Not knowing she was battling cancer, I was stunned to learn of the passing of ASMP’s past president and educational director, Susan Carr. I first connected with her at the Passion and Profession photo retreat weekend in Lake Geneva, IL, many years ago. Her beautiful fine art photography of interiors that she presented that weekend, struck me as project infused with much love and care.
That she passed away on Labor Day seems eerily fitting. She was a tireless worker to improve the business lives of professional photographers. There is much irony. She was a champion for copyright education and awareness as a way to protect and maintain standards of professional photography. She seemed to work with the same zeal as those who advocated for better social and economic conditions for American laborers in the 19th century.
Her amazing and impressive contributions to the Strictly Business 2 symposium back in 2008 is why I rejoined ASMP. Her contributions were clear and sophisticated. Her commitment to the importance and necessity photo business education in the digital age was tireless. During her tenure as educational director, I acquired a whole new and positive perspective about an organization that I’d dropped out of for many years.
Susan’s encouragement and personal invitation to me to both do a keynote presentation to the ASMP National members meeting and to become a regular contributor to the ASMP Business Blog, were pivotal in my entering into the ASMP educational tent. And for that I am personally grateful.
During the period when we had lots of speaking event planning details to discuss, I seemed have had a knack for always reaching her at the end of the day while she was out walking her beloved dog. As a currently pet-less dog-lover, it always gives me a warm feeling when people are able to include their 4-legged friends in their work life. That mental image of Susan easily talking photo business while her dog frolicked at the dog beach, is the memory that I will hold onto as I take in the news of her passing with deep sadness.
To anyone who is involved in the business of photography education, she is– and will be for many, many years to come–the high standard to which we should always aspire. She did it all superbly well. It didn’t matter if she was writing, teaching, presenting, organizing, networking, or advocating, she always did it with superb professionalism and always with grace and good humor.
She will be greatly missed.