Last year, while learning to shoot film, I had an idea I wanted to try to shoot. There was a lot of self doubt along the way questioning why I was even doing this. I wondered if I was wasting my time and who I thought I was branching out and trying something different (hello, I’m an over thinker – the killer of creativity). I pressed on though and along the way, I found out that it’s good to shoot something for no other reason than it being good for me.
I wrapped up this project at the end of 2021 and hesitated to share it publicly, but after more internal debate (hello again, self doubt and overthinking…), I decided to give it its place in the world. There were a lot of different circumstances that lead me to this creation, but for simplicity’s sake, here are three.
Special thanks to my friend, Becca. This whole project was an experiment, but the one thing I was certain about was asking her to model. I knew I wasn’t experienced enough to shoot all self-portraits of everything I wanted to try, so I asked her. She’s embodies qualities that I admire in a woman, mom and friend. When I sent her a message asking her to be a part of something I didn’t even have all the words or ideas to fully explain yet, she graciously agreed. When self doubt crept in, she was encouraging. Plus, she worked hard and dug deep emotionally to bring my vision to life. I’m grateful for what she portrayed and I’ll forever be indebted to her for the amount of times she let me flip her hair every which way without getting annoyed.
During one session, I joked with Becca that this was like senior photos for your thirties. But instead of caps and gowns or your football or cheerleading outfit, it’s a representation of becoming an adult experiencing the love, heartache and exhaustion of raising kids, balancing a career and responsibilities, seeing the world and its future differently, all while trying not to lose yourself along the way. I did my best capture a variety of feelings that I’ve experienced as a woman and especially since becoming a mom: frustration, being torn, drained, lost, lonely, needed by everyone, worried about humanity’s future, yet hopeful, curious, connected, free and striving to be comfortable in your own skin.
I shot these images on a variety of black and white film stocks, due to a lack of pre-planning on my part. I had a couple of rolls of Kodak Tri-X on hand to use, but waited until the day of the shoot to go get more. Unfortunately, my local store was out of this type, so I embraced my mistake and used what they had available. In the end though, I appreciate this inconsistency and realness as a reflection of me.
The portraits of Becca were shot on film with a Canon EOS Rebel GII camera using Kodak Tri-X 400, Ilford HP5 Plus and Bergger Pancro 400 film. The self portraits shot digitally on a Canon EOS R6.
Drained, lost, torn, wavering, lonely, worn down, a shadow of your former self.
Frustrated, enraged, fed up, emotionally exhausted, done.
Resilient, determined, confident, bold, capable, a force.
Complex, curious, empathic, student of life, truth seeker, self aware.
Present, balanced, spiritual, accepting, peaceful, harmonious, hopeful.
Complete, content, desired, satisfied, comfortable in your own skin.
Uninhibited, playful, adventurous, self loving, a light.
Thanks for reading. Interested in seeing more of personal work on film?! Check out my Shot on Film series.