How We Spend Our Days | 2014 In Review

 

New York Photographer, Syracuse Wedding Photography

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How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives.
― Annie Dillard, The Writing Life

Oh 2014.

I’ve had worse years, for sure. While I wouldn’t rank it in the highlight years of my life thus far, it wasn’t all that bad either. It flew by in the blink of an eye. In fact, I feel like it was just yesterday I was saying good bye to 2013, and now I find myself here yet again. Reflecting and looking forward.

All the art of living lies in a fine mingling of letting go and holding on.
― Henry Ellis

Here’s to letting go of the stresses, the worries, the bad days, the things that torment my peace of mind, and the many different ways I failed.

More so, here’s to keeping the faith, holding on to hope, and the love I was enveloped in by family, friends, strangers, and clients. Here’s to clinging to the ways and days in which I succeeded, where I stood on mountain tops and the edges of the seas, where I stood and witnessed the exchange of love words and forever vows, and where I sat in quiet, restful solitude in my own woods and let my imagination and wonderment run wild.

I hope you will go out and let stories, that is life, happen to you, and that you will work with these stories… water them with your blood and tears and your laughter till they bloom, till you yourself burst into bloom.
― Clarissa Pinkola Estés, Women Who Run With the Wolves: Myths and Stories of the Wild Woman Archetype

In some regards I hate posting things this time of year out of fear of just adding to the noise. It’s intimidating too. Family and friends who have perhaps had a far better, easier (perceived, of course) year than me, photographers who have taken  created far better photographs art than me, people who have done better in business  been busier than me. See what I mean? I am human, I suppose. I have dragons to slay still.

Doing a year in review forces you to see it all in a snapshot though and is an important thing to do. It is an impetus to see the whole picture, the big picture.

And the big picture is:

I had an absolutely beautiful year as a wedding photographer. Gorgeous brides, breath taking venues, and the love. The love I witnessed this year has a permeant place in my heart. Baring witness to people’s love stories, real people – not movies or fictional books – touches you in inexplainable ways and you never forget. At least I haven’t, from the very first wedding I ever photographed to today — I remember their stories.

I met new families. I did more lifestyle sessions than I had in years past and the people who let me into their lives to grab snap shots in time of their family, high school senior portraits, celebrations of new life entering the world — it was incredible, humbling, and refreshing. It was beautiful. I appreciate so much the people who have invited me into their homes, out to their farms, onto their 4-wheelers all in pursuit of capturing them and getting a glimpse into their lives.

I stood on the very tip top of mountain vistas over looking the Sierra Nevadas, stood beneath giant, ancient redwoods that seemed as though they could touch the clouds, on the edge of both the Pacific and Atlantic oceans looking out to expanses that kissed the horizons, and in self-assembled blinds in my own swamp — lost in the wonder of it all. And the photographs I shot, they are near and dear to me. They might not win awards or sell as fine art prints, but they will hang on my walls and take me back to a place and time of fondest memory.

2014 wasn’t bad, it was living. And it was full of stories.

I can’t wait to see what kind of stories I get to tell of 2015.

Happy New Year, friends.

-Kelley

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