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Meet Donna Dunlap of Picturing Art in Grand Prairie

Today we’d like to introduce you to Donna Dunlap.

Donna, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
Initially, photography began for me as a creative outlet of which I was able to soothe inner emotional pains. A sort of art therapy. Over the last 20 years, I’ve learned that not only is my art a form of therapy for me, but it provides a way for me to give to and bless others.

After creating photo art for 15 years, I started my business Picturing Art in 2015 with the initial focus primarily to offer photography and video services. However, over the past five years my work has developed and evolved into something much more skillful and complex with a storytelling niche.

While Picturing Art is my business, I also have a very clear mission to serve others through it. As my life has had its ups and downs with both valley and mountain top experiences, my story can be and has been an inspiration to others. We as human beings may not have the same stories, but what we do have in common is our ability to authentically connect with and inspire others through the sharing of our personal stories.

The mission of Picturing Art is ‘Framing the Art of Storytelling’.

My specialty is the fusion of photography and video creating unique and one of a kind storytelling portrait videos; Living Stories by Picturing Art.

Has it been a smooth road?
As a creative, I had to learn the ‘art of business.’ Naturally, I would much rather create than run a business.

However, I’ve developed a sharp entrepreneur mindset and honed my business aptitude through services and education offered through organizations like the Women’s Enterprise Program of WingsDallas.org, and the Frost Bank Business Training Program.

It has been challenging to create and provide custom services while also constructing a solid entrepreneur foundation. However, when I see the amazing impact that my living stories have on my clients as well as others, I’m reminded of the true mission of Picturing Art.

So, as you know, we’re impressed with Picturing Art – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of and what sets you apart from others.
Picturing Art is Photography & Video Storytelling.

My work is unique and custom including creative services for individuals, families and high school seniors. I also work with business’ and entrepreneurs helping them with their brand marketing to effectively communicate their story with maximum impact.

My specialty is the fusion of photography and video to create my unique and one of a kind storytelling videos; Living Stories. This is the heartbeat of Picturing Art.

What are Living Stories by Picturing Art?

Let me tell you the story of a black woman given up as a baby by a white mother in the 1930s. Now in her 70s she recently discovered she has a white brother. I was able to record an interview with the woman prior to her meeting her brother. We planned that I would capture their first meeting on video. Editing the interview, video footage and portraits, I created a heartwarming film that tells their story. This family reunion was just the beginning of their blessing. I’m told their relationship continues to flourish today, and the film I created will tell their LIVING story for generations. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ImSNwRy1QuE&t=9s

Then there’s Rene’s story. She had worn a wig for over 20 years to hide her bald scalp caused by alopecia. She was sick and tired of hiding behind the mask of a wig and to help give her the courage to shed the wig, she wanted to debut her Living Story film as her “coming out” if you will. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0jxCSjJcJ-8&t=150s

There are even more inspiring stories including Kamisha’s rise above poverty to become a successful lawyer in Collin County Texas. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ySdXh-706yg&t=65s

On a more personal note, with the recent death of my mother, I wanted to create a tribute to her; a story of her legacy. Creating my mom’s Living Story was a very raw healing process for me. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RFaMcKb8GmQ

I’m not aware of any other photography or video companies in the Dallas/Fort Worth area providing this type of artistic multi-media storytelling.

My work is highly customized and my clients appreciate and value the personalized one on one customer service that I provide including the amazing experiences and as well as quality finished art products of which they can cherish their living stories as tangible heirlooms for generations.

Do you look back particularly fondly on any memories from childhood?
I’ve learned to cherish and embrace so many of my childhood memories. Some through photographs and others just by closing my eyes and reflecting over my life. One memory in particular, I recall playing on my families enclosed front porch while listening to The Beatles, A Hard Day’s Night playing on the record player. This memory and all the others I try to recount and tell to my children and grandchildren as they are my legacy. This is why I love what I do through Picturing Art; Framing the Art of Storytelling. It’s about legacy and cherishing memories.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
All (8) images are created by Donna Dunlap of Picturing Art. Except for the one image of me, my personal photo is created by Telethia Hurley Photography.

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