Fine Art Photography Daily

DB Waltrip: Of Mud and Men


©DB Waltrip, Red Dirt Road

In 2014, Alexa Dilworth and I had the good fortune to juror the festival exhibition for Slow Exposures. The experience of spending time in small town Georgia with Southern photographers was profound and I made many meaningful connections at the event. One of the images that Alexa and I selected for the exhibition was of two boys covered in red mud on a Southern road. I was thrilled to finally get to meet the photographer, db Waltrip, at the opening, as I had been following her insightful work on family over the years. Coming full circle, db ‘s project, Of Mud and Men, was the 2016 Paul Conlan Prize Winner, which results in a solo exhibition to be presented at the 2017 Slow Exposures festival, opening September 15th. This honor follows in the footsteps of Eliot Dudik, McNair Evans, Ashley Krauschinger, and Preston Gannaway.

As part of this installation, db will include recordings of her son’s voices & story-games, objects to support the idea of play, and an artist’s book, made out of cereal boxes which includes photographs, text from conversations heard over the years, and pages from vintage children’s books that are sewn, glued, stapled & taped together.

db Waltrip is an artist and photographer living on the Gulf Coast.  Raised in a family that fostered creativity, she began photographing at the age of 11.  Her high school and college years were shaped by independent study and undergraduate course work in fine art photography.  After receiving her Bachelor’s Degree she traveled the American South with a Nikon F3HP and an Australian Shepherd.  During that time she worked with Maria von Matthiessen on her book “Songs From The Hills.”  After settling on the Gulf Coast, she spent seven years as Artistic Director and Photographer for “The Spotlight”, a bi-weekly news and entertainment publication, while quietly continuing her fine art work.

She has been documenting her personal journey of Motherhood for the past 15 years.  Her work has been exhibited in competitions, galleries, journals, blogs and magazines across the country including SlowExposures, South x Southeast Photo Magazine and Gallery, Soho Photo Gallery, A. Smith Gallery, Santa Fe Photographic Workshops, Center for Fine Art Photography, Photosynthesis Gallery, Lightbox Photographic Gallery, Elizabeth Avedon’s blog, Lenscratch blog, Le Journal de la Photographie, and she was a Photolucida: Critical Mass finalist.  She is an active member of Shootapalooza and a founding member of World Cyanotype Day.  She writes for South X Southeast photomagazine and teaches occasional workshops.


©DB Waltrip, Andalusia, AL

 Of Mud and Men

 Of Mud & Men is an ongoing documentation of my boys and the lives they lead in the rural South.  I am interested in what it means to be rural, white, southern, male and Christian in a culture that values none of the above.  I look for specific, yet universal Boy-Moments; the relationships they build, the messes they make, the games they play, the ways they grow, the stillness, the chaos, and the ways they move through the spaces they occupy. This project is a celebration of the strength and creativity, and the victories and failures that come as a result of boys being free to be boys. – db Waltrip


©DB Waltrip, Black Dirt Pile


©DB Waltrip, First Day of Summer

ar:  “Hey momma, can I tell you something kinda gross?”
 db:  “No.”
 ar: “Ook, well can I tell you something kinda funny?”
 db:  “OK.”

©DB Waltrip, Sunrise South Rim


©DB Waltrip, A Tale of Two Brothers


©DB Waltrip, Real Heroes Do Dishes

wt: “Hey Momma, how do superheroes fly?”
db: “It’s pretend.”
wt: “No I mean what do they do to fly?”
db “It’s pretend.”
wt: “No I mean how can they fly if they don’t have any wings?”
db: It’s pre-TEND.”
wt: “No I mean what mechanism do they have to lift them off the ground?”
db: “IT’S. PRE. TEND.
 wt: “No I mean…”
AR:  “Wil! It’s pixie dust, ok?!”
wt: “Ok.”

©DB Waltrip, Andrew & Frockletray


©DB Waltrip, Legos & Lincoln Logs

wt – “Hey Momma, sausage is kinda like cologne to me.  You know how Daddy sometimes doesn’t like cologne?  Well, sometimes I don’t like sausage.”  


©DB Waltrip, Daddy Leaves Early


©DB Waltrip, Road Trip


©DB Waltrip, RISK

wt: “hey momma, i think it was a miracle when moses went up to mount rushmore.”


©DB Waltrip, Fresh Lemonade


©DB Waltrip, Spring Fed


©DB Waltrip, The Fury

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