A Different Perspective – Personal Projects by Veterans


JANUARY 13 – FEBRUARY 11, 2023

Exhibition Opening: Saturday, January 14, 2023

Opening from 5 – 8 pm

Events are free and open to the public

Colorado Photographic Arts Center, 1070 Bannock St, Denver 80204


Rich Cancellare, Maggie Cubbler, Aaron Middleton, Eleanor Nesim, and Keal Vigil

A Different Perspective ⁄ Personal Projects by Veterans features a compelling collection of fine art photography created by 5 Denver-area artists who have served in the U.S. military. This unique exhibition is the culmination of CPAC’s Veterans Workshop Series, a five-month program of advanced photography courses provided to participants free of charge. Each project is intensely personal, reflecting each artist’s inspirations, life experiences, creativity and point of view.


Below are brief summaries of each photographer’s project, written in the artists’ own words.
Full artist statements are included in the exhibition catalog available for purchase below.

Navigational Decision Points, ©Rich Cancellare

Suffering in Beautiful Places
Rich Cancellare

While I was shooting this project, I took on the challenge of a roughly 40-mile backcountry adventure in Grand Teton National Park known as the Teton Crest Trail.  The remote nature of this trail necessitated carrying all my camera gear along in addition to food and extra gear for adverse weather.  We encountered other runners from as far away as South Africa, and the bond when striking up a conversation was instantaneous.  They had many questions and when I shared my vision of trying to capture the combination of the landscape and the sport, they were intrigued and excited.

Curbside Lager, ©Maggie Cubbler

300 Feet
Maggie Cubbler

I’ve recently returned to the United States after 10 years of living abroad in Europe with my son and husband. Having spent more than a decade surrounded by ancient castles, cobblestone walks, or quaint cafés, I dreaded the idea of moving back to the drab beige that makes up American suburbia. I loathed the thought of being surrounded by strip malls. Nevertheless, it is space and distance that has given me this sense of intrigue and curiosity about something we barely even notice.

The Diamond, ©Aaron Middleton

September Night Games
Aaron Middleton

When I was accepted into CPAC’s Veterans Workshop Series, I thought what better way to understand the art of photography than through a series combining my love for baseball and photography? Experiencing Major League baseball games is both relaxing and exciting, but besides the game, each stadium has unique characteristics associated with their respective city and home team. I began my personal project documenting baseball stadiums to capture the moments these places present during the regular season.

Jessica Bidwell, Navy, 2005-2019, ©Eleanor Nesim

We Have Always Been Warriors
Eleanor Nesim

It is vital to explore the complex and various reasons women serve, how we bring the world strength with our growing number, that we are a force to be reckoned with. This project offers the world a glimpse into the lives of us, female veterans, and honors us by showing our commonalities and unity, igniting a call to action. It draws attention to our ability to invoke positive change and our continued dedication to our passions. Look at us!

Little Audrey, ©Keal Vigil

Dogs on the GO
Keal Vigil

I really enjoy dogs and their companionship, relentless love, and dedication to us. Dogs are usually just silent passengers in our cars as we bring them with us on our daily adventures. This series focuses on these passengers, to observe how they react to the things around them as they sit in their vehicles and gaze at the ever-changing world around them. I wanted to try to see the world through their eyes.

Exhibition Catalog available for purchase through Blurb or at the Gallery.


Launched in August 2017, the Veterans Workshop Series gives local veterans with a passion for photography access to advanced photographic education free of charge.

Over a span of five months, participants learn to refine technical skills, hone ideas into a body of work, create a portfolio, write about their work, and present their projects to the community through an exhibition at CPAC.

Each artist was asked to consider a personal project and to explore a narrative that goes beyond a single frame. The exhibition represents a broad range of subject matter because each project is a deeply personal expression of the individual. For example, Eleanor Nesim uses photography to document the reasons why women, from a variety of backgrounds, have chosen to serve in the U.S. military and how they are often rarely encouraged to enlist. Keal Vigil captures dogs on the go in his area and through his image making has learned more about the playful dog community. As a mentor to the artists throughout this rigorous program, I have seen tremendous growth and development of each artist’s project. It has been my honor to work closely with them, hear their stories, and try to see the world through their eyes.

–Samantha Johnston
Executive Director & Curator, Colorado Photographic Arts Center


CPAC extends our deepest gratitude to our partners, sponsors, and donors for making this exhibition possible. Funding for the 2022 program was generously provided by the David & Laura Merage Foundation, JPMorgan Chase & Co., Prevent & Prevail, and individuals, with additional support provided by Reed Art & Imaging, Hahnemühle Paper, Metropolitan Frame Company, Digital Silver Imaging, and Sony.

We also wish to thank our wonderful workshop instructors: Frank Varney, Patti Hallock, Samantha Johnston, and Paul Weinrauch.

JPMorgan Chase
prevent and prevail logo
Reed Art & Imaging
Sony logo
Hahnemuhle Paper Makes the Difference
Metropolitan Frame Company
Digital Silver Imaging