The Creative

I listened to the last peep show zoom call this morning with Bec Griffiths and Yan Palmer.  I learnt so much over the last 6 weeks. Here’s a few things that stuck in my heart and have been tormenting my brain to write them out of my head.

There were hundreds of conversations, questions during the zoom calls. I can sum them up in a few words’ creatives are brave, they are thoughtful, kind, generous, and also willing to be the hard qualities as well, vulnerable and awkward. Yes, it looks as though the creative person just posts photos on Instagram or hits send on a client gallery, collects the money(sometimes) and the work is done. Hahahah. No. Deep in my bones and each and every creative that I listened to invests a little piece of their heart in every art work. The thoughts, time, energy, and emotion to get to that finished work is immense. Firstly, the photographer or creative who offers their service in a business has sat down and specifically targeted you. Sounds creepy hey! It’s not. It is thoughtful.

The creative person wants to serve you and serve their creativity. There is a digging up of the creative’s own fears, own limiting beliefs, they invest in looking into their own heart with empathy, there is vulnerability in sharing themselves. The creative is constantly doing their own internal work so they can work with clarity, knowledge and imagination to best serve their art and client.  The creative thinks and feels into who their ideal client is, they base their business around creating a business and offerings of their art that their ideal client will fall in love with.  Fall in love with because, there is a piece of heart and soul in each piece, there is a deep and potent energy that is infused in the art and you the client connects with that.  Because when the creative is producing this work and wants to grow and expand and create with more and more people, there level of enthusiasm and energy is high and at times is hard to remember that not everyone is on the same page, not every person wants to create or explore boundaries and there is immense amount of work in building trust with clients. When you just want to say for fuck sake, I am a nice person, I take awesome photos, you are looking at my social media or website for a reason, we will have a great time, just book in with me.

There is a deep level of vulnerability, of feeling awkward, of stretching boundaries and being willing to be laughed at or feel stupid. Because for a creative person the art needs to be made. The deep calling to release it into the world then makes space for more art to flow through.

Each time a creative has to market themselves to sell themselves, launch a new piece of art or a project, promote a new offering, the practice of this is so exciting and so terrifying. Each time you do this, again it is your heart and vision being put on display.  When you hit post or send or exhibit the work in person there are feelings of joy and anticipation, pleasure and pride at your own work. Also, terror. But knowing that, to that end point, that finished piece it is from your heart, it is the creation that you are most at peace with, the art that you feel like you can let go of. It is an overwhelming feeling going down the street being celebrated on an extravagant float everyone calling your name in celebration then looking down and you are completely naked. However, these intense feelings are the driver, the stretcher of boundaries, the creator of new art work.

It is a life of forever exploring, refining, being transparent, building relationships, being imperfect, forever being curious and knowing your value. And even if your art work doesn’t attract the accolades or dollars that you hoped, you just create more, you dig deeper into you and your heart and you create what needs to be released into the world through your heart and vision.

Day 8

Welcome.

Less than glamorous feature photo today. One busy lady. Crazy day today, I am working this afternoon and had kids and husband to sort, house work to do and groceries to get done, 3 blog posts to write, and the third day of my Womankind nature challenge to complete.

So grateful Mum is having my two boys for me, so don’t need to worry about them after school, I know they are in good hands for the night.

I published my next #mesistertribe interview today on photographer Marina Meier. Again that evil bitch insecurity is sitting on my shoulder and same as when I posted about my Mum, I am questioning the whole post.

I was going through the post and thinking about the interview/chat I had with my creative, photographer friend Marina and the morning coffee meeting we shared. The creative energy, ideas and excitement flowed beautifully around the table where we sat. I had messaged Marina about a project I wanted to start, this was after she posted on Instagram an image of me and the words “Your story makes you special”. This was the sign I had been asking for, to let me know that my thought to interview women and nurture them into sharing a story with me was a good idea. I was enlightening her on how I love stories, that the way we were laughing, chatting, connecting, sharing ideas and encouraging each other fills my cup. And how I want other women to share with me, and like a domino effect other women then feel inspired, motivated, connected. As a photographer of women’s boudoir, Marina has the same aim.   Marina has amazing passion and a gift for capturing moments with a camera that can change how women view their bodies.

A volunteer project with Karuna hospice that Marina is working on, was a subject of our conversation as well and lead to the memories of her Grandmother. There was so many topics that I could have connected with and shared from our coffee morning, but the story of her Grandmother moved me the most. Marina’s whole demeanour changed when recalling her Grandmother.

End of day 8.

Well not really the end seen at it is 11.49am.

Carpooling with husband to work

He cooked me dinner to take to work with me.

 

Marina Meier

Lounging in the sun at a coffee shop enjoying a heavenly caramel latte, with my photographer friend Marina and her pot of tea. We were discussing her love of photography, the sentimental importance of photographs, and the memories they can induce. Marina reminisced about her grandmother when speaking about photos that are most valuable to her.

“I look at the photos that I have of her, I remember the times that I spent with her”.

“The best gifts I received as a child were from my Grandmother, birthday gifts, Christmas gifts, she would find beautiful presents, sometime months in advance and buy them for me and put them away.  I remember as a little girl – I don’t know how hold, but small enough that, one time I saw package/ box on top of the cupboard and dragged a chair over, stood on tip toes and peaked in the box at a lovely new dress.”

“I spent most summer holidays with her; I loved spending my time with her. We didn’t have a car so was difficult to get to her home, but my father passed her village on his way to work and would drop me off on the way and pick me up after work, or leave me for the weekend or a fortnight. Her kindness, her cooking and her hands are clearest in my mind.  She had rough hands, scratchy hands from working and cooking. I would pull up a little stool and sit between her legs pull up my top and she would run rough, scratchy hands over my little back.”

Marina stops and laughs and scratches her back “my back is itchy know as I tell you this”.

“We moved house at one point, I didn’t see her for a while until she moved 500 metres down the road from us with my uncle.  I spent time with her every day.  I am the oldest grandchild so got to spend a lot of time with her.”

“Once we moved from Kazakhstan to Germany, I only saw her twice in 9 years.  I knew she was sick, but didn’t think that she would pass. We didn’t talk on the phone much, but I always knew how she was doing from my Mum, who spoke to my aunt.  I was in Australia when she passed. I found out a week after she was gone.  My poor Mum couldn’t cope, and my dad was looking after my Mum. I think they were stressed and that is why it took a week.”

 

photographer-marina-nan1  phtographer-marina-nan2

Pretty Knickers and preparation

2016-02-10 13.28.53

 

 

After the initial pounding of my heart and hysterical laughter, at me being chosen for the boudoir model shoot, my emotions swung from:

Excitement about, wearing pretty knickers, getting hair and makeup done and feel all girly.  To freaking the hell out that I have answered an ad on Instagram. I am meeting a stranger in a hotel room in the middle of Brisbane, and what if it is some dodgy set up.

 

I started with a bit of research:

What is the definition of Boudoir:

“Boudoir” is a French word meaning a lady’s private dressing room or bedroom. In photography, boudoir refers to a style in which women pose for photographs partially clothed or in lingerie.

Boudoir photography

An intimate photo of a man or women, suggestively covered but not fully nude, meant to tease the senses.

 

Well I know the literal meaning, so what about examples.

I made a rookie mistake, and went on Instagram and searched # tags for boudoir and boudoir photography. Of course all the women looked like Victoria secret models (I shut down that search quickly).

Pouring a generous glass of wine I settled in to do some online shopping for lingerie.   What an eye opening and kinda creepy shopping experience. It is completely different buying lingerie when you know you are going to be photographed.  I mean have you ever really taken any notice of how small knickers are? I hadn’t until I knew that someone with a camera, that I had never meet was going to take pictures of all that skin. After looking at far too many women in almost nothing. I purchased what was described as a “lace bikini” and a pair of black lace knickers. Let me tell you, the online seller needs to work on their descriptions. Thank fully I did not spend a fortune and the shipping was free. Because the “lace bikini” that I thought I would be comfortable in, because I wear bikini’s to the beach. Turned out to be a barely there lace G-string (the string at the back is the equivalent to tooth floss) and the bikini top has slits from top to bottom so your nipples are on full display. Now the black lace knickers have gorgeous black lace at the front, again tooth floss at the back and the real kicker is they are crotch less – yes CROTCH LESS, not even sure how you design or make a crotch less G-string. These are now shoved in the back of my knickers draw, not much to them so they aren’t taking up room. (These were NOT worn at the shoot).

I am a sucker for pretty lacy confections with bows, and flowers, and ribbon. I have tiny boobs, so bras for me are like decoration, no support really needed. I had planned to go lingerie shopping on my own, especially after my hilariously disastrous online shopping experience. Of course on the day that I decided to equip my kids with back to school items for 2016, Target would happen to have a sale on the exact attire I was looking for. My poor darlings waited patiently on a chair outside the waiting rooms while I tried lace, ribbons, and bows on.

After my successful shopping, I spoke to Marina on the phone. Her gorgeous German accent, her open, calming, friendly, and professional manner all made me feel at ease. We chatted about why I was chosen – (my email connected with her, she was looking for someone that had not done this before and was looking for a new experience). She was put off by the women that assumed that they would be chosen because they had boudoir experience. We spoke about why I wanted to do this – I explained to her that it had never even crossed my mind to seek out this type of experience. That for a busy mumma it seemed like a luxury.  My main point though was that being constantly surround by active, sporty, boys, it would be indulgent and luxurious to have an afternoon where I am the main focus, being spoiled with hair and make-up and wearing pretty lacy things.

The prep for this mostly naked nerve wracking experience was:

Not only did I buy a new wardrobe, I miraculously scored an appointment with my hairdresser, and practised yoga twice a day for the 2 weeks leading up to the shoot.

I was also trying to follow Marina’s instructions:

Plenty of water (more coffee than water)

Lots of sleep (This was the week that I worked the most that I have in months, kids were going back to school, not much sleep)

No tanning (After spending 16 days in Byron Bay, I had a killer tan)

Pamper yourself – go and get a manicure/pedicure.  (Work and kids back to school – no relaxing mani/pedi. I slapped on two coats of nude nail polish after shaving armpits to ankles, the morning of the shoot.)