“Do you know," Peter asked, "why swallows build in the eaves of houses? It is to listen to the stories.” ~ J.M. Barrie, Peter Pan


Anatomy of a photo shoot/Anatomy of my life

See these bare feet propped against that old blue/green chair? This is where I am right now, relaxing into who I am. It is the last shot of a photo shoot yesterday morning - the morning sun has settled into its late summer position, moving around in the sky to throw shadows of a plant onto my bedroom floor, always a subject for picture-taking, but this year I wanted to be in it.

I began casually, just a toe barely touching the shadow, much as I do in my real life, always a bit shy about things at first, cautious, not really fearful, but not really trusting either. What seems like a big step to me always proving to be just a baby step. But a step nonetheless, my toe just barely there - one toe in the water as they say. Not quite courageous enough to just jump on in. Thinking way too much.

But that thinking pushed me a bit further in, the shadows of the leaves covering my feet, me a part of the picture. I liked it, I really did, I still do, but this photo shoot continued to mimic my life, maybe this isn't right, I told myself, maybe I need not my feet but something else instead. Aha! Exactly like real life. So I backed out of the picture, removed myself, totally hiding away. Thinking.

I kept firing away, looking elsewhere, never at me, bringing in this antique child's chair, looking away, distracting myself, ignoring what I really want, look, I tell myself, isn't this wonderful? And yes it is, or yes, it may be, and I am out of the picture, where I momentarily wanted to be, but then I remembered hey, what I am doing? Wasn't this supposed to be about me? So much like real life, where I find myself looking in from outside, wondering how I got there, knowing I have only myself to blame. So.

Okay. I'll let myself back in. Just like real life. A baby step again, but working with what I brung to the dance. Toes just into the picture, but there, closing in on the feeling I wanted. I just kept firing away, moving the chair, moving around the chair, getting closer. Just like real life.

And then one whole foot in. How brave of me! :) Truly I wasn't thinking any of this, but later as I looked at the images on my computer, and the progression of the images, I saw my life's modus operandi played out before my eyes. Yes. So brave, that one foot totally in, she says sarcastically. I didn't like it, it felt wrong, but I was almost there, quite in love with that leaf pattern on that one lonely foot.

And then, finally, the obvious. Standing in the chair, the shadows laying like henna patterns on my feet, getting terrific photos, moving, adjusting, done. Or so I thought. Even though I seemed to be through, I fired off another shot or two. Totally relaxed. And that is the first image up there at the top of this page. That is where I have learned to stand. On my own two feet. Relaxing into the idea that I am enough just as I am. I am just fine.

and getting better all the time


  1. I am very much like that, too. Hesitant, shy, thinking way, way too much about everything. Constantly having to remind myself that I am doing something worthwhile, my life is beautiful even in its trials and its smallness. Sometimes, it's very hard to make myself believe that. So thank you for sharing this. The photos are lovely, the leaf shadows are lovely, your feet are lovely, and yes, you are lovely too. Just as you are.

  2. i love this post, because I can totally relate. and the photos of course... this last photo is perfect.
    i'm so far behind on my reading. your blog is one i want to catch up on because there is always such substance here. thanks for that.

  3. I really love the perspective of what you had to say here and how the observation came to be.
    But, you know me...TOTALLY distracted by those lovely shadows!

  4. ooh great post, really enjoyed this

    goodness well done on the painting the fridge (and thinking of me haha), you know I have been thinking the very same, but painting mine charcoal, how bizarre!

  5. I love that you've learned to stand on your own two feet. I'm trying so hard to get there. I did sign up for the Unravelling course yesterday.


  6. If it counts, my opinion is that even if we're not physically in our pictures, we're there anyway. . . what we shoot, the intention, the perspective.

  7. Oh my...this just got me:

    "On my own two feet. Relaxing into the idea that I am enough just as I am. I am just fine. and getting better all the time."

    That is so beautiful! I am going to say this to myself a few times...it's a really great and powerful affirmation!

  8. I want to drink these photo's the light is so positively gorgeous:)

  9. henna covered feet..how wonderful they are :) anatomy of a photoshoot/life. what a brilliant post!


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