copyright James Chance What is vision?  What inspires us to take a closer look at what is around us?  Why do certain ideas grab us and take hold, while to others they hardly matter?

I ran across this article on, about Photographer James Chance winning POYi's new Emerging Vision Incentive grant.  It's a $10,000 grant that helps artists achieve an idea or vision.  The idea is reviewed by a board and they determine whether or not it is deserving of the grant.  James Chance's vision was entitled, "Living with the Dead."

James Chance ran across an article about how poor people were living in Manila's North Cemetery in the Philippines.  Chance will use the grant money to fund several trips to continue working on the project and documenting families there.  Officials said that his project was chosen because of the depth of the project.  Not only did it speak of poverty, how countries handle poverty, but generational issues, and public health as well.  I think it's fantastic that we still have grants and other financial support so that people can pursue their visions.  ARTICLE

Vision is defined in the dictionary as:

1.the act or power of sensing with the eyes; sight.
2.the act or power of anticipating that which will or may come to be: prophetic vision; the vision of an entrepreneur. experience in which a personage, thing, or event appears vividly or credibly to the mind, although not actually present, often under the influence of a divine or other agency.
4.something seen or otherwise perceived during such an experience.
5.a vivid, imaginative conception or anticipation.
6.something seen; an object of sight.
7.a scene, person, etc., of extraordinary beauty.
It has been my experience that vision in the art world is an idea that possesses your soul.  So often I have ideas that flit in and out of my head about great bodies of work that I could create, but there are few that truly keep me occupied to the point where I think about them constantly...and those are the ones that matter.
I think the second part of vision is the ability to act on your vision.  It's easy to jot down ideas but to actually start to create is the hard part.  How long did it take James Chance to be able to go to the Philippines?  But obviously this idea was important enough to him that he realized he would need grant money to help fund it.  Making a vision into reality is something that artists have struggled with for years.  How can you make others see what you have seen, feel what you have felt, and experience it as you have?
The third part of vision, and this is under the belief that you want to share this vision, is relaying it in a way that it is important to others.  Ideas that involve crisis, or social-economic struggles of the human race are themes that everyone wants to care about and relate to.  We all struggle, we all have hard times, and we can come together through that.  More abstract visions are harder to get across, at least to me.  And sometimes they are good in the fact that different people might see different issues in them.  For example, for some time now I have wanted to do a series of pictures of older churches in the South.  Why, personally?  I'm not sure.  Maybe it's because I see them changing.  Little back water churches have been over run by the mega church, and are slowly failing.  But when I take those pictures, what will others see in them?
Think about your own visions today, whether they are photographs, stories, writing, personal, career, crafts, or visions you have for your family.  Vision really is about hopes and dreams, as well as goals.  What is your vision?  How are you going to make it happen?