Eye for nature nets teen photographer a berth at ArtsCrawl

By Shondiin Silversmith
Navajo Times

STEAMBOAT, Ariz., May 8, 2014

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When wandering the fitness trails or hiking along small mesas, it's easy to let small bits of nature go unnoticed. But for Tieley Tsosie, those are moments waiting to be captured -- captured by her camera, that is.

Tsosie, 15, has wandered the terrain of her home in Rock Springs, N.M. for years, and just in the past two she started to notice certain moment's most people would miss. Like a butterfly resting on a nearby flower or the sun shining through the loopholes some drying weeds.

Tsosie said she got her first camera when she was 12, but she admits that she found her passion in photographing "when I caught a gorgeous picture of the sunrise one day."

She added that she loves it now because of the reaction her pictures get from her family members.

"They're shocked that God created (it)," Tsosie said. "It's so beautiful and amazing, and some people don't get to see it the way I see it. I want them to see how I view the world."

Since then Tsosie said she likes to go out whether it be for an evening stroll or a hiking adventure to take nature photos.

"I take my camera with me and I capture just about anything with it," Tsosie said. When Tsosie turned 14 she said that is when she started to taking her pictures more seriously to the point that she started looking for places to publish her photos. "I'm trying to get out there slowly," Tsosie added.

She said that being photographer, to her, is a new way to view the earth and life because she is learning new things when capturing these moments that will last in a little picture frame.

Tsosie says she works with two cameras. One is for day-to-day shooting which is a point-and-shoot, and the other is her Nikon D1000, with which she takes her nature photos.

Tsosie's keen eye for nature's little wonders earned her a spot in her first gallery showing during Gallup's May ArtsCrawl this coming weekend.

The freshman at Rehoboth Christian School said she is very excited but a little nervous.

"I'm hoping this (the gallery showing) will open doors for me and get me further," Tsosie said because she wants to take this opportunity to meet new people.

Tsosie's mother Valerie Long said that she is overcome with joy because she knows her daughter has a real passion for photography.

"It gives me an inspiration outlook that there is a future for my kids," Long said, noting that if this is a lifelong passion for her daughter, her upcoming gallery opening will show her that she can have that.

Several of her nature photos will be on display at the Industry Gallery. She said some of them are of flowers, sunsets and animals.

"Most of my pictures are unique and if you were taking a walk you would miss it," Tsosie said, noting that some of the photos are up close so people can get a better look.

"It's beautiful," Tsosie added, and she wants people to know from her pictures that there is a God out there. "We all have a talent," she said.

ArtsCrawl Gallup is held every second Saturday of the month in downtown Gallup It features local artists, music and special events.

The ArtsCrawl will be hosted on May 10 and Tsosie's photos will be on display at the Industry Gallery.

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