Journal of Rehabilitation Research & Development (JRRD)

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JRRD Cover Art Winner 2010,
Richard Prosapio

Richard Prosapio snapped this award-winning photograph, “Roots,” during a recent visit with his daughter in Canyon Lake, Texas. The photograph depicts a tangle of cypress tree roots alongside the Guadalupe River.

He is a first-time participant in and gold medal winner of the 2010 National Veterans Creative Arts Festival in the Art Division, Black and White Photography category. Primarily self-taught and a humble man who describes entering the competition on a “lark,” Prosapio was stunned by his victory.

“I didn’t really see the picture until I got [to the Festival] and looked at it through other people’s eyes,” said Prosapio. “When I compared this picture to other people’s black-and-white photographs, second and third place finishers, as a matter of fact, I didn’t think it was too red hot. I thought it was a fluke.

“Then I backed up and began to look at [the photograph] objectively. There is something magical about that photograph that I didn’t see consciously, but I saw it unconsciously through other people’s eyes.”

For Prosapio, participating in the Festival was an emotional experience. He describes the best part of the experience as meeting a “wide range of people with great hearts, great imaginations, great abilities, and a whole lot of courage.”

“Meeting people who are struggling, people who have struggled with their lives, and not just combat veterans by the way, but people who are noncombat veterans who in a sense have struggled in a different way in their lives—meeting these people has been a real eye-opener and heart-opener,” said Prosapio.

Prosapio is an Army veteran and resides in San Pedro, New Mexico.

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