Hello and welcome to Focaldreams,

I have been photographing for over twenty five years; my interest began as a medium to simply chronicle my world travels, scientific expeditions and philanthropy.  I eventually turned to the more diverse aspect of photography as art.  My landscape work reflects my exploratory spirit using color, black & white and also infrared.  Those moments in whatever wilderness unfold before me are communal and restorative. 

In addition to my landscape work I have ventured into portrait photography over the last several years to document the more intimate aspects of life.  Much of my work has been done with local communities of color.

My work has found a home in internationally recognized publications such as Black & White (Winner of the "People's Choice Award" Single Image Contest), National Geographic's #portraitsofstrength, Getty Images, the Royal Geographic Society Magazine, ND Magazine, Mammoth Hunt (Harpers Collins) and Popular Photography.

My pro bono work can be found on the Golden Leaf Education Foundation, Portland Japanese Gardens, and Kukatonon Children's African Dance Troupe web sites.

In addition to those publications I have been juried into several exhibits including the Blue Sky Gallery 2017 Viewing Drawers,  the Regional Arts and Culture's Portable Works collection, multiple jury exhibits and blue ribbons at the Lake Oswego Festival of the Arts (2012, 2013, 2015), New York Center for Photographic Art "Juror's Selection", Portland Open Studios, NewSpace Center for Photography,  the Portland Bridge Festival, and The Great Photography Weekend with the late great Galen Rowell - 3rd Place Scenic.

I have also published my first book “Cambodia Awakening,” a photographic essay as interpreted through the eyes of Khmer Rouge survivors as part of the Golden Leaf humanitarian team.

To get a better sense of my process I have also created rich media content - if you wish to take a few minutes to be transported you can view it at http:/​/​www.​focaldreams.​com/​Publications

My commercial clientele include Adidas US (including work exhibited in Herzogenaurach, Germany) and other local Portland area based businesses such as Tempo Cycling and Tsaicomms. I do portrait and smaller wedding venues.   

Influencers I greatly admire are James Natchwey and Sebastiao Salgado.  Two unflinching, brilliant human beings who have brought human suffering to the level of art, and by doing so, strike both compassion and controversy at their subjects.  

I welcome comments on my images and please feel free to respond to my blogs and you can follow me at Facebook/Focaldreams, Twitter at @focaldreams, Tumblr/Focaldreams, Instagram/Focaldreams where I am regularly enhancing my social media presence.


Sandra K. Banister
Photographer
Humanitarian
Global Citizen