It’s set to be an empowering exhibit.

Beginning May 18, the Logansport Art Association will feature work by former Logansport resident, Megan Thorne, who describes her photos as unconventional.

A self-proclaimed feminist, Thorne’s work depicts a storytelling technique that focuses on feminism, gender roles, self-esteem, and fashion. Specifically, many of her photos target young girls in the pre-teen or teenage years.

“Being young is really hard,” said the 24-year-old who resides in Evansville. “Girls have social media now, which is so prevalent, and it makes it easier for them to see women who are perceived as having perfect bodies. But they are actually being photo-shopped. So, even if it’s subconsciously, a girl may begin to think ‘I should look like this, but I don’t,’ said Thorne.

“It’s important for them to realize how much of that is fake and unrealistic. Some women may appear to have ‘perfect bodies,’ but they’re not attaining bodies in a healthy manner.”

Therefore, her photos capture the positive aspect of finding one’s own self, “to find comfort in your own body,” said Thorne. “So hopefully young girls will say that ‘I am beautiful just the way I am,’ even if wearing no makeup.”

Thorne’s artistic interest in photography was piqued during a Cass County 4-H competition while attending Franklin Elementary School. “It became an outlet for me, a way to express myself,” she said. “My friends were doing 4-H” and upon some prodding by her mother, Tracy, who was on staff at Franklin, Thorne picked up a camera, shooting pictures of her pets and nature. “It’s all I wanted to do.”

But when her family – including her mother and father, Michael, who was employed at Logansport Memorial Hospital – decided to relocate to North Carolina, Thorne lost touch with photography. It wasn’t until her senior year at Henderson County High School in Kentucky that her passion was rekindled. During an AP art class, Thorne’s teacher handed her a Canon T5i camera.

Preparing a portfolio for her class, she went around the high school building taking photos of architecture, band instruments, and anything that sparked her interest. Receiving high marks for her project propelled her forward and into pursuing a career in the world of art. Along with earning a journalism degree from the University of Southern Indiana (USI), Thorne majored in art with an emphasis on photography as well as a minor in art history.

During her senior year of college, she received the Efroymson Bridge Year Fellowship Award, which provided her with a grant and the opportunity to create work during 2020 for a solo exhibition in 2021.

All of her coursework prepared her for becoming the storyteller she is today.

“I am an opinionated woman,” she said. “I express myself and photography gives me a platform to tell my stories. My camera is my arm. I don’t know what I’d do without it.”

And she hopes the images that she has captured will be a welcomed addition to Logansport.

“We’re always looking for new, up-and-coming artists…,” said Jane Williams of the Logansport Art Association. “We like to highlight local people as well. She happened to be my neighbor when her family lived here. I thought this might be a nice opportunity to reconnect her with this community.”

Plus, said Williams, Thorne’s work continues to inspire and intrigue viewers throughout the state. So far, her work has been exhibited at six galleries in USI, New Harmony, and Evansville, among others.

Next up will be the Logansport exhibit. Williams said people are welcome to visit the art association at 424 Front St. between 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. Tuesdays and 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Thursdays from May 18th to June 5th, when a wine and refreshment reception for Thorne will be held at 5:30 p.m.

For individuals who would like to attend during alternate times, please call the LAA at (574) 735-2915 to set up a time and day.

Reach Kristi Hileman at kristi.hileman@pharostribune.com or 574-732-5150

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