Photographer Cheryl Atkins At The Pratt

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By Ryan O'Grady

The Fine Arts Department and The Maryland Department at The Enoch Pratt Free Library have a photography exhibit on display until mid-July, 2012. It features the work of Cheryl Atkins, whose first solo show is titled “Viewpoints: Maryland Through My Lens.”


I sat down with Cheryl to ask her a few questions about her, her inspiration, and her work.

RO: What got you interested in photography and when did you start?
SA: I got interested in photography while studying at the Maryland Institute of Art back in the very late 60s. I lost interest in it and bought a camera about five years ago just for family photos. Since then I have become increasingly addicted to shooting and digital photography equipment.

RO: What is your favorite time of day to take photos?
SA: I don't really have a favorite as each time of day has its merits. Morning for the beautiful calm, midday is when lots of people are on the streets doing all sorts of interesting things and night for the atmosphere and drama.

RO: Let’s play the fantasy game now: if you could go anywhere in the world to take photos, where would you go and why?
SA: That's a tough one. I'd love to do the usual romantic spots in Europe like Paris, Madrid and Rome but if I had to pick one, I'd pick the wilderness of either our Pacific Northwest or the western provinces in Canada.

RO: Your Flickr profile says you have two dogs. What kind are they and where did the names Rio and Sofie come from?
SA: Wow! You're good at research! Rio is a Havanese and his full name is Rio Diablo (Devil River). We wanted a simple name with a Latin flair since his breed is from Cuba. Sofie is a Maltese and we named her "Sofia Bianca" because we wanted a name with Italian origin to compliment her Maltese heritage. Plus, she's very white and that's what "bianca" means. Two tiny fluffballs!

RO: What else should fans know about you and your work?
SA: I have really concentrated my efforts on photographing people on the streets for the past few years and didn't include these at the Pratt. If people want to check that out and much more, go to my Flickr, especially my "Driveby Shootings" set. I would greatly appreciate it. I also have to give a hat’s off to my husband and driver, Tom!

RO: Thanks Cheryl, and I hope this solo show is the first of many.
SA: I’m stoked! Thank you!


Below, Cheryl takes you on a brief tour of some of her work.

The photos are so beautiful! And I love that her fantasy photo-safari would be in my home: Western Canada. There are some stunning vistas out there.
Posted by: Jessica at 6/18/2012 3:30 p.m.

Here are some of the photos Cheryl mentions in the interviews: - Driveby Shootings set: - Approaching the Gauntlet: - Before Sunrise 1: and lots more at
Posted by: Teresa at 6/19/2012 9:07 a.m.

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