By Janee Law
For a family trip to Italy in summer 2012, Commack’s Alissa Rosenberg bought a Nikon point and shoot camera to document the trip. She soon fell in love with the world of photography.
“My camera broke right after the trip and when I went to go bring it back, I decided to buy a real DSLR and I came home with my very first one,” Rosenberg, 46, said. “I remember sitting down, opening that box and thinking to myself, ‘Now I’m going to have to learn how to use this.’ ”
Nearly five years later, Rosenberg has mastered the art of photography. She’s attended classes and workshops at Berger Bros Camera in Huntington and workshops at Hofstra University, while also brushing up on the craft through reading, and watching YouTube videos.
“I can’t say that it was just natural,” said Rosenberg, who’s been working at the Oldfield Middle School and Harborfields High School as a speech language therapist for 14 years. “There’s so much that’s technical about it that evolves, but it was a huge learning curve and I really threw myself into it.”
Forty-six of Rosenberg’s creative photographs are currently featured in a solo exhibit at the Harborfields Public Library (31 Broadway in Greenlawn).
Rosenberg shot a variety of different photos, including portraits, perspective shots, landscapes, augmented reality and water drop.
Since her talent emerged, Rosenberg has won several awards.
One of the photos that garnered an award is “A Winter’s Tale,” which captured the Suffolk County Vanderbilt Museum in Centerport during a snowstorm. With the ground and trees covered in white snow, the photograph provides an overlook of the boathouse and water. The photo received honorable mention in “The Long Island Life” juried exhibit in July 2016 at The Art League of Long Island in Dix Hills, and won first place in the Berger Bros winter contest in 2015.
In addition, her “Perfectly Imperfect-Augmented Reality” photo series won third place in the “Lifestyle/Portrait” category of the International Photography Awards 2016.
As part of her water drop photography series, the image “Pour Me Some Happy” won a certificate of recognition at the Brooklyn Waterfront Artists Coalition’s exhibit, which was juried by the assistant curator at the Museum of Modern Art. Using a macro lens, the image features an image of a smiley face being refracted in a water drop from a solo cup.
Since she picked up photography, Rosenberg said, she has found her creative outlet.
“It challenges me because it’s not like you could just pick up a camera and take pictures like National Geographic photographers, you have to learn how to do things,” she added. “Every step of the way, there’s learning that goes on and it’s very exciting to me and it makes my brain think. The whole thing is one big, huge exciting adventure.”
Now that her photographs are being featured at the Harborfields library for the month of February, Rosenberg said that having her art work on display in the community where she works is extra special to her.
“It is a huge honor,” she said. “Four and half years ago I didn’t even know I wanted to take pictures. So, for me, I feel like this is a huge marker in my life, to have a solo show like this and to look around and say, ‘Wow, I can’t believe that I did this.’ ”
The exhibit is on display for the month of February. A closing reception is scheduled to be held at the library on Feb. 27, 7-8:30 p.m.