Martha Bauder was recently invited to exhibit two of her war reportage photos for a Veterans Photo Exhibition in the Springfield Art Museum in Missouri. The exhibit is called Veterans’ Views.

“Veterans’ Views is a juried exhibition highlighting photographs taken by members of our nation’s armed services and relating to their military experience. The primary goal of the exhibit is to raise awareness of our veterans’ experiences during service to our country.

This veterans photo exhibition features 60 photographs from 40 veterans across 12 states. Veterans from the Navy, Army, Air Force, Marine Corps, Army Reserve, Missouri National Guard, and the Army Corps of Engineers submitted photographic memories of service tours ranging from 1946-2017, reaching from Missouri to Japan.”

Martha Bauder is a retired EMT, and we spoke with her a bit about her background and how she became involved with this art museum photo exhibit.

How would you describe yourself as an artist (photographer, digital artist, mixed media, etc.)?veterans photo exhibition at springfield art museum in Missouri

I consider myself a digital photo artist – I love photography, and my photos have improved greatly in the last few years, but not so much that most of them would stand alone. I almost always turn them into digital art of some kind, even if it’s nothing more than enhancing them through Photoshop. I love to takes pieces of different photos and composite them into something else, just to see what the final imaginary image would look like.

What has been your experience working with ArtisanHD?

I had my first experience (in person) with ArtisanHD this week and I was very pleased. I was given a tour by Mike, and he spent some considerable time with me explaining the best ways to print and display the photos that were chosen for the Springfield Art Museum’s exhibit. I can’t wait to see the final products!

What’s the story behind your work being chosen for this exhibit? 

I saw an ad requesting submissions to be considered for the “Veterans’ View”, a veterans photo exhibition that will be showing at the Springfield Art Museum from July through November.  All photos are by veterans from their deployments and they chose two of my favorite photos from my deployments.

Be Happy a Veterans Photo Exhibition at the Springfield Art MuseumThe first one, “Be Happy”, was a spur-of-the-moment photo, one of those stop-shoot-keep walking photos that somehow always surprises the viewer with its intensity. The situation was that we had had a mass casualty incident at the Combat Support Hospital (CSH) in Iraq.  I was an emergency physician, with about 25 patients, including women and children, with blast and gunshot trauma after their village had been shelled. One of our CRNA’s (nurse anesthetists) was taking a break from the OR between cases and I happened to see him sitting under the “Be Happy” sign and thought the juxtaposition of what we were experiencing vs. the message of the sign was stunning. With just a little point-and-shoot camera, I captured one of my favorite images of any that I’ve ever shot. 

The second image, “Even Blisters Get Treated,” is from the CSH in Afghanistan where I was stationed. Afghan workmen were adding a room to the hospital, working all by hand (shovels and trowels, no heavy equipment), and one of them happened to have a minor injury to his finger. One of our OR techs took it upon himself to treat the worker and I happened to be walking by (again) and captured the image.

I submitted both images and was surprised that both were accepted, considering they were both unposed and shot with a pocket camera. 

Will you be visiting the exhibit in person?

There is an opening reception at the Art Museum on July 21, which I would like to attend. It will be an honor to see my work displayed among the works of fellow veterans.

Martha’s photos will be printed by ArtisanHD. The veterans photo exhibition will be on display at the Springfield Art Museum, July 22 – November 26, 2017.

UPDATE from Martha:

“Just got back from Missouri, went to the opening reception of the exhibit, and I want to thank Artisan for doing an outstanding job of printing and having my prints framed and shipped. I didn’t get a chance to see them before they were shipped to the exhibit, so I was anxious about how they would look, but they were beautiful and garnered many positive comments. Thanks!!!”