Friday, December 26, 2008
"Praise the Lawd !!!!"
My grandmother was and still is a big influence in my life. I use to go to church with her in a small town called Thomaston, GA. I remember sitting in the pew with a pocket full of peppermint candy while she stood at the entrance of the church. She wore a white uniform with white gloves, white shoes and a silver ribbon pinned to her with the words Usher. The church didn't have central air and it would get scorching hot. The flies were terrible and some of the times the water fountain in front didn't work. Everyone would fan themselves with these paper fans with the image of Martin Luther King or Jesus on the front. I never knew the words to any of the hymns that were sung, and still today I couldn't sing you a verse. But the feeling that I got back then when the choir sang , even as a kid made the hairs on the back of my neck raise. I thought it was the Holy Ghost touching me. From time to time I would be a little mischievous horse playing with my cousins. We would laugh at the way the Preacher spoke. When he preached he would sometimes make this sound as if he had the hiccups. My grandmother would see us laughing. She had a way of gritting her teeth to let you know you were going to get it when you got home. Believe me when I say I had my share of whippings, but I know in the end it was all out of LOVE. So as a tribute to Catherine Smith I've taken photographs of small country churches that reminds me of the small church she attended. It's an ongoing project, here's a few. Hope you enjoy them as I enjoyed photographing them. Sometimes while I'm shooting I can here the old choir sing and then I break out into my Reverend Strickland imitation minus the hiccup and say, "Praise the Lawd, Praise the Lawd !!!!!"