(coming soon!)

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Readying for SCBWI

Guess I might call myself again an author!

It is Summer 2018 and while continuing heavily with photography, I am about to join fellow authors and illustrators, many old friends and hopefully many new, at the annual Society of Children's Book Writers And Illustrators (SCBWI) conference here in Los Angeles.  It's time to recommence working on my craft.

And this with news:

LIFE DOESN'T FRIGHTEN ME: Still in print after its release to acclaim in 1993, my pairing of the expressive artwork of the late artist, Jean-Michel Basquiat with a 1978 poem by one of our American idols, Maya Angelou is about to be re-marketed by Abrams Books for Young Readers in a 25th Anniversary Edition, to be released next January 2018.

In this edition, I have the privilege of writing and adding an afterword, updating the biographies and resource materials and helping create a new look for this classic.  Here is the proposed cover!


My friend, Tyrus Wong, died at the end of last year 2016 at the venerable age of 106.  I last photographed him out at Southern California's Santa Monica Beach last summer when he was 105.

At his death, his life was celebrated worldwide, including the front page of the New York Times with my photographic portrait of him, and in the documentary by filmmaker Pamela Tom, set to broadcast  on PBS American Masters on 8 September this year.  

The major retrospective of Tyrus' artwork, including his early drawings for Walt Disney's Bambi was held at the Walt Disney Family Museum in San Francisco in 2013 and again at the Museum of Chinese in America in NYC.  In both exhibitions, I was asked to create the photographic "story" of Tyrus and his kites.    A small version of that exhibition - many of the kites and my photographs - is now on view in Malibu, CA at their City Hall through the end of July.

I am so pleased to announce that I am working on a book for youth on Tyrus' 40+ years after he retired  and learning how to make and fly his artistic kites!  I had created a promo book about them as part of my photographic project process (can be seen online at https://issuu.com/sarajaneboyersphoto/docs/sjboyers_goflyakite_1)  and now, it seems time to share the work and Tyrus' amazing life with young readers.  Look soon for further news!!!!!


 Much of the work I hope to do now revolves around my favorite format: illustrated picture books.  Presently my goal is to write and photo-illustrate. With major interest and investment in the arts  throughout my life, it feels that this is where I fit.

I hope some of you, former readers and new ones, will join me in this exploration. Whether for youth or, as in the case of my two long-term photo projects - FINDING CHINATOWN: AN AMERICAN STORY and DETROIT:DEFINITION - that I am merging as well into books (and of course, exhibition), there are always stories to present for a variety of ages. 

It is good to be back.


A written essay by me, " .... No, It's Not the East," will be published this summer by Belt Publishing in their DETROIT NEIGHBORHOOD GUIDEBOOK.

An article on a house designed by the respected mid-century California-based architect, Pierre Koenig, and featuring my photography was just published in the Summer2017 issue of MODERN MAGAZINE, to be online soon but now on the racks!

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Old Into New: My return to Books. My continuance in Photography

As many know,  in the first years of the millennium while promoting and writing what was probably one of the first "blogs" - then a periodic email - relating to my 2000 book, TEEN POWER POLITICS: MAKE YOURSELF HEARD, I started to shift my creative career toward my passion since youth: photography. 

I loved the three books that I had created, wrote and edited for the youth market, several of which crossed-over to adult reader, but it seemed time to also pursue what had always been so central to my life in helping me capture experience and story: photography.  I had no intention of leaving writing, as the sheer delight of being able to bring joy, beauty and critical thinking all in one package to youth and their families has always been a goal.  Rather I took a sabbatical to explore what else I was capable of doing.

I have still been writing whether for the small portfolio books/catalogues that I created for my photographic work these many years (viewable online at issuu) or, since the sensibility of a writer is always present in terms of creating a project, in editing and presenting a portfolio.  Much that I explored photographically has also given rise to book ideas and I have been making dummies, many of them using my photographic imagery as the story, or a part of it.

Now, it is 15+ years down the road and I have an active fine art photographic career with exhibits in galleries, museums and most recently a small participation in the U.S. Pavilion at the prestigious Venice Biennale/Architecture!  It is time to combine both of my loves - words and visuals - and several book projects will be soon out to publishers.  I even have a new children's literary agent  for my new book projects, one I have always admired and with whom I really look forward to working!

Erzsi Deàk
Hen&ink, A Literary Studio
+336 8993 7475

It is a bit back to square one although I am very proud to say that my first book, LIFE DOESN'T FRIGHTEN ME, pairing the words of Maya Angelou with the evocative artwork of Jean-Michel Basquiat, and published in l993 by Stewart, Tabori & Chang (now Abrams) is now almost 25 years in print!  It had been more than gratifying to have heard so many tell me how inspirational LIFE has been for them, child and adult, and I certainly hope to create more books that could also attain those goals.

At present, I am reconfiguring SaraJaneBoyersAloud as my temporary literary website to showcase the work before and chat/announce news about this renewed direction.  I look forward to many of you joining me on this journey. When my new website - sarajaneboyersbooks.com - comes online, I'll certainly make a splash announcement!

Those of you new here are welcome to look back on SaraJaneBoyersAloud to see how, during these years in photography, I have yet written about subjects that concern us all and it may be, as the years continue here, that I will do so again, not only about my own books and images, but about life and matters as well.  For now: the books!

Sara Jane Boyers July 2016

In the past, looking forward to the future:

Chronicle Books l994

Millbrook Press 2000

And BTW: since it is an election year in the US, do wander over to the TEEN POWER POLITICS website at www.teenpowerpolitics.com
 The site and issues are really outdated (2000!) BUT the concerns of this respected non-partisan book for youth on civic and political activism and the information imparted are still relevant today in terms of critical thinking for elections and the book remains on various political websites.

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Lunar New Year Greeting 2015 AND Spring 2015 Update!

Realized I never posted this year's Year of the Sheep Lunar Greeting from February


and now, my Spring Update


So honored to be included in BOTH SIDES OF SUNSET: PHOTOGRAPHING LOS ANGELES, from Metropolis Books/D.A.P., to be premiered at ParisPhotoLA on this coming Saturday, 2 May from 3pm - 4pm.

Come to ParisPhotoLA on Saturday where 50 of the artists (including me!) will participate in a massive book launch & signing at the Glee VIP Room (the New York Backlot on Chicago street).  Books will also be available at the ArtBook/D.A.P. booth and online.

The list of photographers included is long and stellar (below is only the list signing Saturday) and it is a privilege to be among them.

BOTH SIDES OF SUNSET is edited by Jane Brown & Marla Kennedy with an introduction by David Ulin and forward by Ed Ruscha.
My contribution: Two prints from my GRIDLOCK project.

Just returned from the New York City opening of Water to Paper: Paint to Sky, Tyrus Wong's retrospective that traveled from the Walt Disney Family Musem, SF to the Museum of Chinese in America and in which I have ten large prints of Tyrus, his family and community out flying kites at Santa Monica Beach

Lots of wonderful accolades for this so gracious and talented man including an article in the Wall Street Journal (and using my photographs!).
At the New York Historical Society I was able to finally see the installation of my photographs of Tyrus and his kites - the closing panel and in the closing video - in their just closed exhibition: Chinese Americans: Inclusion/Exclusion.  The exhibition is traveling early 2016 to the Oregon Historical Society in Portland, OR.


Thursday, December 25, 2014

Sara Jane Boyers Photo_Winter Update 2014

The Fall consisted of several deadlines, two museum openings for exhibitions that contained work from me and two important visits as I returned to my DETROIT: DEFINTION project.  A good season.

Here is my Winter Update (also available at http://us4.campaign-archive1.com/?u=013a28d9f024038bd399086bb&id=9f767c8688&e=0351ba6630)

Winter Update 2014

A bit close to the holidays but I did want to share several exciting upcoming events already in place for 2015 as well as good news since my Spring report on the Leica Gallery/Los Angeles opening of my GRIDLOCK project.

New Bio-Engineering Building, Wayne State University, Detroit November 2014


FIRST: Looking Ahead to 2015!
 Friday, 16 January through Sunday, 18 January
Opening Night Gala 15 January

Along with Los Angeles-based photographers Aline Smithson, Ann Mitchell and Martin Cox, I will be showing work from my continuing REVISIT.RENEW.NEW fine art architectural project that emphasizes line, form and detail in the living space.

March 2014
Museum of Chinese in America, New York

The retrospective of now 104 year-old artist, TYRUS WONG, is traveling from its 2013 opening at the Walt Disney Family Museum in San Francisco to NYC's Museum of Chinese In America, a recent building designed by artist/designer Maya Lin, the creator of the elegant and poignant Vietnam Veteran's Memorial in DC.

A beautifully compiled exhibition on such a talented artist and lovely man, the section of the exhibition with my photographic "story" of Tyrus and friends flying his hand-made kites at the beach was a hit in SF and will be included in the NYC retrospective as will be the elegant exhibition catalog that features a centerfold of my kite photographs.   My little book GO FLY A KITE: SATURDAYS AT THE BEACH WITH TYRUS WONG will also be there.  It can be previewed on issuu at http://issuu.com/sarajaneboyersphoto/docs/sjboyers_goflyakite_1

Below: Tyrus at his 104th (!) birthday kite-fly this past October!


Both Sides of Sunset: Photographing Los Angeles
Metropolis Books/Distributed Art Publishers (D.A.P)
Launching at ParisPhotoLA 2015


Two photographs from my GRIDLOCK project will be published in Metropolis Books/DAP's new book, Both Sides of Sunset: Photographing Los Angeles, the sequel to the acclaimed and sold out Looking at Los Angeles (Metropolis Books 2005). The editorial contributors are amazing; the list of photographers is stellar and I am so honored to be included!  Look for it in Paris Photo's ever crowded D.A.P booth in early May!



The exhibit is over but there is nothing better than a great interviewer, even post-show, who makes you feel comfortable and asks intelligent, provocative questions. Ibarionex Perello made me sound so good and in so doing, helped me also understand better what in fact I am doing.  So honored as well to be among the photographers he has chosen to speak with! The interview is available on The Candid Frame  (#238)

The limited edition set of boxed prints, Gridlock: Tire & Tread is still at the Leica Gallery/LA, as is a framed photograph from the show, hanging in their VIP viewing room!

ASMP/LA, of which I am an Architectural & Fine Art specialty member, included some of my GRIDLOCK imagery in a slide show of their "favourite female photographers," which was projected at the Month of Photography Los Angeles (MOPLA) closing event in late April at Boulevard 3 in Hollywood.

Asian and Pacific Islander Calendar and Cultural Guide
Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs
Honored that again, the Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs has included two of my photographs of the Los Angeles downtown Chinatown from my FINDING CHINATOWN project in their 2014 Asian And Pacific Islander Cultural Heritage and Calendar.

@ The New York Historical Society
September 26, 2014 - April 19, 2015
 The New York Historical Society is exhibiting THREE of my photographs for their new exhibition, CHINESE AMERICAN: EXCLUSION/INCLUSION, two on the introductory panel to their closing section on contemporary Chinese-Americans and the third in their exhibition video.

NO FIXED ADDRESS @ The Leonardo, Salt Lake City
November 6, 2014 - Spring 2015
For their new exhibition, NO FIXED ADDRESS: THE FACE OF AMERICA'S HOMELESS, The Leonardo, Salt Lake City's terrific new museum about exploration and seeing, commissioned me to photograph the iconic Santa Barbara Moreton Bay Fig Tree, symbolic in terms of the rights of those without an address.  My photograph was printed at a grand 5' x 9'!



Extremely excited that I have been included in the "Curators Selection" of the Call for Artists for the LA County METRO (1200+ applied). While not yet a commission, the Curators Committee consisted of reps from the Getty, the Broad, Hammer, LACMA and MOCA so it was indeed an honor to make their selection. Let's hope I can participate in a project commission (I am on the "list" for the next three years).



With great joy this Fall I was able to resume my long-term project photographing in my birth city, Detroit.

I visited there two times, the first: to attend the DETROIT HOMECOMING, an ingenious project that invited a group of "expats" back to the city for an intensive set of days with speakers, tours and information about what is happening now in Detroit.  And happening it is, the fast re-growth so apparent even from my last - Summer 2013 - visit.  I have been chronicling this on my Detroit Definition Blogspot with lots of photographs.

I returned again for almost a week in mid-November, photographing primarily. Busy with deadlines and a wealth of subject matter and images captured, not all of that trip is yet downloaded and thus not yet on the blogspot.  Suffice to say that each visit brings new encounters, new hope as I see neighborhoods cleaning themselves up, commercial streets reviving not only in downtown, and new buildings (the Wayne State Bio-Engineering Building with which I started this update) and businesses.  Detroit's bankruptcy resolved the day I flew in.  I am meeting residents with the fortitude to carry on in a city still in flux but with increasing faith in innovation, re-invention and community as progress continues, not without some barriers, but continue it does.

The beauty of the fall, combined with Detroit's first day of snow while I was there only contributed to the magic of this city.


Maya Angelou 1928 - 2014

Last, I wish to note this year's passing of Dr. Maya Angelou. A great American; a great African-American woman whose brave poem, combined the expressive art of Jean-Michel Basquiat, jump-started my writing career.

I had the infinite pleasure of working with Dr. Angelou and her office for the very first book that I created/edited, LIFE DOESN'T FRIGHTEN ME, where I paired her 1978 eponymous poem with Basquiat's powerful imagery for an illustrated book for youth on contemporary art & poetry.  LIFE still stands strong over 20+ years later.

In 2013 I received a surprise call from Dr. Angelou who asked if I would like to do another book with her.  So excited, I had planned to get to it this year.  I made a mistake, thinking that such a strong, creative individual who gave so much would live forever.  Her words still do.


Saturday, August 2, 2014

Back in the Saddle.....

Almost a year since my last post, this period of time has been wonderfully active, filled with several exhibitions, competitions and project advancement.

And now... as well, back to books!!!! (see below)

The exhibition at the Walt Disney Family Museum of the Tyrus Wong retrospective was amazing and my wall of large photographs of Tyrus at the beach with his kites, his family and community told a perfect story of this artist's last 40 years of creativity and activity.  My thanks to the late Diane Disney, Michael LaBrie and the WDFM for mounting such a beautiful, comprehensive and well-deserved show.  It was an honor to be in it and a pleasure to experience the depth and beauty of Tyrus' work.

I am happy to report that Tyrus Wong is now 103 (to be 104 in October) and still comes out to Santa Monica Beach to fly his kites and enchant everyone.

Based upon the prints and my photobook GO FLY A KITE: SATURDAYS AT THE BEACH WITH TYRUS WONG (available for purchase online through Magcloud and viewable at issuu, the New York Historical Society has asked for several of my prints to illustrate the concluding panel of their upcoming exhibition: CHINESE AMERICAN: EXCLUSION/INCLUSION 

In the Winter, I prepared for an exhibition at the new Leica Gallery Los Angeles, a beautiful modernist gallery/Leica store where even the cameras are so elegantly displayed.  The project was GRIDLOCK, my series of photographs taken from my driver's seat while stopped in traffic, primarily in Los Angeles.  I loved putting the work in a grid format and also prepared an accompanying small boxed limited edition portfolio, Gridlock: Tire & Tread. 

Ibarionex Perello, multi-talented writer, photographer, educator... interviewed me about GRIDLOCK for his international renowned podcast, The Candid Frame.  My interview is No 238 and was conducted on June 29, 2014.  

I was also interviewed by the Leica Camera Blog.

During these more major exhibition periods I continue to shoot more for my fine art architecture project, REVISIT.RENEW.NEW; worked at times in collaboration with fellow photographer, Martin Cox, on several commercial architectural shoots - fascinating design and architecture! - and shooting the beginnings of  an exciting new house by a major architect rising only a few houses away from me; several small group exhibits/projects; and taking the time to re-think how I approach my long-term project on Detroit, DETROIT: DEFINITION where I will visit with more focus in the Fall.

Architecture and design has always fascinated me, whether captured for exhibition and publication or shooting to involve my work in conversation with great design - residential, commercial and for hospitality (where we experience, i.e., hotels, restaurants, gathering places) - the environs of living has always been evident in the way I see and I am now in the middle of setting up a specific online portfolio/website for selected work, presently in an early "design" format at www.sarajaneboyers.com.

My more specific fine art/exhibition work remains my major website at sarajaneboyersphoto.com

BUT THE BEST NEWS!!!!  -- a return, finally to my writing.   Over the years I have been away - now almost 14 years since my last book, TEEN POWER POLITICS, was published -  I have been playing with ideas, thinking of new directions in the world of books for youth, my publication focus for years.  Of course LIFE DOESN'T FRIGHTEN ME, my first book, is still going strong 21 years after publication and award after award.  I created/edited LIFE, the initial design (the end polished result won a prestigious AIGA "50 Best Books of the Year" award), and married the powerful imagery of the artist Jean-Michel Basquiat with Dr. Maya Angelou's strong words of her 1978 eponymous poem. Good to try for that again!!!!  My sadness of course is the recent passing of Dr. Angelou, a loss for our entire country.

I look back over the 14 years, most specifically to TEEN POWER POLITICS, for the world has changed for all of us, youth especially since the beginning of the new millennium.  I'd like to bring this book back, refreshed, filled with our new concerns and hopes while acknowledging a different world post 911 on the darker side but also new approaches and attitudes - a greater acceptance of our global cultures, ethnic diversity - on the more positive side.  Civic responsibility is key and TPP was important in 2000.  I hope to make it relevant and a part of the instrument of change again.

I have so missed the world of publishing while feeling yet so lucky to finally feel a sense of confidence and belonging in the world of photography, my very very first love.  The return to writing, creating works and imagery now using my own photographic sensibility as well as the literary is exciting for me and I find myself with almost too many projects to explore, all the while retaining the visual expression - so much without words - that characterizes and will continue to characterize my fine art photographic work.

I return with the experience, the tools and best, the ability to incorporate my words with powerful photos and illustration.  This weekend is the annual SCBWI (Society of Children's Writers & Illustrators) Conference and although my deadline schedule is not permitting me to attend it in full, I have created a new "quickie" card and have already visited, getting back into the rhythm, and find what it is I can do now.... literary and visual.  A good moment!

Here is my entry "leave behind."

Wish me luck.

Friday, August 9, 2013

Busy Year....

Been so busy that I've not taken time to post.   Up now, my Summer Update to all of my photography projects and a nice notice on my first book, LIFE DOESN'T FRIGHTEN ME, now up in a "Best Books" display at the New York Public Library.  Still going strong after 20 years of publication!

The SARA JANE BOYERS PHOTO SUMMER UPDATE: http://us4.campaign-archive2.com/?u=013a28d9f024038bd399086bb&id=6f3fdb338f&e=9151fee9c4

Summer Fireworks, Detroit from the Detroit:Definition project

The Update includes information on the Tyrus Wong retrospective at the Walt Disney Family Museum in San Francisco that includes several large prints of my photgraphs of Tyrus and his kites out at Santa Monica Beach.  There is a beautiful exhibition catalog (see update) as well as my small book on the Kites for sale at the museum store and the catalog as well on Amazon and in bookstores.

WATER TO PAPER, PAINT TO SKY: THE ART OF TYRUS WONG opens next week, the 15th in San Francisco.

GO FLY A KITE can be previewed online at http://issuu.com/sarajaneboyersphoto/docs/sjboyers_goflyakite_1   

NYPL "Best Books" display featuring LIFE DOESN'T FRIGHTEN ME, my award-winning pairing of the eloquent words of Dr. Maya Angelou and the evocative art of Jean-Michel Basquiat.