Sandra Louise Dyas Photography


Monday, December 28, 2015

Brandon Ross - Down in the Space of Your Heart

Song 11) Down In The Space of Your Heart, written by Brandon. Ross. Played by Nate Bassinger (accordion), Craig Ziegenhorn (electric guitar), Anton Hatwich (bass), Johnathan Crawford (drums), Brandon Ross (guitar and vocals), and Kid Congo Carlini (train wrenches, and flanger).

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Black Mountain College

The Short Life and Long Legacy of Black Mountain College

This kind of philosophy about learning and creative thinking alines with my own. Maybe we should start a new school.....

"Everybody learned from everybody. Although the faculty was technically in charge, students were involved in institutional decision-making. It was also left to them to decide when they were ready to graduate. (Most never did.) There were no course requirements, departmental restrictions, grades or degrees. The school offered, at least initially, a fairly broad-based liberal arts program, with art itself, modernist in mood, at the center, available to all, not necessarily as a professional pursuit but as a means of unlocking creative thinking in students in every field."

Sunday, November 15, 2015



"The goal of much performance and Conceptual work of those years was the dematerialization of art: an attempt to separate art from precious materials and pretentious institutions so that it could exist in more pure, less compromised forms. Photography was understood and utilized as a functional medium meant to produce an affectless record, without the taint of style or authorship."

This essay was found on

Chris Burden, Trans-Fixed 1974

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Where Songs Live by Kim Ruehl, Photos by Sandy Dyas

The roots music authority -- NO DEPRESSION magazine 2015 - out now. 

"Where Songs Live" by Kim Ruehl, 
Photos by Sandy Dyas - photo spread (Jeffrey Foucault, Kris Delmhorst, Dave MooreLiz Preciado Genell and more).

"These photographs capture in silent images the life and scenery that could just a as well make a song. There is music in those fields and storefronts and back roads, songs about lives that are waiting to be sung." Kim Ruehl. --- Thrilled to be apart of this collection of stories, photos, music, and love. Thank you Kim Ruehl! Thank you Grant Alden, Thank you Ed Maxin!

Jeffrey Foucault, near Iowa City, Iowa: Photo by Sandra L. Dyas

Sunday, September 27, 2015

The Sweetheart Rink - Photographs by Bill Yates

The Sweetheart Rink: Photographer unearths incredible album of portraits taken inside a rural Florida roller rink in 1972

Moment in time: Photographer Bill Yates spent from the autumn of 1972 to the summer of 1973 taking snaps inside the Sweetheart Rink

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Craig Hickman's Magical Trick for "Scanning" B/W Film!

I have been researching film scanners for several months. Then, a few nights ago my friend and artist COLIN IVES told me about a photographer he knows == Craig Hickman. And Colin is spot on, I love Craig's work -- and today I discover he has a genius and simple way of converting b/w negatives to digital files using simple methods. All I need is a macro lens! 


Margaret Atwood | Louisiana Channel

Margaret Atwood | Louisiana Channel

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

The Interview Project by Jacob Luplow

One of the biggest reasons I love teaching is because I am rewarded and enriched by young, passionate students. If teaching is good I believe it is a two way street. Give and Take. Even if some of my students don't start out being very motivated, I see it as my challenge to open up their world. Living with art in your life is the only way to really live.

Yes, art takes on many forms and everyone is an artist. I am not a traditionalist, more of an open-ended experimentalist, willing to turn my direction midstream if need be. Being around young students is a pleasure, it inspires me, it changes me and it suits my nature of never wanting a day to be exactly like the day before.

Jacob Luplow, a Cornell College senior this year, interviewed me for his The Interview Project last winter (hence the wool hat on my head). So here you are -- I am flattered greatly and am happy to share this project with anyone who is willing to read it! Thank you Jacob for being the kind of smart, savvy student you are.

The Interview Project by Jacob Luplow 2015  Click on the B/W photo of me in my hat to read the interview.

Thursday, August 13, 2015


Easy Ed aka Ed Maxin published this little story about family and music. 

Family Albums from Thompson, Romero, and Watkins

Thank you Ed, for the mention of my name in your story on No Depression - appreciate it! Iris DeMent was in NYC at the Lincoln Plaza recently and this is where the story starts.... It is one big family of music lovers and the musicians who make the music.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Midwest Summer: Light and Warmth - Group Exhibition at the Cedar Rapids Museum of Art

Midwest Summer: Light and Warmth -- this show is up until September 13th, 2015. My photograph of "JoAnn, Roses & Thorns" was selected for this fabulous midwestern art exhibition.

Monday, June 8, 2015

The Fountain

The Fountain from Sandy Dyas on Vimeo.

LeAnn Erickson and I have been having a long-time video conversation using short, under one minute videos from our everyday lives. This project called Homegrown Stories began in 2013. We recently decided to use our iPhones rather than point and shoot cameras. 

Tuesday, May 26, 2015


Opening Reception
Friday, June 5, 5:00 - 7:00 PM
Join us for a free public opening reception to celebrate the opening of Midwest Summer: Light and WarmthExpressions of Home: The Watercolors of Lela Powers Briggs and changes to The Restless Spirit: American Art from the Collection. Local artists featured in Midwest Summer will be in attendance.

Midwest Summer: Light and Warmth

June 6 - September 13, 2015 
JoAnn with Roses & Thorns, Sandra L. Dyas 2014

Monday, April 20, 2015

T. Geronimo Johnson Interview in Poets & Writers

T. Geronimo Johnson is featured in the newest edition of Poets & Writers Magazine (March/April 2015). Nimo, a published writer is a visiting professor at the Writers Workshop at the University of Iowa this year. I was asked to photograph him last fall. He is a most compassionate and gentle soul. I truly enjoyed our few hours together making these portraits. His second book Welcome to Braggsville was published in February 2015.
T. Geronimo Johnson, Iowa City, Iowa (Sandra L. Dyas)
T. Geronimo Johnson, Iowa City, IA (Sandra L. Dyas)
T. Geronimo Johnson, Iowa City, IA (Sandra L. Dyas)
T. Geronimo Johnson, Iowa City, Iowa (Sandra L. Dyas)

Saturday, March 28, 2015

5th Biennial Dubuque Museum of Art

My photograph, Sean Thomas Boyt, near Iowa City, Iowa is being exhibited in the large group show at the Dubuque Museum of Art's 5th Biennial.  
March 14, 2015 - June 14, 2015
Sean Thomas Boyt, near Iowa City, Iowa (Sandra L. Dyas Photography)
The fifth DUMA Biennial features the finest works of art by some of the most talented artists in a 200 mile radius of Dubuque. Generously sponsored by Premier Bank and Marella fine gift shop, this home-grown exhibition highlights the quality and variety of artwork that is currently being produced by the artists of this area. Special thanks to this year’s juror Jane Milosch, Director of the Smithsonian Provenance Research Initiative, Office of the Under Secretary for History, Art, and Culture. Milosch is a past curator at the Smithsonian American Art Museum’s Renwick Gallery, the Detroit Institute of Arts, and the Cedar Rapids Museum of Art. The 2015 DUMA Biennial was the most competitive call for entries yet with 176 artists submitting 508 works of art. Of those, 48 artists and 59 works of art were selected by the juror for the exhibition.

Monday, March 9, 2015

12 x 12 online PHOTO - Interviews Stuart Pilkington about his many ONLINE PHOTO PROJECTS

LUCKY ME. I have been a participant in quite a number of Stuart Pilkington's ONLINE photo projects and hope to continue my luck. The photo of Joan in Her Turquoise Dress, near Bellevue, Iowa was taken in February 2009. This was my "People" photo assignment for The 50 States Project, created and curated by Stuart.


Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Week 8 -- Kitchen Renovation

After awhile, you wonder if you still will know how to cook. I have been using a little plug in tea pot that heats up water and a microwave, both loaned to me generously by my friend Katy S. The upper cabinets arrived last week. This week Gordon and Ben installed the upper cabs and hooked up the sink. The sink is useable! The pulls and knobs will be going on the cabs this week, too. I am hoping the extra hole for the little faucet will be drilled soon. The countertop people installed the specchio white quartz top meticulously. LOVE it. However, they forgot a hole.

We made a change of design plan on Monday. I decided I wanted a more open kitchen with fewer cabinets. Instead of the large maple cabinet in the center which would have housed the range hood, we will order a Kobe range hood - it will be visible and I know I will like that better.

The library shelves and desk below are gorgeous. Maple wood, nice and light, airy. I think the warm tones go really well with my green lower cabs and the beautiful paint color.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Stuart Pilkington Interviewed on 12 x12

Great interview on 12 x 12 with my internet photo friend, curator & photographer Stuart Pilkington. My photograph of my friend JOAN in Her Turquoise Dress is featured in the interview. It was part of an online year long series called The 50 States Project in which I represented Iowa. 

More about The 50 States Project
12 x 12 Interview

Chis Offutt Interview with Terry Gross

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Continued Renovation of My Kitchen - March 1st

Here we are! Still not finished but closer. I had thought everything would be in place and the workers would be gone by the end of February, not true. The green cabs have been installed on the bottom and the top maple cabinets are being installed - this began on Thursday of last week.

I love the tones in the maple cabinets and I really like how light they are. The countertop was a puzzler for me. I changed my mind over and over again and finally decided on a quartz top with little sparkles in it. Happy about my choice! It is beautiful, durable, easy to take care of and it looks so perfect with its surroundings.

Note my expert painter - Sarah Taft - she transformed the living room, hallway and kitchen with her magic. We spotted and decided on the color of paint in less than 5 minutes. The color is COPEN BLUE from Sherwin & Williams. Love it.

Thinking about a backslash and maybe using pretty Mexican hand-painted tiles....

When you view the things that seem to in my living room.... remember these things will be moving to the kitchen at a later date. One hopes very soon...

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Day 2 of Moffitt Kitchen Renovation

I must say it is truly exciting but like everything that is exciting comes the stress, too. It is a challenge to navigate my house. My routines have been disrupted. The day begins at 9am for the men and therefore I am up, too.

Today the kitchen wall came down and the new space is really wonderful to see. More light will come in because there will not be the wall that blocked it.

Last night I was invited over for a scrumptious butternut squash soup and roasted vegetables with a yogurt mint sauce, cheese and good bread, wine and wonderful company. Matthew created our supper and Jamie and Matt and I enjoyed the evening together. There are perks in this upheaval of space.

Sort of the color my lower cabs will be

Monday, January 12, 2015

Moffitt House Renovation 2015

This project has grown, morphed, changed as time as went by. Not really knowing for sure how it would turn out, I knew I was ready for a big update for my tiny galley kitchen. When I bought this house in 1992, first thing Mom said was "You should tear out this wall and expand your kitchen." I however liked the charm of the little nook space (later painted an incredibly beautiful blue with the help of Melanie).

So it goes. 23 years later and now my Mom is gone... I hope she can see what is happening in this tiny space. I think of her everyday.

Mark Russo showed me a kitchen he had designed and it had dark red laminate cabinets -- I was sold. First I wanted the upper cabs to be made from my Dad's cherry lumber (we made a bed - or I should say Steve Bullard built a beautiful cherry bed for me from that wood) but it was so complicated to figure out how to get the lumber, etc -- that I made the switch to maple cabinets on top and a beautiful green laminate on the bottom cabs. I love GREEN.

 The countertop has been a big dilemma. Still as of right now, no choice. Stainless steel was my first choice. Too pricey so I decided on Marmoleum. This is a product that some of you might remember from growing up. It was used for floors and countertops and still is. It was invented before laminate. I grew up with it. It uses the stainless steel edging around it. Problem was I had already chosen the green bottom cabs and there just is not a good "color" in my mind, to go with the cabs in Marmoleum. The closest I can come is black with little white stuff going thru it. But I think it may be just too dark. Thoughts?

Where the Microwave Used to Be

Tiny apartment size gas stove -- anyone?
I am getting new appliances and for the first time in my life, a dish washer. The city of Iowa City has loans for people who live here and are below a certain income. It is low-interest. Now that my mortgage is finished (YAY!!!), I am going to begin a new loan. It is now or never, I am not getting any younger.

Will keep you posted maybe if I can on the process.

Note the extra amazing beautiful painting of Birdie, my cat, by Gabrielle Karras