Sometimes I get impatient looks. Sometimes I get head-shaking. Sometimes I feel badly for my subjects when I’m taking too long at setting up or taking too many. Sometimes my subjects (my one-year-old love of my life or my twenty-something relatives) rebel. Yes, I’m talking about my incessant picture taking. Not to mention some people think I’m a nut with all my photo book making. (Just call me crazy photo book lady!) I touched upon that issue a bit in my last 365 post. Really, just a bit. Little did I know that my side note would encourage Bethany a Photo Book Girl reader, to respond with one of the most thoughtful and inspiring comments I received since starting this blog about two and a half years ago. It made me tear up a bit (but then again I cried watching Snoopy Come Home and always get misty seeing the family’s reaction after they “move that bus!” so admittedly I am prone to sentiment). But seriously, I was really touched by her words and wanted to share them with you. I didn’t know how many folks would see her comment on an old post and since she said I could share her thoughts (after making them “a little more poetic and descriptive” she says), I honestly could think of no better words than her own – real and unedited.
Thanks for sharing Bethany! You made my day! 🙂
Photo Book Girl
P.S. I’m very lucky to have a very supportive family with regard to my photo book obsession. Sometimes they tease me or make comments, but as a whole they love my photo books!
After you read it, I would love to hear your thoughts. Please comment below!
Hi Photogirl…I read your statement about photobaby and I have two stories with one central theme I’d like to share.
I am a photobook Junkie…I do about 5-10 photo books a year. Yep total junkie. Last year I started to get a lot of crap from people….everyone saying (even the pre teen kids when they heard adults jumped in and it spiraled) I don’t want my picture taken. I blew a nutty and was gonna stop doing photobooks when my mother in law after three years said i need to remove all her pictures from my facebook. there’s 20 hours i’ll never get back…..any how i was ready to be done with photos photo books etc. after all it isn’t easy to make the books, to take the time to take pictures and edit them….and for what i was wondering why bother….and then two things happened shortly after…i like to believe it was God giving me advise…
I work with elderly people part time in their homes. I worked with a woman in her 90’s and we were talking. She had a few shoe boxes of pictures and I of course love photos so we started looking together and talking. Her kids had moved, her husband had died, and she only had two grandchildren that lived far away (life had unfolded around her). Her kids come to visit as often as they can, a son lives locally but is busy with his own life and comes by weekly, she told me that all she had left to remember her life of being a mother that she loved so much was those boxes of pictures….and that when she looked at them she was back there. she wished she had more photos of herself, of her husband but vanity had prevented them both from being photographed to often…….she wished she’d taken more pictures of the daily routines because while trips had been fun and family gatherings great what she missed and remembered where the family dinners, the morning routine for school, the kids playing in the backyard and their nightly board games….things at the time that seemed insignificant but now are priceless….it was inspiring to see someone near the end and realized that all these books i do for my daughter will most likely be what brings me joy and comfort much later in life should i be so lucky to live that long…..
the second thing that happened….in summers i go to my families in nh at a lake. the cousins come and my brother (who is the biggest complainer of all and his preteen kid that i love dearly but can be well preteeny) I brought my collection of books from the past 5 years that had to do with us (my family not the inlaws) we were gonna be seeing great aunts and uncles and long lost cousins so i brought the books to share the years we’d been seperated…..well, those wonderful, bratty, moody preteens saw the bag of books and one rainy afternoon they spent 6 hours lying on grandma and grandpas big bed looking at the books….laughing, sharing stories (the books span 5 years) and remembering. The little kids were like eh…but the big ones 11-13….were so enthralled and so HAPPY…..i went out with my brother that night or a few later and with tears (he’s not an emotional person) he said to please keep doing the books and include his family too…..that in the winter etc. he and the kid will sit and look at the two or three i’ve given of the 30 some odd i’ve made) he said he knew he was the bigest pain in the ass but that he’d try to be better and that truly for his family it was the best gift ever….
the only other thing i’d like to share is this…..i watched a show a long LONG time ago….It was one of those mindless blab shows with folks talking about feelings life etc. there was a group of people like 5 that were adults and i don’t know what the theme of the show was but this one segment is burnt in my soul…..they were talking about their parents and the parents were dead…they were all from different families the six….and these adults who had lost their parents said something along the lines of “I wish I had more pictures of my mom. She was always hiding from the camera because she thought she was fat, not young, her hair not done….she was my mom and to me she was the most beautiful woman ever. Now I can barely remember what she looks like. I have one or two pictures that are from weddings etc. and while they are beautiful they don’t catch the essence of who she was….her laughing, the way she was everyday……so i tell all of your audience to take pictures of yourself because as harshly as you judge yourself today tomorrow you may find this is the time you miss and if you have kids you are to them beautiful and always will be….”
so now even 70pounds heavier then i was when i married, even though i have wrinkles and my hair is a little grayer….every book has at least 5 pictures of me….and my brother said that to me….he said put more in of you all the kids love you and you and mom will be the women my kids love and remember (my sil is not always the best parent….she’s a little rigid and cold—-a sterotypical scientist that’s a little bit too critical hence why she’s an ex)
anyhow i wanted to share these with you…..maybe you can tweek them and make them a little more poetic and descriptive…..but please share the message if you’d like…..i’m lucky to have had these experiences they guide me and help me to make choices….not everyone has had such a life…..
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