sometimes you don’t see things right away. sometimes it takes upheaval, change, filtering, reorganizing or even simply a fresh vantage point before some things start to appear and take shape.
recently I’ve been working on updating my portfolios which I have been putting off for far too long (years.) the few times this past year I actually visited my main website/portfolios, I quickly left reminding myself that updating them was to be a priority. but, you know how the story goes, you get busy…and then the mere thought of trying to narrow images down ~ overwhelming.
one day i just sat down and began. I started out, naturally, with categories. as I concentrate on children’s portraiture, (editorial and real life) my categories are simple. as I began going through sessions selecting images, I realized that I wanted to keep some of the images intact with their stories because they were shot as stories and that’s how i saw them. so I created a category of stories, which I quite like. I also noticed I had two very strong categories outside of that. one was laughter and one was harder to describe. I noticed that I had quite a few images, many of my favorites, that had nothing to do with smiles or laughter but were full of another emotion harder to categorize. not sadness or unhappiness, just a melancholy of sorts, a stretch, a posture. maybe a glimpse or hint of something deeper, or maybe just observation ~ observing me and what i am doing, trying to figure that whole thing out. after all, children don’t really understand that their parents have hired someone to come in and photograph them. not really. i noticed that in almost every session I had captured images in this category. i was drawn to them. I understand that we want to think of childhood as nothing short of smiles and being carefree, and i realize that these may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but these kinds of images pull me in, make me stay with the image a bit longer and look a little deeper. they remind me of the depth our children are capable of having even at such young ages. they are real, raw, honest moments that they’ve let show and I happened to capture. sometimes…it’s not about the smiles. sometimes it’s much deeper than that.