Mother's Day is fast approaching and every year I talk about what motherhood means to me, celebrate the mothers I get to meet and do what I can to make women feel appreciated.
Yet every year I feel we're slipping more and more into the background as mums. I know it's not a new phenomenon. I think every woman experiences that moment after their first baby arrives when they realise that they could be naked and reciting Shakespeare on a hilltop and no one would be listening! I have to wonder though, what is this practice of being relegated to the background in favour of our kids and how can we bring the one person that is actually the cornerstone of her family, back into the frame?
I often talk about this to the families I photograph. There is a look in your eyes that you get when you look at one of your children, or when your kids look at you. It's what I've always called the 'lovelight' and it transforms a face into something that takes your breath away. My LoveLight sessions are all about that one look, the giving of it and the reflection of it in your face. I see it in you, the people you love see it, but I find that many times the mum in a family doesn't see it. We have a wall built of self-criticism that prevents us seeing ourselves as the people we love see us. We prefer to see ourselves as we think society does...and that is a waste of our beautiful lives. We are the ones that put ourselves last and dull down our being to let our kids shine, but we count too, don't we?
For the longest time I've wanted to photograph women surrounded by their families in a really warm and meaningful way. You would be the focus of the portrait sitting, instead of the backdrop. You would be shown in your rightful place, as the queen of your domain. The look in your eyes would say it all, the 'lovelight' that you reserve for those you love the most...and your family would be your support act, with those little arms around your neck, a beautiful look between you and your husband or even the dog with his head in your lap! This would be about you, your story and the people you love.
Today this Dove ad has been doing the rounds. I can't get over the timing as I sit and write this, but I had to add it as tears are now streaming down my own face. If I could give the beautiful women I meet one gift it would be this. You truly are more beautiful than you think you are.
This Mother's Day, it would be my honour to photograph you reflected by the love of your family. I want to show you how beautiful you really are to those around you that count the most. I want you to have your very own LoveLight sitting.
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