Hi friends, I have some exciting news—I made a thing!
This year and more of pandemic life really challenged me in so many ways. From truly dark days to lots of really big learnings about myself and the world. Through it all, as our world really shrank, I got in a practice of taking my camera on walks with me in my neighborhood, capturing details of nature I found all around me, sometimes in unexpected places.
It gives me so much joy to marvel at the beauty of nature. Every footstep and glance around is an opportunity to appreciate the resilience and ever-changing landscape we live in. It also made me realize how important bathing ourselves in nature is for our wellbeing.
I’ve created a calendar of these little moments! Calendars are $33, include US shipping and can be purchased here. They will only be available for purchase through Nov. 28.
this is my third post in this space this year but it has been a decade (in my mind) since I last posted (oh april, what a trip you were). re-reading my last post brought tears to my eyes.
because Grace died at the end of April – only 20 (short) days later. one of the (many) gifts the pandemic gave me was to spend the last six weeks of Grace’s life together. i want to share more about that time. but that is not why i am here today.
this is going to be a bit of a scattered. i’m just gonna let it flow, ok?
i see on wordpress that i’ve had this blog for 10 years! but really i only consistently wrote and posted here the first 3 years. the summer after Cal and I broke up, i pretty much quit creating film photos for myself. and then i got a job where photography was a part of the work and that furthered my separation from the medium. i still love photography, i hope to practice it for the rest of my life but the romanticism of those first 3 years! oh how i wish i could go back and reclaim it.
but we can’t go back. we must keep learning and growing and becoming our future selves. i would do so much differently. mostly, i would take better care of myself. but we only know what we know, when we know it.
i still have so much to learn. and so much to unlearn.
anyway, today, i decided i would take a social media break. i’ve tried this before with low levels of success. i’ve recently been working on keeping my promises to myself. i’ve started the couch to 5k program again. it’s my second or third time doing it. and i’m truly committed to it. over a month ago, my therapist strongly suggested i exercise daily again, for my mental health and i agreed with her but it took me two weeks to start. once i did, oh i feel like it’s already saved me from myself. my anxiety has been out of control. running gives me an outlet. i’ve been weary about working out again because i had previously lied to myself regarding why i was doing it in the past (cough, weight loss). i’m done lying to myself or treating myself badly so i look good to other people. i sacrificed myself too much and too many times in pursuit of pleasing other people. no more of that.
back to the social media break—today i’m realizing how much of my time and attention has been sucked up by it. so this is one of the places i’ve decided to turn to instead. i’m striving to spend my time creating art and figuring out how i can be useful to the world, instead just being a consumer.
i’ll see you again soon, dear old blog. do i have any readers left? if so, get ready for lots more rambling and random photos of my life.
it’s good to be back. grateful to still have this place to live, especially after all these years.
it’s hard to talk about this moment without calling it by it’s name.
we are in the midst of a pandemic.
and the best way we can combat it is to stay home. we must cut ourselves off the from each other to survive. as a result, the pace of our society has slowed. it still churns, after all capitalism does not stop, not even for death.
my days have changed dramatically in the last month. i now work from home, my commute for the last 6.5 year has been about 6 miles each way. now it is less than 60 feet. at night the freeway outside my windows gets almost silent, as if we are on an indefinite snow day.
it’s strange… to be a part of something collectively but also to be so separate. I am literally alone all the time. my only companion is grace.
and thank goodness for grace. i am still shocked that she has been with me so long… we are past our 14th anniversary together. i was the tender age of 26 when i took her home, i am now 41. i did not process the longevity of this commitment at the time. but the longer we have been together, especially now that we have a place of our own… oh how I treasure our time together. i am forever grateful to share my life with her. she may very well be the love of my life. i have deep gratitude that we get to share these days. no other being would i rather be in quarantine with.
one routine i’ve found joy in is a daily outdoor walk, run or street dance. I usually take a camera with me and capture some of the plant life in my neighborhood. spring is just beginning here and the plants are busting out their sunday best. I try to capture their beauty. sometimes i bring a prism to add a rainbow to the mix.
not since i was a teenager did i spend so much time in one place. i’m really enjoying it. i get to learn the flora and fauna around me and watch it change and grow everyday. it feels both like an honor and a gift to watch all this life unfurl before my eyes.
i do not want to dwell on the future right now. it is a tapestry unbeknownst to us. one we will make as we go. sadly, we will not all make it.
i hope i can continue to find these small, beautiful moments, no matter what is ahead. life is short and long. it is complex and simple. i hope to continue to hold it in my hand, in my camera and be both astonished and beholden to it.
hello new year. my, that whole thing they tell you about time accelerating as you age. it’s so true. i’m actively trying to appreciate each day. to stay present but whoosh, it just keeps rushing past.
i’m trying out that 1 second a day app, as a way to remember the actual days and the tiny things that happen. i guess i’m using it how i used to use film photography.
oh the things i ache to do but struggle to prioritize.
i miss shooting 35mm film daily but i don’t see the world as i used to. can i go back? did becoming a professional photographer ruin my joy in the hobby of it? the cost can be prohibitive but it’s so much better than digital. the feel of it is so special.
i don’t know what to do with the images that i have made on film these last few years. i used to blog them or share them on social media but now i overthink it too much and since it takes me years or month to develop it, it just don’t seem timely.
last month, i took advantage of a holiday sale and i made these postcards with some of my favorite images i haven’t previously shared online. i am trying to create art again without having an agenda. or rather, without shutting myself down. my mind is a battlefield sometimes.
this is a good place to share that journey. i don’t want to make any promises because i’m a big dreamer and sometimes i get overly ambition and struggle to follow through.
maybe writing this old blog is a hobby i return to this year. only time will tell. but the thought of it makes me smile.
i feel the muse stirring. i want to create. i’m brimming with ideas of new personal work. it’s exciting. i haven’t felt compelled to really create anything for myself in a long, long while, aside from a photo here and there.
The funny thing about blogging is the questioning of the practice. I question that I have anything to share… to which I realize we all have something to share. To live is to share, right? We are taught it early… share, share, share. But as you age, you become self-conscious of what you share. You question everything, right down to the space and resources you use up to exist, and thereby your necessity or joy to share.
Today was one of those days I described in my last post. The I don’t want to get out of bed type. But I did, eventually. And I made it through. I was a productive citizen.
The best part of my day… Well there was two good parts: I’m teaching myself (with some skillshare and Google) time lapse photography for a work project. The second was hanging out with him, he always makes my day better.
Suddenly I’m all vulnerable and honest here. Not hiding behind photos. It feels nice so far but a little scary too.
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Things I plan to work on in the next week:
Getting more protein in my diet and planning enough solid meals for myself. The last two days I’ve been starving by the end of the day. Gotta sort out a better way.
i was diagnosed with depression in march. it came as a shock, even though i had been joking about being depressed for years. years.
you see, whenever i didn’t have plans or a job to go to, i would just stay in bed or lay around and feel sad (this happened at least monthly, sometimes more ). and then i would feel like i was wasting my life by not using those moments productively or adventurously. when i was a kid, i slept in a lot and my parents always told me i was wasting that time… you should get up early to seize the day. but getting up early was never my thing, i couldn’t do it. so i beat myself up over it for years. years. like thinking what is wrong with me?why does everybody else have this figured out? (i know that’s not true but brains like to get dramatic, don’t they?)
I tried to do nablopomo last year and I only made it half way through.
I am not a daily anything person, no matter how much I want to be… no matter how much I love the idea of it. At some point, I forget or just get to the end of the day and I just can’t. Some projects are as short as 7 days and I will do the work (as in take the photos) but when it comes to posting… I just don’t/can’t/won’t.
Here it is Nov. 3 and I forgot it was even nablopomo until I visited my talented friend Andrea’s blog and saw her posting again. (She’s amazing, seriously… click that link.)