A girl named “Joy”
In April of 2008, during an Earth Day celebration I witnessed this little girl “joyfully” dancing in the street to a quartet playing music. She was so lost in the moment and so caught up in her own happiness I couldn’t help but be drawn in as well. As she danced and frolicked, I lifted my camera and just started to fire off a series of shots. Later while looking back, I envisioned her on the beach, breeze blowing, care free, just gliding in her own glory. So I put her there. When I did this piece, I was learning Corel Painter, so I gave it a painterly effect. At the time, it worked, and I loved it. Tom and I had a retail store in the town, and I placed it in the window hoping that maybe someone who knew the little girl would see it in the window so I could gift them a copy of it. No one came by, so today, the little girl’s identity remains a mystery. I named her “Joy.”
Fast forward eight and a half years to September 2014. It’s the morning of September 18, 2014, the fifth day of an intensive photography conference where models were provided and we were on our own to shoot them on the beach. Erin (a model we met two years ago in St. Louis, MO at “After Dark”) arrived, and as the sun started to come up, she started to dance. Dance on the beach. Dance in the water. Kicking the water up in pure glee. Bending. Twisting. Turning. Laughing. She was lost in the moment, caught up in happiness – and once again… I was drawn in as well. As she danced and frolicked, I lifted my camera and just started firing off shots, again. She was “Joyous” … “Joy” had grown up. And this time, it was before my very eyes… no cutting her out of the photos in a street environment. No painting was necessary. Aside from the obvious compositing that you see here, what was envisioned in my mind over eight and a half years ago was right here. Right here on a warm autumn day in September in Hilton Head, SC as the sun rose to an impressive 83 degrees. This woman in a pink dress dancing in the waves.
Who says we can’t write our own destiny? Who says we can’t hold our future in our hands and go where we want, and be who we want to be?
Ralph Marston (author of The Daily Motivator) stated
“Your destiny is to fulfill those things upon which you focus most intently. So choose to keep your focus on that which is truly magnificent, beautiful, uplifting and joyful. Your life is always moving toward something.”
This statement couldn’t come at a more perfect time in my life both personally and professionally. In retrospect, I feel eight years ago the seed of creativity of that little girl danced through my life as a vision that literally came to life in front of me last week. All grown up. After the past eight years,… I feel grown up. As though I have come of age. So much has happened. So much has changed. Even at the age of 48, nearing 49… there is a difference, a difference in Me.
As I come to the close of my 48th year here, I better appreciate moments. I appreciate friendships and relationships. I appreciate ice cream and puppy breath. I appreciate the feeling of sand being pulled from beneath my feet as the surf pulls back out to sea. My yoga teacher once said, “If we don’t loose our balance, we won’t know how to regain it.”
Working on my balance,