The way it was; the way it is

¤ Reception for "The British Beat," an exhibit of photography by Jane Sindell¤ 8 to 10 p.m. today and Saturday¤ Paradigm Theater, 116 W. Main St. in Oak Creek¤Free¤846-5137

— Tonight's one-person photography show by Jane Sindell will demonstrate the difference between the perceptions of youth and the view that comes with age and distance.

"The British Beat" will be a retrospective of sorts as Sindell shows photos she took in England, her home country.

These days, Sindell lives in Oak Creek, where she owns The Mugshot coffee shop and bakery, but she spent her childhood in Watford, a half-hour train ride from London.

"When I grew up there, you could still get into fields and wooded areas, and I took a lot of landscape photos," she said. Then her parents moved to an area on the border of South Wales, where Sindell rode her horse and took her Pentax camera into the nearby Forest of Dean.

"It's an old, old forest," she said. "I would ride my horse and look for places I wanted to photograph. I looked for natural beauty and color.

"It's very green in England, which I'm very aware of now that I don't live there, but there isn't much wildness there. There are places where you can feel like you are away from civilization, but it's an illusion."

In the forest, Sindell followed ancient, overgrown pathways that once were well-used roads.

"There is a lot of history in that forest, and now when I go back, I think about the connectedness I have with that," she said.

Sindell revisits photos of England she took in college with a new eye and knowledge of Adobe Photoshop. She adjusts them until color fields separate into distinct pieces.

"I'm a painter also, and I love the way I can get that painterly feel," she said. "It makes the photos more abstract."

Among the landscapes, Sindell also will showortraits from her life in England. This is her first show in South Routt.

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