Another week has passed again and not much has changed around here. The cat is still trying to convince Daphnie that she is, indeed, lovable. But, Daphnie will have none of it. She finds Sabina annoying and somewhat amusing. And me? I'm still a dog person, but do feel a cat lady vibe creep over me every time I take photos of the little feline. Whether Daphnie or I want to admit it or not, she is sweetly addictive. Happy Sunday folks!
I wasn't so sure of Boxer Dawg upon first meeting him. (And yes, that is his name and that is the appropriate spelling.) It was apparent that either him or at least one of the other dogs my neighbor had fostered over the years had completely taken over the kitchen, tearing up the linoleum, scratching the cabinets, and forcing the owner to build a huge boarded doorway into the rest of the house to keep Boxer out. My arm suffered a bloody gash both of the first times I saw him, making it very clear that he was stronger than me. He was found over a year ago, young and untrained. His tongue is big enough to clean your entire face in one fell swoop if you let him and he could jump a tall wooden fence if there was reason to be on the other side. Ladies and Gentleman, this is no Daphnie.
I got better acquainted with him this week though while dog sitting, and my mind was put to ease as I realized he may be strong, and wild, but has the biggest heart. (He definitely stole a piece of mine.) And just like all of us he just wants a lot of love. I guess I really am as much of a sucker for dogs as I always thought. I mean, look at that face!
It occurred to me recently that it's been nearly a year and a half since I started 'Everyday Sunday.' And although I think it's fairly self explanatory I realized that in a year and a half I have accumulated a handful or two of new followers (hi!) that may not know what it is, how it got started, or more importantly why I do it. And then it occurred to me that maybe even I needed to re evaluate why I do it, because sometimes we all start something and down the line lose sight of it's roots.
In a nutshell I needed a project. I needed an assignment and something that forced me to not only pick up my camera, but a place to share my images of daily life. The small vignettes of every day life are what I love and live for, and often what get overlooked by some. And unintentionally it also created an outlet for my readers and clients to get to know me better. The pictures aren't staged (I try to keep it real around here) and in recent months have began to include images created with my iphone. And why Sunday? Sunday might just be my favorite day of the week. It's lazy and cozy. It's the day you're supposed to sleep in and indulge in your guilty pleasures. A couple chapters in a book, the newspaper, a few cups of coffee with heavily-syruped pancakes, slow walks with your dog, grocery shopping, catching up on your favorite blogs, red wine on your back porch, going for a hike, cuddling, you know... Sunday stuff.
Since the series began I have grown to appreciate all of the unexpected ways it has effected others, and even myself. I pay even more attention to the beauty in life. And at the end of a terrible week I at least have a memory card with a few images on it of the quiet, tender moments that made the week worth while. It's also unintentionally become a [picture] journal of sorts. Every once and a while I spend a good hour looking back at the photos, like flipping through pages of an old journal, and can recall how a specific week felt. The 'Everyday Sunday' pictures make me remember how delicious my life was, when at the time it didn't feel that way. It's forced me to carry my camera at times I know I would have otherwise left it at home. It's given me a disciplined regimen to follow. It's a promise I make to myself. And sometimes I want to add a disclaimer to the images when I know photographically they aren't mind-blowing or technically correct, but then I remember that every day life isn't always mind-blowing or technically correct. It's far from perfect. But I guess it's the imperfections and small moments that make it all so interesting.
I find myself at a tug of war with time lately. And with this comes a huge unsureness of how to feel. I'm holding onto summer with an obligatory softness because I know it will slip through my fingers no matter what. But at the same time I find myself looking forward to marking each day off of my calender as it passes by. But for what? As the locust buzz loudly every day in the trees I'm reminded that summer is still among me. But, come Monday as the children walk by my house wearing their backpacks and the street fills with cars as parents drop their kids of at school, I am filled with the anxiousness of change. The kind of change that only Fall can bring. The kind of change that makes me feel uneasy and at the same time, peak over the edge with an eager readiness for what's next.
I'm not vain. Not at all actually. So when I say what I'm about to say, don't take it the wrong way. Hear me out. I'll get to my point eventually I promise!
I look at a lot of blogs and websites on a daily basis. Food blogs, wedding photographers, lifestyle blogs, and crafters of all kinds. Sometimes they inspire me. Sometimes they make me feel like crap and like I could be doing more. Being more. I've tried to find a healthy balance between looking to others for inspiration and also just focusing on what I'm doing. It's more difficult than it sounds though. But, still, I try.
Anyway, I spent the last two days working on updating my own website by adding a few new pictures and tweaking here and there where needed. When you're a photographer you see your own images so much that you grow tired of them and take them for granted. You are also very critical of yourself. So I'm not sure what came over me when I decided to look through my website's "art" gallery as an outsider, but I did. And little to my surprise I was inspired. By. Me. By...myself. And not in an "Oh wow, I'm a good photographer" kind of way, but rather a way that reminded me that my favorite images were captured at times when I fully let go.
They are the pictures that were a mistake. Pictures that were taken literally my first week of photography school, before I even knew how to use my camera manually (aka no control.) Pictures where I decided on a whim to photograph a glass bottle in my kitchen window and let myself get lost in it for an hour. They are the pictures I got while on a spontaneous outing with Chad when we used to say, "hey lets go out shooting." We never left the house with a plan, but just going was enough to fuel something healthy inside of us. They are the pictures I took when I wasn't in my head. They are the pictures that I took because I decided to bring my camera. (Brilliant, I know.) They are the pictures I got in the freezing snow or when I'd parked on the side of the highway, with cars whizzing by, just to get the shot. They are the pictures that I took because I wasn't afraid. I wasn't embarrassed. I didn't doubt myself. I didn't think about the business or the money, or the practicalities of being a professional photographer. You know, making a living and trying to get people to take you seriously.
So yeah, I inspired myself. I inspired myself to remember that my best work comes when I can be present in the moment and let go. My best work comes from that place inside of me that needs to create without a reason and because it feels right. And so often, I lose sight of that.
I needed to record this for myself, but I hope it comes to you at a time when you too have forgot the truest purest reason for why you create. And helps you to remember.