This Summer required extra Weekend Therapy to unpack everything we went through the last two years. When it started, I was still feeling floored that we had shut down the year prior, let alone the ups and downs of the most recent school year.
So I took pictures, traveled a bit, walked around aimlessly, rode my bike, binged TV, obsessed over listened to true crime podcasts, hung out with the kids, talked to my counselor, and watercolored. I think it accomplished the goal of coming to terms with all of the transitions, and I felt ready to finally start to hope and plan for the year ahead…however unpredictable it might prove to be.
My own counselor is helping me realize that we often think of self-care like we can put rest in some reserve for later when our lives explode again. But alas, it’s not so easy! Self- care is an ongoing process, and in the down-time of summer I’m learning to use my energy to process the past, and develop sustainable self-care habits for the busy future.
Anywho, at the end of the day (or summer) I have a cautiously optimistic readiness for the school year and a big ol’ pile of photographic and art prints! I went the summer taking pictures of my watercolors and then gifting them to people who will find them meaningful. And after ordering some magical giclee prints, I’ve decided to motivate my self- care practice by starting to sell them!
More to come on this if I can ever for the life of me figure out the interwebs, but if the site looks a little different it will be a sign I’ve figured it out!
Five purchases later I have two 35mm Minoltas that actually work and I am OBSESSED! Despite weighing 10,000 lbs, I yanked those suckers all over the place with me this summer and I can’t be more happy with how my pictures are starting to turn out!
It take a second to develop (I don’t have a local lab so I’ve been using darkroom.com), but there is something really lovely to learn in taking pictures with a 35mm camera. You’re in this cool spot, with a cool shot, and looking through that viewfinder knowing that your picture may or may not turn out with these old broads. What does that mean? You are so much more involved in the picture because you also have to be present to remember the moment since there’s a good chance you might not get it back! Bless, you can take the hobby our of the, er, the counselor out of the–whatever, you know what I’m trying to say!
With practice, I can also tell that I’m improving on reading the exposure and aperture and focusing and whatnot. But guess what? No need for pressure because you have about three weeks to develop and check in on your progress. You either have to go with it or put the camera down.
This Summer was such a needed rest. I tried to really be conscious about allowing myself to process the crazy year behind and the uncertain school year ahead. The cameras were a perfect way to check my efforts and force me to slow down.