I am writing this on a slow Saturday afternoon. In front of me is a bowl of bright red strawberries, our living room is filled with the floral scent of peonies and through the windows I can see the green oasis that is our garden. As I consider my surroundings, I am reminded just how long this post is overdue. Filled with dark tones, comfort food and snow, the photographs seem almost of a different time. But the experience ... that's still very much one of the present.
It's been two whole months since I attended Carey Nershi and Eva Kosmas Flores's First We Eat workshop in Barton, Vermont. It was the dead of winter, snowstorm Stella had just covered multiple states in a blanket of snow, and the workshop location was smack down in the middle of nowhere. Icy and still on the outside; warm and inviting on the inside ... it was the perfect hideaway. Charming, too, although it wasn't charm that made this such a distinctly beautiful experience. It was connection, and inspiration, and, strangely, doubt.
I went to Vermont with the intention of learning more about styling and photography and with the hope of having endlessly inspiring conversations with a new group of people. I also went with the notion that I'd be pulled far out of my comfort zone, yet that, as a result, I'd come back with a new sense of accomplishment about my work. And all of those things happened. Only, I wasn't prepared for the way in which that would shake me.
Being surrounded by so many passionate people, acquiring so many new insights and exploring so many different places and flavors and styles, ... it triggered a myriad of things inside of me, that I'm still trying to make sense of to this day. It opened up new paths, I think. Showed me that I could style and photograph in different tones and styles than I was used to, encouraged me to act on the things that I'd previously just mused about, and convinced me that I want to do more, photography-wise, than food alone. In some ways, it feels like I have gained a wealth of clarity; yet in others, I am horribly confused. Because that's the thing: that weekend in Vermont not only left me with a range of new possibilities, it also, inevitably, left me with the responsibility of having to choose. Of forging a new path. One that will be splendid, I'm sure, but that'll take a little bit of figuring out first.