It’s been a long time since I’ve been on the blog. After the loss of my dad my creativity seemed to evaporate and things that I was once so passionate about suddenly failed to hold my attention. I even stopped taking photos with my phone. Grief is a strange animal, when it arrives at your door it turns your world inside out. Things around you still look exactly the same but you are profoundly changed. I really leaned into my spiritual practice during this time which helped to manage the tidal waves of emotion but they still left me sapped of energy and inspiration. I have always been a dreamer, as a child growing up in a volatile and unpredictable environment my fantastic daydreams were my escape. I’ve wanted to live in London for as long as I can remember. I’ve always credited the obsession with Disney films set here like Peter Pan and Mary Poppins, places where parents are all but invisible and wild, charming children ran free (at least until suppertime).
When we went back to the Timmins, Ontario for my father’s funeral little had changed in 30 years. Before we left we took a family photo in front of a Chinese restaurant called London Cafe which is where my dad would take me for a root beer and onion rings when he was in town. I realised then that this place was probably the nexus of my love affair with London, the faraway place where all of my dreams seemed possible.
September came and with it the glorious mid afternoon golden light, dancing off the leaves on my walks home with the kids after school. A familiar feeling began tugging at the edges of my mind and the studio in our loft began to take shape. I booked in some models and a make-up artist for a test and called in some samples I’ve been meaning to shoot for ages. When the day came I was haunted by insecurity, my grief often manifests as feeling terrible about myself. It took everything I had not to just send everyone home so I could cry under my bedcovers.
When I finally managed to start the edit I was shocked at what I saw. I didn’t hate everything like I expected. In fact something emerged for me, the beginning of a style and point of view all my own.
When people talk about courage you often think of great acts of heroism like saving puppies from a burning building or donating your kidney to save a stranger’s life. Courage however, is not reserved for grand gestures. Courage is practicing something you don’t know how to do. Courage is getting out of bed when you’re sad and scared and you don’t think you can take anymore hurt. Courage is following your dreams, letting your inspirations take root in your mind and telling the voices in your head that tell you “you’re not good enough…” to shut the hell up.
Courage is trying even when you’re worried you can’t. Courage is following your heart, no matter where it takes you. #dontquityourdaydream
Hair and Make-up: @emburr_mua
Emily Darcy Adams for assisting me and taking video.
Rachel Riley for the cardigan and dresses.