• June 2014

The World Through the Eyes of a Millennial: Anna Paige Gibbs

Photographer and VCUarts sophomore Anna Paige Gibbs captures moments that take place in the world around her.

“I travel through the world with my camera around my neck, making sure I never forget the details of what I encounter,” says Gibbs, who started taking pictures at age 12. “Through my photos, I try to point out facets of the world that others may not see, which gives them meaning.”

Using handmade or unusual filters, abstract exposures, and discovering how to manipulate the buttons on her camera, Gibbs’ goal is to experiment and to authentically portray the unexpected.

Scroll down to view the “series of moments” that she captured as a high school senior in Arlington, VA, an international traveler in Israel and Europe, and a college freshman in Richmond, VA.

See more at AnnaGibbs.com


Lady Luck: This photo of a ladybug on a fork was taken when I was eating breakfast in Virginia Beach oover Spring Break 2010. I saw her flying around, and then she touched down—and I grabbed my camera. I showed my photography teacher, and he liked it so much that he encouraged me to submit it to the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards. I won the Silver Award in 2012.


Having a Ball: This shot is of my dad, Michael Gibbs, playing ball with my brother, Dylan. Using a long exposure I captured the beautiful day and how much fun they were having. I had to remember that moment.


Tour Eiffel: I spotted this image of the Eiffel Tower when I was walking around the Peace Memorial in Paris. I loved how elegant the Tower looked. Rather than moving around the glass to get a clear image of it, I pressed my camera up against the glass and used it to create the effect of an apparent double-exposure.

This is what I enjoy most about being a photographer. I look around, acknowledge where I am, lay one eye against the viewfinder of my camera and squint the other, and I photograph the moment in front of me. It’s the beauty of photography: It isn’t about anything but that single moment in time.


Bubble Boy: I was walking through the streets of Boston and this little, happy boy caught my eye. He was so captivated by the bubbles, and although he saw me taking his photo—he stayed laser-focused on his game. I admired his reaction.

I find pleasure in capturing instances like these when human nature takes over. It may be unspoken, or otherwise unnoticed. But with a camera around my neck, I get to document it all.


Stillness: This moment, to me, was defining for my dad and me. That’s him in the center of the photo. I was taking photos of other things in my surroundings such as birds, the sky, the sand, etc. When I looked up to see what else was around me, I was captivated by my dad’s silhouette and how it contrasted with the sky and ocean. Then that bird flew into the photo, I pressed the button and created this photograph.


Lunchtime: I walked by myself around Paris and passed this cafe filled with locals. I thought it was so iconic that I grabbed my camera, and as I did several patrons turned to look at me. I laughed and nervously walked away. Life, I am realizing more and more, is so precious. It is important to capture it, but it is equally important to live it—and be sure not to miss it.

Light Dinner: This photo was created using a long exposure, while running with a laser-pointer in front of the camera. It helped me draw out these “light people” in the photo. I like the simplicity of the importance of sitting down to eat dinner together. And I am also struck by the distance between the diners. I created it this way because I wanted to emphasize the distance that is often between two people—even when they love each other.

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