On Motherhood & Sanity


Sunday, April 21, 2013

Saturday, April 20, 2013

two years on...


But a dream.

We remember you. In the warmth of daffodils and in the depths of Africa’s red earth.


Your work has now gotten up from its lazy slumber, no longer expecting you to drive it, but
willing now to drive itself, to serve its purpose.

The conversation, the one you started, continues.

You are missed, remembered and mourned.

Until the next round my friend

Thursday, April 18, 2013

we did one on fairies, now it's time for the dragons...


Trouble has finally realised what fun drawing can be. While his sister slaved away trying to capture if only a reflection of the magic and shiny glitter that inhabits her mind, he would often bore after a few minutes of trying, and failing, to do the same.

He is a rational being. so small but there it is. His inquisitive mind  wants to understand, while hers wants to create. He needs facts, figures and for everything to be 'correct'. she needs it to be pretty. 

But then magic happened. It blew out of her page when someone accidentally  left the window open, and fairy dust from her bathed him and made him able to see  how this tool can also serve him. He is much more interested in the factual details: number of fingers, location of any marks or indentations, all the facts need to  be included in the drawing for him to be satisfied, while  colour and form take a secondary place, but the magic happens just the same. 

Art  is a wondrous thing  which allows me to see the detail  hidden in their hearts, as if holding a giant microscope which acts as a telescope at the same time, allowing me to see the adventures, hopes and dreams that take place in far away lands, far beyond the cold "I don't know"  that usually comes out of their lips.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

on family, old style photo apps and irreplaceable moments

Engelberg, Switzerland



I love looking at old pictures of my family. It's funny how many apps there are out there today that  try to replicate those imperfections: the matte washed out colours, the high contrast, and don't even get me started about the vignette... The thing is,  once taking a perfectly balanced and focused photograph got easy, the challenge  became  finding more subtle ways to incite emotions.  A little like what happened with painting, at some point replicating the vase was no longer enough, and so all the fads -impressionism, abstract, etc took over.

Focused and balanced is no longer good enough, it's all about using tone, colour and contrast, the more subtle tools to underwrite the message, often taking us back  to the sacred and irreplaceable photos  that used to hang along the stair case or over the chimney.

As much as I love  candid un-posed portraits, I also love posed large-family group  portraits, partly because of the challenge it entails to get a group of people organised and looking decent, partly because,  as  a nomad from  a nomad family, this is a rare event, and - like in the old days- mementos of these reunions are invaluable. They represent what photography once was: a treasure from a moment that may never again be replicated.  

Thursday, April 4, 2013

out of the bath

you know that moment, when you were a kid, and you'd just come out of the bath, so cold your skin would stand on end, and then momma -the maker of all things good- would wrap you up in  warm towel you just never wanted to leave....

....you know

Monday, April 1, 2013

Woodstock, March family self portrait

Woodstock, NY
click to enlarge
we shouldn't have, really, but I just couldn't help myself. I needed nature. I needed the kids to be touching mud and trees as opposed to rubber and cement. and so we did.


***

The family self portrait  project started in January 2011. I take one portrait of the whole family, myself included, once a month.  

I started doing this mainly because I realised that I was never in any of the family photos. It was initially meant to last for the duration of 2011, but we've enjoyed  it so much I decided to carry on. Don't know where it's going or when it will end.

Every family should do this. 

To see previous months click on the links below:


August - waiting for Irene, yeah, the hurricane