You Are My Star

It is OK to cry and spread your arms wide
To weep at my side, these are not things to hide.
It is OK to say how much you love me
To ask me to hold you and squeeze you tightly.
It is OK to paint and to play with soft toys
To sing and to dance, to be not like other boys.
It's OK to tell me how you're feeling,
I will never tell you that you are a weakling,
I'll never say, man up and be different,
I just want you to be you, whoever you are.
And I want you to know that you are my star. 
I just want you to know that you are my star. 

Keep. On. Going.

Last year, I became so focussed on where I wanted to be, comparing myself to the photographers who have been doing it for far longer than I have, who get to travel the world and take these amazing photos of impossibly wondrous scenery.  Who get paid to do every single job. Who do nothing else but immerse themselves in a world of cameras and photographs and art. 

Time for a reality check! I am a mother - a full time mother of two children under five! IT IS NOT EASY. I have suffered from chronic sleep deprivation, given 150 billion percent to being the best mum I can be, which in turn has meant that I have also spent time worrying and berating myself over things; do the children watch too much TV, do they eat well enough, am I attentive enough, the list goes on. 

Then we moved house. No wait, first we moved countries. With a four month old baby. Then we moved from a flat we were renting to a house we bought. Then when my son was 14 months, I fell pregnant again. And was really sick. Then having two children was a complete shock and such a huge challenge and a strain on my mental health. And then we moved house again. 

And amongst all of that, I have consistently given myself a hard time for not having a booming photography business. What was I thinking? 

So, now that we are settled, and staying put. And finally, I have a bit more time (and sleep), I can start to absorb this wonderful and chaotic journey I have been on, both as a mother, and an aspiring photographer. 

I am starting this year gently, with photographs of the people I know and love. And then, there are a few things planned for later on, such as a wedding ceremony of a close friend, an exciting elopement story, a maternity shoot, and a few other projects. 

And I shall just go with the flow. Enjoy the adventure and the learning. Study faces and lighting, practice different environments and situations. Critique my work honestly but kindly. And just Keep. On. Going. 

Heart matters.

Sometimes it's not about being what other people want you to be, but following your heart and your bones and being who you want to be. 

I was driving along today, and I was saying to myself, don't pretend to be this person, this photographer who acts the way I think photographers should act. Bouncy, extrovert, confident... because that's just a load of rubbish. That's not who I am. And how am I supposed to take photographs that have heart. That have meaning. That have life? How am I going to do that if I am not being me? 

I'm not the most confident or loud person. I like to quietly think and ponder. I like space and privacy. I like simplicity at a slow pace.  I'm a dork. I'm goofy. I am the most un-witty person in the world. And I am the best at spoonerisms. I'm passionate and genuine and I cannot lie. I love like nothing else. Love is my best. 

So from now on. I'm being me. I am being true to myself and my creative heart. And I hope that will show in my photographs. I'm going to photograph what I love the most. What feels right. And I'm going to push myself. And I am going to try really, really hard to believe in myself. 

Forget about perfection. I'm striving for originality. Feeling. Heart. Creating what inspires me. 

 

 

 

 

 

Rufus

How have you become such a lovely, grownup boy, Rufus? I have watched you grow from a bald baby, to a top trump playing toddler, to an awkward eight year old, to a kind, confident and clever 11 year old. You seem so close to being a young man, yet surely, so far away...

And as you finish up the last months of junior school, I feel you are ready for your next adventure. And before we know it, you will be more independent. Growing taller and further away from the boy you are now. I hope you will keep some of him right here with you. I know you will.