I have always felt awkward photographing myself. The fear that someone would just tear apart the image, judging and analyzing the moment where I had exposed a piece of me; it kept me behind the camera where it was safe and comfortable. This semester I took a class that put a huge focus on conceptual thinking. I had to find that part of myself that fell in love with ideas and the challenge to express them. Our teacher brought to light the importance of being in touch with our identity, and understanding how to express our own unique view on life. Each self portraits becomes another page to our journal. As we grow, change, hit roadblocks, and push forward, the portraits will change. It is important to accept the skin you are in. You don’t have a choice. The more comfortable you become, the better hold you have on who you are and what you think. You need to reconnect with yourself once in a while, and that reassurance for yourself is essential to moving forward with confidence.
I bet you haven’t heard of Hayfork. Its in Northern California, an hour into the mountains from Redding. You drive on this crazy winding, barf inducing road, but other than that the drive was beautiful. There were trees upon trees, and the endless green was a nice change from our Santa Barbara environment. I went with my boyfriend and we stayed at his Grandma’s house, which was a lovely cabin-like place. She must have thought I was crazy, because I had my camera up to my face the whole stay, capturing the random sights around her house. A bathtub in the yard. Come on, why would you not want to shoot that?? So bizarre, so cool. I also have a whole memory card just filled with images of her dogs, Charlie (the small one) and Mable. A few days in the mountains was incredibly refreshing, just adventuring with a camera in hand. No rules and guidelines, only capturing life because I love to.