The Art & Soul of Phillip D. Woods
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Thus began a project which became an artistic, spiritual, emotional, and a bit of genealogical journey for me. Sharing the photos first with my Uncle Percy Baynes and Aunt Dorothy in Washington, D.C., then with my parents in North Carolina, to have them identify many of the subjects. Trying in some way to restore dignity and proper respect to some beautiful folks who represent a small segment of a largely ignored people.

Taking the risk of trying my first works in oil when several suggested, "Take some painting classes first..." or asked, "Phillip, why on earth would you want to paint that?"  Having visits from many of the subjects in my dreams as I began to capture their images on canvas and masonite. And above all, feeling that it all was meant to be – no chance accident that I been led to the Library of Congress website.

Five years later, I am happy to present to you this group of works, "My People." This is my tribute to the mothers, fathers, cousins, and elders who first taught me about courage and faith, the importance of hard work, and living a life devoted to service. I have tried to capture these remarkable "everyday" people in familiar settings, at church and at work. Perhaps you will see someone who reminds you of an aunt or someone from your church, or of a time from your childhood. I certainly hope so.

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