Renée Louise Anderson (American Visual Documentarian)
I’m a bit of a hermit. I love speaking prose with strangers and photographing everything that catches my eye. I don’t consider myself a photographer, nor cinematographer; although I take photos and make videos; I’m more of a documentarian. Travel, whimsy, and love inspire me.
What’s your dream? What’s your passion?
I have “Pie-in-the-Sky Dreams”. I have this unrealistic dream of visiting every country in the world, with my wonderful boyfriend, and taking photos of every single thing along the way. I’ve traveled quite alot so far, but I have a long ways to go. I love meeting people and having adventures. I would adore a job or life experience where I can combine stability and merriment at the same time. My passion is creativity, and enjoying every moment of it. I’ve had hobbies come and go, but maintaining happiness through artistic mediums such as photography have always kept me sane.
How do you hope to use your love of creativity to influence the world. Do you find meaning in inspiring others, making a statement, putting a feeling down in film, or something else entirely?
I prefer to provoke questions and emotions rather than inspire. Instead of seeing a photo and saying “that’s nifty”, I would prefer someone to ask “what was she thinking?” or ” how does she feel and how does this make me feel?”…this ties in with my love of creativity. I don’t necessarily want to “influence the world”, but if I could encourage one or two people to think harder and deeper about something like a photo or painting, I personally believe the world would be a much more stimulating and imaginative place.
Describe your past and how it’s affected your artistic life. Do you feel like certain things lead to where you are or influenced your growth as an artist.
My past actually wasn’t terrible at all. My parents divorced when I was young, my sister and I would fly to England to see my mother’s side of the family every summer. This entirely sparked my interest and ability to travel. My dad moved a lot, but I didn’t mind. I got used to meeting people, then moving away. In an ironic way, this has lead me to become a very attached person, cherishing every moment I have with someone. Seclusion taught me to entertain myself. I would always write and draw, but I didn’t start taking photos until about 5 years ago when my grandpa gave me his old Canon T70. I would photograph everything. It was almost an escape into my own world that I had imagined in my head. With cameras and photo editing software, you can beget anything. My dad always kept me focused and always encouraged me, I attribute him with who I am today.
What in life do you observe and take with you? What drives your creativity? Can you talk about that for a bit.
I observe inconsiderable details; the charm of sunsets and thunderstorms, birds chirping, the way people hurt and the the way people love, the dimples in my boyfriend’s cheeks when he’s happy, the joy I receive when I see my niece sleeping in her crib like an angel, peoples’ goals and expectations, negative space, shadows, and whispers. Emotions and heeding small details drive my creativity. Sometimes you have to pause and acquaint yourself with trivial things like emotion, passion, shame, and well being. When I feel a certain way, I want to express that through a photo.
You say you’re a hermit. Do you like people? Do you find something in solitude that you can’t elsewhere? Does this play into your work?
I love people. Friends and family are number one to me. All my life consists of at the moment is work and school, 7 days a week, pleasing people and obtaining a successful level of customer service. A bit of isolation and time to BE is all I need sometimes. I usually end up taking self portraits, or photos of nature and landscape when I am alone. I enjoy it, most of the time. I find my best ideas, photos, sketches, (etcetera), emanate when I’m in my room or in an empty forest, by myself.
You told me that you love to travel. Where would you go? No limitations. What would you do?
Everywhere, literally; every country in the world. I would spin a globe, eyes closed, and choose one place to start. I would take photos, make videos, hike, explore, eat local food, enjoy culture, visit tourist areas, and find secret spots.
Here’s a beautiful short film showing Renée’s love of travel:
Who are some of your favorite artists?
My favorite artists are people that are amazing at what they do- but maintain a sense of humbleness. Brad Sloan and Mandy Sloan (married) are photographers from Oregon. My friend Ashtin Paige creatively photographs her life and progress through her music career. I’m also a huge fan of the classics- Annie Leibovitz and Ansel Adams. Also, Tim Burton has a beautiful mind.
Here’s a short stop motion film by Renée:
What music (currently) inspires you to create?
Websites to find more of Renée: