Dance Without the Devil on your Back

I shot this image two weeks ago and finished editing the night before my birthday last week. It is a very simple image but holds a lot of meaning for me. Letting go and living freely from all ones demons has been something I thought a lot in the past months and I have actively worked towards that freedom. The night before my personal new year started I made the decision that it's time to shake things of and "dance freely". I wanted to remember this feeling with this image and published it that night.

Fallen - including a video!

I finished my second image of this year yesterday morning! I had great fun shooting it and putting it together. I won't give my personal thoughts about this one, I'd rather leave it up to you to see perhaps a meaning or a philosophy in this image ;)

Additionally, I recorded the editing process and it turned out to be such a long video. That meant that I somehow had to cut an almost 2 1/2 hour video (and I didn't even record everything!) down to under 4 was a process! I had to leave out or shorten many steps that went into "Fallen". I mean....who wants to watch me edit for such a long time! Hahahaha... I hope you still enjoy this slightly abridged version!

.....and here is the image:

Space - a few thoughts on my first image of 2016!

Here it is - my first image of the new year! The story behind it is a very simple one, at least in my mind. Firstly, I simply wanted to have an "upside-down" indoors image. There. Done.

Secondly and maybe a bit more complex, is the emotional story behind it. To me the image is somewhat of a summary of the last year. Looking back, I feel like I spent a lot of time in 2015 "hiding". Hiding as in needing time for myself, time to think, time to re-group. But I feel like I was also hiding a bit from opportunities, from taking action in many ways. Creating and withdrawing to my own "space" helped me a lot. Hiding is nothing bad or unhealthy as long as you come out eventually with a fresh mind and clear thoughts. That's what happened to me and I'm grateful for it.

I chose to blindfold myself for the image. I do like to keep my images more anonymous. In this specific one, however, I also used the blindfold as a key element of what I wanted to depict. When life gets very turbulent and you do retreat and find yourself in the middle of many small storms, you ARE blindfolded in a way. You DON'T know what's coming next. You need time and space and it doesn't matter at that moment that you ARE a bit blindfolded. Eventually, you will come out of your hiding spot, you will have learned, you will have new plans, and be able to see clearly again. I also got to incorporate being upside down for the same reasons. In this little hideout, you find yourself upside down more often than not. It's part of it and, in the end, helps you to regain your strength and your balance.

I went into shooting this without a clear concept (as so often the case with me), just a vague idea and a gut feeling. The concept, the idea or thought, the image represents comes as I shoot. I had a lot of fun doing this, above all because I'm back doing my fine art images.

For the set up I had to clear out our little cupboard, or whatever you want to call it, in our living room. Then I climbed in and out for over an hour, leaving me sore today! It was so worth it....also because this cupboard is sorted out and dusted too ;)

The Quiet State of Longing and how the image came to be

As always, I will let you find your own meaning in this image. But I did want to write a few lines that should give you a glimpse behind the scenes of "The Quiet State of Longing"...

I have shot this a while ago and, after three edits, it was tucked away on my computer for a too long time. Why? Because I was uncertain about it and too insecure to show it. But I have to admit, I still love it and here it is! The little secret behind this image is that it came to life during my VERY FIRST shoot of fine art images. My friend and I met up for our first shoot together and this was almost exactly a year ago. We carried loads and loads of props, dresses, fabrics, and equipment through a forest and ended up by a waterfall, our location for the day. We were both nervous, frightened even, happy, and excited all at the same time. We wanted to create but really had no idea how to begin the process. We jumped right in. I had a little story and general ideas based on the story. This image, however, just "happened". It had nothing to do with the story that we used as a guide. Now I know that sketches, ideas, stories are oftentimes only the scaffolding for the image you are creating. They give you something to hold on to until the real idea emerges.

Well, here is the result ;) It was my friend's first time modelling and my first time creating what I now call my "Dreamworlds". I will never forget this damp, foggy, chilly afternoon by the waterfall because it truly was the beginning of an entirely new type of photography for me.

Do you remember your first fine art shoot with a model or alone? How was that? How did it influence your future work? Feel free to share your story, I would love to hear!

(P.S.: After the shoot when the light was gone, we ended up sitting in the forest a few yards away from the roaring waterfall. At first, we thought it was great, badass and an overall almost spiritual experience. Hahahaha....half an hour later, i called my husband to please pick us up. It had started to rain, we were soaking, dirty, and spooked by forest noises and animals stepping on branches. It was fun though....for about 20 minutes ;) )

Musing about the concept of TIME ;)

Is time a "healer" or is it a burden? Does time work for or against us? Do we "take" time or is time being taken from us? Does it tie us down or can we use it in our favor? Does time fly, is time money, can we "waste" time, is time free or is it priceless?

As you can see I have been thinking a lot about the concept of TIME. I had too because time had almost become an enemy - not ENOUGH time for anything, constant pressure, and 24 hours never seemed enough. It started to seem like I never had time for the important things (or anything). At the same time, I have never been less productive, inspired, or efficient. It became paralyzing and unhealthy. The more paralyzed I was, the more time I "lost". It became a circle.

Until I took a step back and TOOK TIME - for the people I love, for the things I'm passionate about, and for myself. I had to reduce my pace and learn again to take things easier, be more laid back again. For far too long I let TIME dictate everything I'm doing - to a degree where I started to have health issues (nothing major but enough to scare me), couldn't think clearly anymore, was often irrational, made mistakes, and was always as tense as a tightly drawn wire.

Somehow I was smart enough and took it as a warning sign, checked my pace and my rhythm. Of course, this is not a process that is finished in a few days or a week. But I am now in a much, much better place than some TIME ago. I let time work for me, I gave myself time, and will continue to do so. I let go of the "strictness" of time and started to see it as my friend again. And, yeah, I realized I don't have to do anything in record speed or 15 things at the same time. ;) There is time enough for everything and everything will happen in due time.

This image was created weeks ago when I was still in this pretty bad place. This is how I felt back then - tied to a giant clock without any way to escape. Things changed since then but I still wanted to publish this image because it represents a tiny part of my story and a huge learning experience. As you may notice, this image is far from perfect. In fact, I think it is one of my worse ones. Now, I could have gone back into editing and presented you with a more polished, better version. I did not. It is what it is. When I created it I rushed, did not take the time because I thought I didn't have enough. See where this is heading.....? So, here it is with all it's technical imperfections, representing a very important lesson.

I'm sure many of you had similar experiences and probably not only once. Feel free to share your thoughts and stories in the comments!