This past Friday marked a personal milestone for me.
It was my last issue of being the photography editor for WWVM.
The magazine lives on of course, and will continue to be published; albeit under new management.
I think that most of us would bemoan the fact that when change happens and we aren’t on what we consider the “good side” of it, we would feel entitled to vent and complain that the powers be didn’t give us our due or that “fate was against us.”
I don’t feel that way at all.
As a matter of fact, I’m completely grateful for what I was able to accomplish and be a part of in the years that I have been the photography editor for the magazine. I helped a few new photographers find audience with our readers, promoted West Virginia in a positive light, and learned more about this great state than most people will in a lifetime.
I have seen and been in places both remote and untamed, met the people who would claim them, met with creators of hope in communities that most thought had seen better days; only to find new life from those who have dreams and a fresh vision for the future.
After reminiscing over my career as WWVM photography editor, I can’t think of a single thing I have regrets over, save one- stories that I wanted to continue telling, but can’t continue to in the position I once held ; having to be content to let others take over the narrative instead.
As I gave final notes on my final issue before we went to press, I was reminded of the words that the then publisher Harry Price gave me when I asked for beginners advice starting out on my journey with the magazine.
“Clayton” he said ” Be prepared for when this becomes a work of the heart!” Even then, I ‘m not sure I fully grasped the implication of all this would come to mean to me; but I understand the power of it now.
That being said, I hope the legacy I leave behind will show that I made a difference to the magazine, and that I’ve touched readers lives as much as they’ve touched mine.
And no, I do not intend on choosing to mark this moment in saddness; but to embrace it and all that I’ve become by being a small part of it all. This is but a chapter, not the end of a book.
Thank you all for your support and I look forward to seeing what comes next!
Best wishes to all,