My name is Jonathan Banks and “Journey Brave” is my mindset.
Life is an awesome journey, full of exploration and discovery. We have to be brave enough to encounter the experiences that will inspire reflection and growth. We have to find enough courage to maintain the hope, vision, and tenacity it takes to become the best person we can be. It’s challenging but I’m beginning to see that it’s worth it.
I’m 34 years old. I am a father. I’m an artist. I’m a business owner. Balancing fatherhood, business, and creative energy is a skill that I am consistently working to master.
My career is still in its genesis and I am making strides to create work that positively impacts my community. I’m a self-taught photographer. Reading books, asking questions, and taking thousands of pictures has helped me develop an eye. I respect the art, science, and history of photography and I understand that there is so much more to learn. When opportunity hasn’t been given to me, I’ve created it.
Still photography gives us a chance to slow down and appreciate the details of the world around us. It’s about capturing the essence of a subject, finding its truth, and displaying it in a way that inspires ideas, invoking conversation. I am a poet. I am fascinated with metaphors, similes, and allegories. My camera gives me the opportunity to transform the literary tools of Juxtaposition and allegory into a visual expression of art.
My work is currently being featured in the Carroll Street Café, an amazing restaurant planted in the heart of Atlanta’s Cabbagetown district. The collection, entitled “Concrete Jungle“, compares and contrasts civility with primal instinct, freedom with captivity, and development with destruction. I juxtapose images taken at the Historic Zoo Atlanta with images of the city’s infrastructure turning the collection into an allegory of Urban Renewal. The metaphor is that we are the animals trapped in the captivity of industry and infrastructure. There is an appearance of freedom; however, the environment is man-made and highly regulated. In the confines of these walls we find security, we become domesticated, civilized, comfortable, docile. My work poses the questions: Who are we as a collective? How do we relate to our environment? What impact does growth and development have on the cultural identity of the indigenous people in the city as well as the new residents?
I am rooted in the lessons of life. My art speaks to my culture, the people in my community, those who inspire me. I’ve had to deal with a lot of twists and turns, peaks and valleys, wins and losses. The sum of my experiences has positively impacted my artistic development. My motto is “As you journey through life… Journey Brave”.
Thank you for joining me on this journey. I appreciate every second you spend reflecting on the images I capture. If you are interested in purchasing any original pieces please contact me directly at Contact@journeybrave.com . To view the Concrete Jungle Collection Click Here. My goal is to generate enough funds to work full time in various communities, telling the stories of the people, places, and things that make them what they have been, what they are, and what they are becoming. If you, or anyone you know, would like to fund a project please contact me directly.
*Shout out to “D-Unit” for grabbing my camera and convincing me to pose for the cover photo of this article.
Here are some images from my showing at Carroll Street Café.