Disclaimer: I am writing this blog post January of 2017, so while the photos are taken Nov 2014, the words reflect my thoughts on this time now.
I knew I was losing Maine. Geoff was in the middle of job interviews with various colleges. I was still in the denial phase, yet photographing like crazy, knowing the end was coming. I stopped making playdates or seeing friends and spent all my time alone with the children and Geoff. I couldn't stand having to rip away and start over yet again, having just moved here a year prior. When we moved to Maine, I went from an urban Southwestern environment to a rural Northeastern environment. I left networks of work colleagues who'd become friends, customers I looked forward to seeing every few weeks, a high-stakes but energizing sales job I liked, I left our church friends, our neighbors, and my tight little circle of mom friends from the birth center. I left our colorful city full of things to do with kids. In Maine, I had none of that: no job, no church, no neighbors, and no mom group. While I did make a few friends here and there, for the most part, I was alone, all day, every day, with our children and the wilderness of Maine and our small town. The hills and barns became my acquaintances as we drove to the coast or just to nowhere, antiquing and picnicking. I fell in love with the pastoral magic of midcoast Maine, and with the ice-barren beauty of the Kennebec Valley. We explored all the time. A long time ago, I started out shooting landscapes when I was a teenager as a way of finding beauty around me despite the secret abuse I was suffering at the time. Coming here meant going back to that, and into finding beauty in the everyday moments around me as well. Students often ask me where I draw inspiration from and which photographers they should be following, etc. etc. The honest answer is, I don't usually draw inspiration from other people, but from what's around me: landscapes, sullen sunsets and the textures they reveal, and always, always, music. When I picture these places, I can hear Elizabeth Mitchell, The Milk Carton Kids, Renee & Jeremy, The Cave Singers, and Woody Guthrie, and the voices of Cannon & Grace behind me, asking me a million questions I will never know the answers to. But the good news is...THIS SUMMER WE ARE GOING BACK! Not permanently of course, but for the summer! I'm already ready for blueberries.