No one should be left alone?
I did something a little different to start last week, I went to a nifty little greenhouse/art store/coffee shop to try out my friend Sonia's paint markers on Dollarama canvass. I was telling Sonia that it was like going on vacation after a crazy weekend, because she picked me up and drove me there and back and brought all the stuff we needed. All I had to do was enjoy my relaxation time for nearly three hours. We traded canvasses at one point and both of us now have a piece of art we both worked on, which is pretty cool. I actually gave Paul one of the pieces to put some art in his office, since he doesn't have enough office art yet.
Tuesday last week I went to the dietician and got a massive list of alternatives to deli meat sandwiches. On my next grocery trip I got a few new things to try, but the biggest breakthrough was figuring out that I could make egg salad sandwiches by just slicing up boiled eggs and putting a little lettuce, salt, pepper, mayo and mustard on them. It's so fast and tastes so much like chopped up, proper egg salad - but with less mayo and more time saved! I also realized that a single slice of smoked gouda cheese makes any sandwich so much better, and I should try that more often. I have lots more to try in future, but for now I'm glad to have made one more easy food discovery, since I'm a huge egg salad fan.
My every-other-Tuesday D&D Pirate crew is one of my very favourite things. Like others there, it doesn't even matter how hard or easy life stuff has been the rest of the week, going to play pirate for a few hours is like hitting the reset button on life. I needed a reset, because my busy week continued with a heavy conversation about life at LOVEPIZZA downtown, followed by picking up my long-awaited copy of This Is the Mass from St. Andrew's and praying the rosary there with a friend. The book was a real highlight, because my favourite portrait photographer, Yousef Karsch, collaborated with Fulton Sheen and a talented writer to create a wonderful walk-through of the Latin mass, and I am looking forward to studying my way through it. The photos are incredible, and just make you FEEL the Mass, and that's the level of art I want to aspire to. It was pretty cool learning that Karsch was Catholic, I had known he was religious but for some reason (probably his name and heritage) I thought he was Jewish.
On Thursday I met with a friend from church who I hadn't had the chance to get to know very well before, a lovely woman who, back home in Nigeria, Africa is a doctor, and here is busy with her five wonderful sons while her husband heads back to Africa to get his final ticket as a Doctor himself. It was a joy to get to know her better, and I greatly appreciate her strong faith and pragmatic approach to life and networking. I am looking forward to spending more time with her in future. Thursday was the first day that the apocalyptic smoke starting rolling into Edmonton, and I had to wear a mask to keep the smoke from invading. It felt weird to, but honestly my main takeaway is that I should probably go full gas mask in future if we're going to keep dealing with so much smoke every year. I'm just sad for all the people who need to be evacuated and all the damage the fire is causing to their homes and livelihoods... if all I have to deal with is smoke I'm not dealing with much. I did a quick grad shoot for a lovely young man that evening, indoors, thankfully, and then did not manage even a little bit of focus to get work done, though this week is already better, thank goodness. (I know, I know, I'm typing this out now, but I'm just doing it to space out the editing, not to avoid it.)
Yesterday I shot my final shoot of four days of shooting in a row. Granted, each day was only one shoot and I have had way crazier times as a photographer, but I started that stretch tired, and I'm so grateful to have gotten through it with an amazing set of images and some great shooting memories.
During this crazy week, I shot a boudoir shoot which unfortunately for me is fully private, because I did some of my very, very best work. Maybe she'll let me have just one silhouette!? But I don't want to pressure anyone into giving me their images as much as I do, sometimes. I nearly teared up at the end though, because it was exactly the kind of session I love very much - the kind where I know that the woman is feeling empowered, losing her lifelong sense of body shaming, and finding sides of herself she hasn't explored yet. That's what boudoir is about for me, and I love seeing the success of it.
I also worked with two grade 12 grads and their families, they were both great to work with and I love the photographs we made together. I'm excited to have so many great photos from last week, but I confess that editing everything I have on the docket is a shade daunting.
I envision the third ghost from the Muppet Christmas Carol, in a fogged version of my office, with slanted pen cups and piles of paper:
Me: But I don't have to do ALL this editing right NOW, right? Ghost of Editing Yet To Come: *silently points to my computer*
Me: I will live a virtuous life! Anything but that!!
We cry out
For your love to refine us cry out
For your love to define us cry out
For your mercy to keep us blameless until you return
On Saturday I was having so much fun getting groceries with Paul that I just about forgot I had a concert to go to... and subsequently at the concert, I was so tired at intermission I contemplated just going home to sleep. Teenage Twyla would have been SO horrified. Though, I did stay, and it was worth staying, as some of my very favourite songs were played after the break...
On Sunday I slept in and then spent most of the day binge-watching Brooklyn 99 because the next season came out... and then my last session of the four in a row...
...and here I am on Monday. I'll be on the computer pretty much all week, which is good, because Paul needs the car 3/5 days. I just need to focus enough to get several zillion hours of editing done and earn my keep!