My but it's been a long time since I've posted here. I doubt if many folks bother to check this blog anymore but here goes just in case...
There's no way I could catch you up to date with all that's been going on, so I won't even try. I'll just take this moment and share what's going on right now.
Physically I feel great! Still working out twice a week with Matt, my trainer at the gym. It's been over six and a half years now and I know it is making a HUGE difference in my life. I seem to get stronger and stronger. Now, I did have a period of adjustment to what I call my "new body." Last April I dramatically changed my eating habits. Healthy food and less of it. Over the months I've lost between 25-30 lbs., which was over a fifth of my total weight. Now, that was great because I was definitely carrying more weight than I needed, but when you lose such a large percentage of your body weight, you lose muscle as well as fat. It takes your body time to build the muscles again but we're there now. Strong, strong, STRONG! And swimming laps three times a week doesn't hurt. I may be dealing with MS but, dammit, I'm healthier than almost anyone I know. A healthy diet, lots of exercise, no meds, and a positive outlook on life.
Photographically speaking, things are in a very good space. I just learned that a curator for an important exhibit at the Annenberg Space for Photography
in Los Angeles wants to use one of my self portraits in the digital slideshow portion of an upcoming show called Beauty Culture. It opens on May 21 and I plan to attend the opening. Lucky for me, my sister and brother-in-law live in Burbank, just outside of LA, so I can stay with them and we can go together. That will be WAY cool.
I recently discovered another of Detroit's hidden treasures -- the Detroit Civic Youth Ensembles
-- a program that's been going on for 40 years. I saw and photographed their two autumn concerts and am in the process of getting permission to do an ongoing photo project featuring these youngsters --700 of them aged 5 to 18 -- their musician teachers/conductors and college-age mentors. It's looking like I'll have to wait until January but, hopefully, the answer will be yes. I am REALLY excited about this! It incorporates my love of children, music and Detroit. A perfect match!
If you check out my website -- http://www.patricialaydorsey.com
-- you'll find a number of new and reworked photo essays. I've been a busy bee...
But this current "high" hasn't come easily. As with any period of growth, I had to let go of old ways of being, thinking and acting. I mainly needed to cut loose from those I had seen as "authorities" and develop my own sense of myself as a photographer. As helpful as it is to have mentors and community, there comes a time when we must cut the apron strings and forge ahead on our own. That's not to say I don't still have wonderful photographer friends in my life, and it's not to say I'm not grateful for every bit of help I've received along the way; it's just that I'm ready to fly under my own power and no longer have to ride on someone else's wings. This process is not easy. At first it feels like a loss. But there comes the day -- and I'm there now -- when you realize you are your own authority. That's when you know you've found your voice. And that's what it's all about.