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Inspiration can be a tricky thing. I view myself as a bit of an artist, both in photography and other pursuits. I've fought against my creativity, thinking (wrongly) that it was too emotional and therefore made me weak. If anything 2020 taught me, it was that I need more of what I was once told was weak.

With photography I often feel like I'm channeling a fairy tale or a love story when I'm shooting and editing a session. The girl who wanted to write romance novels comes through there. My creative sessions are usually full with pensive looks off at the horizon - the images I love most are not where they smile at me, but where they smile at themselves. Where the shoulders and eyes tell me there's a content-ness inside.

When I look back at my childhood for inspiration on what true happiness is, there is a kaleidoscope of moments that sound like a content sigh. Conversations with my mom, exploring and feeling the freedom of adventure investigating the forest outside our campsites, small moments of breathing the air before childhood me ran off to play, moments of wonder at nature - small things that adult me takes for granted.

I realize that the happiness I seek, the moments I seek, and the images I want to create all stem from that moment of pause. That moment of appreciation I never recognized for what it was... it just was. Those moments I so admire in my daughter - when time stops for a spin the flowers, or a sniff of a plant. Or for my son in that split second while his imagination takes root and a whole world spreads before in in the backyard. That split second moment of rapture in a story or seeing a world beyond what they know of me, to who I was before I was mom.

Often when I am shooting, I'll get caught up one of those moments. When the little one is realizing dandelion fluff blows on the wind, or when grandma tells a story from long ago, or she looks at her no-longer-little one remembering her kaleidoscope of moments that somehow compiled to the beautiful, brave soul before her. When mom laughs from spinning and I can see that little girl inside her, giggling at the castles and rainbows in her imagination. When a prompt brings out a laugh that reminds him of that moment, years ago, when his heart tipped towards love.

I could spend a lifetime in those pockets of time when the world is bright and tinted in rose. But since I am of this world, the most I can do is capture those moments to come back to as often as we need.


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