Artist Statement The fallen over trees and the deforestation of the land has been lost on the forest floor, 100-year-old trees fallen and forgotten. Now vines and briar patches flood out the saplings struggling to fill the void of what came before them. Even thru the changes of the woods, the saplings know nothing else but survival after change. Lymantria Dispar , otherwise known as the Gypsy Moth, is an invasive species of moth. Lymantria, in Latin, meaning ‘destroyer’ and Dispar, ‘to separate’. The Gypsy migrate and breed devastation and death of forests throughout North Eastern America. Similar to the spread of a forest fire, if left untouched, the spread of the moth’s destruction of trees will be unstoppable. Thus, the marking and cutting of hundreds, yet often thousands, of infected trees. As a child, the woodlands felt unchangeable and eternal to me. The PA State Game Lands, which literally crept up to my back doorstep, were my spiritual place, my safe-haven. It was not until the lumber companies were hired to come in and cut the infected trees, that I realized their deep worth to me. This is when, two years ago, I decided to start this project. Simultaneous to the planned destruction of the woodlands, my personal and family life was full of deteriorating change. From drugs to divorce, our tight-knit family was crumbling. At that time, photographing the woods became the only sign of stability in my life. Change, naturally, feels unacceptable. It’s terrifying, unfamiliar, and often creates an emotional tidal wave over us. Thru documenting the slow destruction, and even slower revival, of the nearly 100 acres of PA State Game Lands, I began to sense more than just devastation. I found beauty in the destruction and rebirth of the reformed woodlands. My emotions have been refined through the lens. My eye, acting as the mediator between my heart and reality, brought solace. As I saw the landscapes develop into a series, I knew I had found sanity. My woodland safe-haven had never truly left me. Physically, yes. But emotionally it still offers what I had felt in my youth. Through change we find survival. Our survival becomes beautiful.