on I was hooked by the unique ability of photographs to observe and interpret the world - all of its humor, beauty, pain, whimsy, spirit, the obvious and the ephemeral. I was lucky enough to take a photography class in high school with an incredible teacher – thank you, Eileen Hohmuth - a photojournalist in her own right who brought her passion to impressionable kids like me. I later got my degree in photography and writing, working on documentary projects. Alas, at some point I was eager for a regular paycheck, and so interviewed for a photo research position with The Image Bank. I had never heard of stock photography before, and had a horribly judgmental view of ‘commercial’ photography, but being paid to look at pictures all day seemed like a pretty good deal. I quickly learned a much wider visual vocabulary, and to appreciate the equally powerful influence imagery has on the world through advertising and design as it does in journalism. After a stint in research and sales, an editing position opened up in the Creative Department and I’ve been here ever since. I love that, even with the huge volume of material always coming through, I still see pictures that amaze and inspire me almost every day.
What are you passionate about outside of your work life?
I’m an avid runner, slightly obsessed with various aspects of my training. I like racing the half marathon distance, and can be just fast enough to keep my competitive spirit hooked (though never actually fast enough to win ). Since having my daughter 2 years ago, it’s a triumph just to fit regular runs in to a hectic schedule, and so for now I’m trying to adjust to a more casual approach. Or maybe just shorter race distances! Luckily, she’s getting into it too, nice and early - ‘Mommy, you’re going out for a run? I want to stretch with you!’ Too cute. I look forward to the day I’m back out there competing.
Does anyone ever actually have an answer to this question? My tastes and interests change too often to pin down just one, and there are books I’d once have said were major influences that now seem embarrassing – ah, impressionable youth! That said Midnight’s Children by Salman Rushdie is one that stays with me, and often pops into my mind out of nowhere. It’s just riveting storytelling with a masterful blending of fiction and non-fiction, artistry and reality, that really echoes what I like best in both literature and photography. I love essays, though, and am generally carrying around several copies of the New Yorker just trying to get through them all – easier for the subway commute! Now that I’m in the wonderful world of kid’s books, I’m rediscovering many wise old favorites – run out and get a copy of Harold and the Purple Crayon right now if you don’t know it!
How do you like to spend Sundays?
An ideal Sunday would start with my two year old actually sleeping through the night! I love to start the day with a nice long run through various Brooklyn neighborhoods or Prospect Park, having that meditative time to myself before spending the rest of the day with my family. Simple pleasures: meeting up with friends for a walk and good coffee, getting the most amazing Russian raisin walnut bread at our local farmer’s market, maybe even a little cultural excursion to a museum, the botanic gardens, or, now that it’s summer, one of the many outdoor events going on all around. I love the rich diversity of this city and having a free day to discover new treats and treasures – food, music, art, playgrounds, parks, and all the crazy characters in between - makes me very happy.