Beautiful Proof

Then came the age of digital photography. This changed everything. We save, rather than print. We shoot, view and delete. What would my children have? Several thousand shots of the coffee I drank, how the steam rose out of the cup, the perfect slice of sunlight glinting through the steam. Thousands of images of themselves and loved ones. But what of me? That’s when I decided to turn my lens around and find my proof—all of it, the good, the bad and all the in between.

Portraiture, in itself, is a powerful thing. When you shoot a portrait of anyone, you’re capturing them at a moment in time that can never be replicated. There’s a huge vulnerability between shooter and subject. This doesn’t change when you’re both shooter and subject. Turning the camera on oneself, after years of finding comfort behind the camera, can be scary—allowing not only the world to see you, but for you to see you. Once you allow yourself permission to see yourself just as you are, there’s no going back. To me, it has become a form of self-care, a way of seeing myself in my world and of connecting to the greater world beyond the bubble of my own home.

My typical style of photography is all about the color. Vibrant color and the use of natural light is my comfort zone, but in self-portraits, I found myself turning more and more to black-and-white. Stripping away all the happy shiny color, leaving only the simplicity of shadow and light, allowed the emotion of the moment to pierce through. The humanness of the image feels more powerful in the starkness of black-and-white.

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