Tara Wray: Too Tired for Sunshine
“Drawn from daily life and wanderings, the photos explore loneliness and isolation, as seen through a lens of absurdist dark humor. Too Tired for Sunshine puts a fine point on channeling pain into creative expression. We are both witnessing the process and experiencing the result. Tara Wray takes us on a visual and emotional journey with disarming humor that lets us lean in to the sadness.” – Yoffy Press
Tara Wray may be too tired for sunshine, but that’s because she has been busy. Earlier this year, Yoffy Press published her book under the same title. After the release of the book, which “documented the beauty, darkness, and absurdity of everyday life, as seen through the lens of my own struggles with depression”, Tara received an outpouring of support and she has used that platform to help those with depression by offering a place for collective creative expression. She hopse to reduce the stigma of mental illness and open a dialogue about depression and art with her site, Too Tired Project. Photographers are encouraged to share their stories related to mental health by tagging #tootiredproject on the Too Tired Project Instagram.
Tara shares, “The Too Tired Project was recently invited to create a pop-up slideshow exhibition at Review Santa Fe 2018. We had an open call for one week on Instagram, inviting interested photographers to post an image with the hashtag #tootiredsantafe and we received nearly 700 submissions. Now the Too Tired Project aims to bring pop-up slideshows to cities across the US throughout 2019, leading up to and culminating in the release of a curated book of work selected from submissions to the Project, which will be published by Yoffy Press in 2020.
Slideshows throughout the country will follow the same format for submissions: an open call via Instagram. It’s an inclusive idea. Everyone who submits to the shows in their city will be accepted in hopes that people will come out to support each other and hear inspiring stories of the power of photography to help combat depression.
The shows themselves will simply require a projector and a dark room, so they can be held just about anywhere. In each city, either myself or a local point person will moderate the show, taking questions of the audience, and making available signed copies of Too Tired for Sunshine.
For more information, or if you would like to bring a slideshow to your city, I’d love to hear from you”.
Tara Wray is a lens based artist in rural Vermont. Recently she launched the Too Tired Project, which aims to help those struggling with depression by offering a platform for collective creative expression. Her photobook, Too Tired for Sunshine, was recently published by Yoffy Press.
A second book soon to be released is a photo/poetry collaboration to be published by Cleveland’s Belt Publishing in Spring 2020. “El Dorado Freddy’s is a collaboration between poet Danny Caine and photographer Tara Wray that employs the tools of their respective art forms to explore issues of nostalgia, parenthood, and personal identity through the lens of the Midwestern chain restaurant and mall food court. A unique hybrid of 30 poems and 30 pages of photographs, the book explores a part of American food identity that’s ubiquitous, yet widely dismissed or ignored in literature, food writing, and art.”
She is a regular contributor to Vice, BUST Magazine, and is photo editor of the literary journal Hobart. Her work has been featured on Washington Post, Vice, Archive Collective Magazine, La Presse, Humble Arts Foundation, Burn Magazine, and Aint-Bad Magazine, among others, and is held in collections at major institutions including Yale University, University of Notre Dame, Dartmouth College, the George Eastman House, and the Amon Carter Museum.
Born and raised in Kansas, Wray graduated from NYU with a degree in documentary film. She has directed two feature length documentaries: Manhattan, Kansas (Audience Award, SXSW 2006; Film Society of Lincoln Center) and Cartoon College (Vancouver 2012).
Too Tired for Sunshine
My work is rooted in documentary surrealism. I’m drawn to intense natural light, small details, and use color to evoke mood, atmosphere, and emotion. I’m especially compelled to document to the mundane and absurd aspects of life, and animals, especially dogs.
In Too Tired for Sunshine, I present what I see, as I see it, and my struggles with depression color that vision. – Tara Wray
Posts on Lenscratch may not be reproduced without the permission of the Lenscratch staff and the photographer.
Alain Laboile: Summer of the FawnJanuary 22nd, 2019
Jeremy Dennis: Finalist in the 2019 Aftermath GrantJanuary 18th, 2019
Leif Sandberg: Beyond the MirrorJanuary 11th, 2019
Jake Naughton: When We Were StrangersJanuary 2nd, 2019