Last week I had the opportunity to listen to Sally Mann give a lecture in the city. I walked away amazed at the stories and the images from her life that she shared with us.
What struck me was how her work, her art, and her life, are as tangled as the roots of a tree below the surface. They grew out, intertwined as one, and you cannot separate them from each other now.
As I have been wrestling with what it means to be an artist , she taught me that it doesn’t have to be complicated or abstract. It is as simple as documenting the daily things and the people we love that make up a life.
Sally Mann’s body of work grew out of where she came from. The farm where she grew up and eventually raised her children was the place that she created all of her most famous images.
She had to be intentional about capturing these images of their daily lives together, but she didn’t have a grand concept. She let her love instruct her art.
I want to create from that place. To capture what I love simply because I love it, and not get caught up in what I am trying to say. My voice will emerge, and I have to trust that.
I tend to put a lot of pressure on myself to do amazing things, maybe instead I can do things with amazing love and let it be what it will be. The rest will come from there.
Here is an image from last summer at my grandparent’s summer cottage in Canada.
Taken with love. From a place and a family that has helped shape me into who I am becoming each day.
Over Thanksgiving our family (along with a few other families we love) took a little vacay to Maui.
Here are some personal snapshots of the people I love from a week that restored my soul in so many ways after such an amazing 2011 wedding season.
Canon eos-1 35mm. Fuji 400h.
And if you want to see more of me + A, we had a fun little session with Wendy while we were on the island.
I want to revamp some of the photos in my office and I can’t decide which of these to frame. I love them all.
So thankful. Merry Christmas everyone!!
Just kidding. It’s not that guy. Though I do wonder how he manages to be so fabulous.
It’s my husband.
And today is his birthday.
It’s impossible for me to let this day go without some sort of public declaration of my eternal love and gratitude for this man.
Because you see when I am running a million miles an hour, stressed out, and wrapped up in making this business all that I want it to be, he holds our world together. He’s cooking dinner AND doing the dishes. He’s vacuuming. And putting up the Christmas lights – in the dark – with his headlamp on.
He really is the most interesting man in the world. How does he manage to be this amazing and yet so low profile? He’s not like me in so many ways – he doesn’t need constant affirmation. He is content with what he has. He knows how to appreciate a fine whisky – without the e.
And so even if the world does not know he is the most interesting man in the world. He is.
And I am so incredibly lucky.
Love you, A.
With all my heart,
Okay. Bad pun. I KNOW IT.
But seriously, I’m in love with these 35mm shots on Kodak Portra 400. And with Richard Photo Lab for creating this kind of magic.
I just got back from the most rejuvenating week of my life in Maui – I needed it so badly. We went with Aaron’s and two other families who have been spending Thanksgivings together since Aaron was in diapers. They are our other family.
These are some shots from another of our annual get-togethers – this time it’s just a few of the “kids” – for the Half Moon Bay Pumpkin Festival.
I am so thankful that these two couples are in our lives, they keep me sane and they remind me how blessed I am.
So even though these are a little late and we’re past fall and into winter, I had to post these.
Ryan is working on a new record and I vote this for the cover. So hipster.
Or this one.
I never used to understand when photographers I admired told me to shoot for myself… “to do more personal work.” My business is me. Is my relationships. Is interwoven into my life. It all felt personal to me.
As I look through these images I took a few weeks ago of my grandparents at their summer home in Canada, I understand.
In the midst of a week where I am feeling overwhelmed by every little mistake I make and each new problem to solve, these images push me forward. Past my weakness and failings, they remind me that I am an artist.
They remind me that photography is more than business. It is documenting the things that we want to hold on to. To make them beautiful and keep them safe. These images speak to me. They say Keep me. Protect me. Share me. And I will live forever.
Life is heartbreakingly short. I want my family to live forever. The truth is they won’t. But my love for them in these images, that will. And I pray that it honors them. Forever. It’s all I have to give.
I doesn’t feel like enough. There’s too many already lost, that I never had the chance to honor. These are for them too. With all my heart.
all images shot on Canon eos-1v, fuji 400h + fuji neopan black and white