March 2013



Boxeo Dos

Artist’s Statement

For the early years of my career, I used only black-and-white film and a 50mm lens. I enjoyed the discipline of learning to zoom with my feet. My work changed, however, when I took Robert Capa’s advice to heart: “If your pictures aren’t good enough, you’re not close enough.”

To get closer, I needed a wider lens, not a longer one.

For my trip to Cuba in 2002, I changed to a 28mm lens and color slides. I set out to gain access to people and their stories in a new way. I taught myself to wait until my subjects were comfortable with my presence, a discipline surely brought on by the proximity that a wide lens demands. Photographing with this purpose was just as much about not shooting as otherwise, the pause between the notes allowing the notes to be better heard.

This is the last series I ever shot in film. I bought a digital camera not long after my return from Cuba and have only used my film camera once or twice since. I miss the mystery of it, not knowing what worked, what didn’t, whether I had succeeded in capturing the image I saw before me.

I still shoot with a wide lens, though, because getting closer is what I am trying to do, always.




Abigail Seymour is a writer and photographer in Greensboro, North Carolina. As a photographer, her work has appeared in numerous national publications, including the New York Times, the News & ObserverMartha Stewart WeddingsThe KnotWeddings Unveiled, and The Bride’s Book. Her photo essay about the construction of a memorial gate made out of beams from the wreckage of the World Trade Center appears in a book published by the editors of LIFE magazine.

Abigail photographed regularly in the music and entertainment industry and has worked as a production stills photographer for Warner Bros., Procter & Gamble, and on the film Cabin Fever. Her portrait project about the diversity of faith traditions in America was the subject of a National Public Radio broadcast as well as a “Fresh Docs” workshop at the Center for Documentary Studies at Duke University. She recently photographed the cover of the CD Long Steel Rail by Riley Baugus, released by Sugar Hill Records.

A graduate of New York University’s photography and imaging program at Tisch School of the Arts, Abigail has also studied and lived in France, Egypt, Italy, and Spain, and traveled to Cuba, courtesy of an Emerging Artist grant from the North Carolina Arts Council. She has also studied at the Maine Photographic Workshops with National Geographic photographer Joe McNally.

For three years Abigail lived in Madrid, Spain, during which time she directed three plays, wrote several short stories, worked as a translator, and photographed throughout the country. She walked El Camino de Santiago, a centuries-old pilgrimage road that stretches 500 miles across the north of Spain. Her written narrative of this experience was published alongside essays by Anne Lamott, Maya Angelou, and Diane Ackerman in A Woman’s Path: Women’s Best Spiritual Travel Writing.

Prior to starting her photography business, she was features editor for Attaché, the in-flight magazine for US Airways. She is currently working on her first novel.

Abigail lives in Greensboro, North Carolina, with her husband Paul and their two children, Joaquin and Lila Mae.