I almost lost my mind this month, but kept my feet moving. I spent a week in bed and then an hour in transit out to Astoria, to wander lost through a carnival under the Robert F. Kennedy bridge. I bought a bag full of dried butterflies, a battery pack for my lights, and a plane ticket to Los Angeles.I feel like I’ve been seeing things in slow motion, unable to guess when the crash will register, always feeling like I’ve forgotten something. I shot/produced 3 shoots in one week and then ran away to Canada to drink wine on a trampoline surrounded by my favorite willow.
This month I spent more time shooting with others than I did alone, something that is strange for me after weeks chalked full of self-portraiture and solitude. Days I wasn’t shooting I had friends come over with bags of clothes and we listened to the same 3 records on repeat while setting up seamless’s and tripping over wires and forgetting where I'd put my camera down. I covered my studio with plastic and spray painted some wayward branches pink and white, initially for photos but they’ve become such a staple of my home decor. I spent an hour and a half on NJ Transit to Little Silver where I got to see the shore, step inside a big pink mansion, and walk around the suburbs at night drinking wine (all of my favorite things). I can’t wait for the rain to end and the sun to come to stay.
I turned 23 this month. I woke up early and took the A train to Rockaway Beach by myself and found a small subdivision of mansions to wander around in. I spent hours stringing up butterflies on fishing wire, and now that I think of it, I spent most of the month scheming to bring some equally magical projects to fruition. I’m teaching myself to stay up late again, living between hours I feel like I haven’t seen since I was 18. I took a lot of photos of myself this month, and spent days re-ordering the conglomerate of art on my walls and then photographing it. I don't remember the in-between moments so much, I was probably wandering.
I don’t remember much of March, I guess it slipped away from me. I woke up, took pictures, and went to bed most days. Perhaps I had a few long nights with friends talking about art and doing shots in all the dives in Bushwick, only to wake up to find strange things missing and hiding in forgotten corners of whatever apartment I visited the night before. I’m dreaming of and plotting my travels for the summer, working diligently towards my goals and along the way meeting some of my favorite people to date. I feel like I am constantly in transit, floating down a river towards some unidentified destination, but every day I am learning to thrive in this current instead of just treading water.
I’m breathing easier this month, since the sun came out. I booked myself solid and shot myself back to sanity (although unfortunately only two of these shoots are currently releasable.)
I don't remember February in terms of anything I did, but in things I created, learned, or just thought about for too long. What will stick in my mind about February is how much I’ve been thinking about this book I've been reading; (The Man Who Mistook His Wife For a Hat) more specifically the chapter "Incontinent Nostalgia" where an elderly woman being treated for Parkinsons and Alezheimers has an unusual reaction to her medication, and experiences extreme “reminiscence", e.g. can’t stop physically hallucinating vivid memories of her childhood that she had until that moment, forgotten. Whenever my mind is wandering it thinks a lot about what these hallucinations might have looked like and it’s spilling over into all aspects of my creative life.
It's also been wandering in and out of the concept of photographic style; what shapes it and influences it. I feel like the reasons I photograph have always remained mostly the same: striving to see things/capture things the way I did as a child. And of course I always meant that philosophically, but this month I also mean physically. The way I would visually perceive things as a child was so different and I can only barely remember it, I don’t think any adult truly does. But the way the colors burned, the way lights flicker with your eyes half open pretending to be asleep. The way the edges vibrated whenever you felt anything intensely, how the blacks were still so black even with the lights on.
I think about how at the perfect angle I could cover my right eye and convince myself the staircase was 5000 steps taller, which I think is why I close my left and try to make it real:
I will not be missing January. This month I found it harder to get out of bed than most months. But I tore my freezing toes out and kept creating and I guess I’m proud of that, even if I spent too many self-indulgent days taking self-portraits in my underwear and forgetting to answer my phone. They’re still digging a foundation in the empty plot across my street, I'm really worried about what they’re going to build and how tall. Ever since they condemned and disassembled the old apartment building that used to sit there we can just barely see the needle of the Empire State from our bedroom window, just past the big yellow church on Central. It’s nice to have something bright to focus my eyes on when I’m making my way back to bed at 3am after getting a glass of water. The heat in our apartment is out of control, we have to sleep with our windows open to even it out. About a week ago I kept waking up in the middle of the night and staring at a large full moon framed perfectly in our window, and became too entranced to fall back asleep and yet still too tired to grab my camera. I feel like I watched the clouds filter past for hours but maybe it was only minutes. This pretty well encompasses my interaction with the world this month; from a far, with great intrigue. Here are some fragments of my January: