Snapshots was composed between 2000 and 2005. I was asked to write a set of character pieces for the piano. Searching for a unifying theme, I gravitated to the most obvious and basic fact about the piano – its division into white notes and black notes. Thus was born a set of pieces in which each in some way pits the white notes of the piano against the black notes. Originally composed in three distinct sets, the Snapshots were combined into a larger whole in 2009 as the result of a recording project with the pianist Markus Pawlik. The set may be performed as a whole, or subsets of the Snapshots may be performed at the pianist’s discretion. Two of the original sets were composed as the result of commissions from the Virginia Music Teachers’ Association (2000, numbers IV, V, VII, X, XI, XIV, XVI, XVIII, XIX) and California Music Teachers’ Association (2005, numbers VI, VIII, XII, XIII, XV, XVII, XX, XI, XII), and they were composed to address a range of styles and technical challenges. The middle set was composed for the high school level of the Renee B. Fisher Competition (2003, numbers I, II, III, and IX) and explores a range of technical and musical challenges at a higher level.