When I was very young, my mother told me I was adopted. Since then, I have been searching to find out who, and where I come from. For many years, I pieced together information from stories my family shared with me, as well as documents from the time of my adoption. I often wondered who my birth family was, not for wanting to replace the family that adopted me, but because of a curious nature that could only be satiated by finding out who I am, who brought me into this world, and what came of them? My search came up with few answers as I began to give up hope.
In 2010, my search was reinvigorated by a change to Illinois’ adoption laws, which allowed adoptees to obtain their original birth certificate. Since then, this change in the law, and access to online DNA services have given me many of the answers that I sought. But, for now, the search continues.
“Coming Into Focus” tells the story of my adoption through both the stories of my adopted and birth families. This is done by bringing together photographs I have created for this project, family photos from my childhood, and the many important documents from my adoption. Eventually, as my search and this project come to a conclusion, I plan to complete this project as a book, in which I will pair images from this series with essays. Together, these components will blend visual art, and written autobiography in a way that will make for a unique storytelling experience.