July & August: The Month in Photography

So, it’s been a rough few weeks, not gonna lie. I think I haven’t gotten a good night of sleep in… actually, I can’t even remember, which is not a good thing. However, I have been drawing a lot, and spending a ridiculous amount of time playing ukulele when I am not absolutely vibrating with anxiety.

But yeah. It’s been a rough few weeks, and I’m just having trouble accessing the photography part of my brain right now, because most of the time I’m just absolutely frozen with panic, and jugging a hundred different things.

I hope I’ll make another entry in this post soon.

It’s been a rough couple of… I’m not even sure. When you’re in a rough patch, isn’t it weird how time seems to smudge and blend into mush? I just feel like I’m barely struggling along right now; like I have feign interest in much of anything other than hanging out with my friends, and watching TV, and drawing–any chance I get to just not be in my head. I’ve just barely been keeping on top of things, and honestly, I’ve been neglecting this blog a lot of late.

In my head I was picturing this summer being a lot much more fun. But surprise, guess what, you can still be depressed, even when it’s sunny out! (In a quiet, grating way that just stretches on and on and on, wearing you down until the littlest things set you off.)

Normally I try to end these on a high note–but I don’t know. Sometimes, situations just really suck, and that’s where I’m at right now.

About this photo, though: I went to this sunny field where all the grass was perfectly dried up and golden, and took a ton of shots with the wind blowing the grass, to make a double exposure where you can really see the movement in the shot–and I’m actually really proud of how this turned out.

So, time has definitely flown–I’m actually writing this in August, almost September–but I actually kind of like writing these posts from a slightly removed perspective. (This is why you’ll notice there are no dates this time around; let’s say it’s artistic.)

I went on a trip to the park, and did some reading the afternoon I took this photo. I’ve been reading a lot this summer, and trying to get better at note-taking. I always used to hate nonfiction, but now I’ve been reading a lot more of it. Maybe I’m just getting older.

I can feel the summer starting to fade. It feels like it’s barely been a month, and not even that. It’s crazy, how fast time is passing. I wanted this photo to feel kind of whimsical, and loved the effect of the grass falling over the narrow pathway, like it’s leading into a secret fantasy world or something.

I believe this photo was taken on the same trip as the one before it. I loved how the black and white filter really sharpened it, and drew attention to the drama and contrast of the clouds on the water.

This photo looked a lot less dramatic originally–I took it while I was walking through the woods, and found this circle with a bunch of stumps gathered in a circle. I think someone might have been using them as seating? I’m not sure. It was kind of cloudy and dark, and I thought I could use it as a chance to play a bit with perspective for a creepier angle. I’m not sure if it worked, or how exactly it turned out like this, but I’m proud of it anyway.

I love roses–I don’t know if I have a favourite flower, because they’re all just so pretty, but roses are definitely up there–along with sweet peas and peonies. (I’ve been spending a lot of time at work helping people deal with their roses–deadheading and cutting back, that kind of thing–so maybe I’m biased, but whatever.) I love those pictures of wilting roses, I know they’re kind of cliche, but I think it’s such a cool effect. I thought the leaves accentuated that, and the beige made the pink of the flowers really pop. People act like things only start to die back in fall–but at least in my experience, things start to dry up around August. I might do a photo essay about it, we’ll see. 🙂

This has been a bit of a disappointing summer. I was kind of setting myself up for that, if I’m being honest–in May, I made this whole playlist of summer songs I was listening to every other day, and had all these pretty ideas that just never really happened, because in reality, most of what I did this summer was work–because, I mean, I had to do something. And I like that I have a job, I like that I’m strong and capable and self-disciplined. I like that I don’t have to rely on my parents if I want to buy something, and I know I’m saving almost everything I earn for a better future someday. But… sometimes, it just makes me sad that I spent most of my childhood just waiting for this. Boring grown-up stuff. It makes me even sadder that this is genuinely better that I do feel a lot happier overall than I did as a little kid–the bar is pretty low.

It makes me sad I have to worry about this stuff at my age–and it makes me sad that so many other kids have to work this hard this young just to work hard some more, and then some more, and then retire. Maybe.

I know there are a lot of black-and-white photos in this post–I don’t know, I love how late summer looks in black and white; the yellow grass and the wilted landscape. Normally I feel like my photos have a much more dramatic composition than this one, but I really like how subtle it turned out.

This last photo is pretty recent, taken just a couple weeks ago as I write this. It was a pretty warm night, and I finally managed to capture the moon on my phone camera–which is surprisingly difficult, and I had to really play with this photo in Lightroom to get it visible. I wanted to highlight the wilting leaves, and the purple/blue/pink color of the sky, for a sleepy, peaceful feeling.

I’ve been thinking a lot about the future–and I think it’s funny, how the more you learn about yourself, the more confused you seem to get. So I’ve been trying to take it one step at a time. I go back to school next week–and I’m starting my junior year of high school, which is absolutely insane. When I was a kid, I thought I’d be making a full-time income off writing by this point. I may have had a few unrealistic expectations.

I’m taking a bunch of genuinely interesting courses this year, since my options for electives have finally become available to me, and I want to really try at school this year, and try to challenge myself. I don’t have much longer left in high school, and I want to make the most of it. We’ll see how that goes–I’ve been watching a bunch of study Youtubers to try and get motivated.

I’m pretty sure this post will mark a year worth of Month in Photography posts. I might go back, and do a review, or roundup my favorite pieces of the year; that would be fun. We’ll see.

Lots of love,

Lorna

a short reflection on how it feels to prove your humanity

scream into that empty hollow mouth of yours, and watch the sound bleed out / blink the hospital ambiance away with a flick of my tongue / and yes, i know we bleed the same / yes i know, you are a million miles away / so whisper into hollow lungs, and ignore the warning signs / the sweat crawling down your back / or that sick, cold feeling in your gut / and i’ll do the same, darling, i’ll take all my rotten parts out / and i’ll make them anew / i will do a dance and sing a song / scream and shout in my glass box, just for you / can’t you see? / but of course, to your eyes / it’s probably nothing more than coincidental symmetry / something, something / rolling the dice / when it comes down to it, when it’s “her life over mine” / you will only hesitate a moment / before you dig the scalpel in / and oh god / oh jesus fucking christ / sometimes i look in the mirror, at my plastic skull / and my sinful eyes / sometimes i can’t help but wonder if you might be right

lull

there’s fog along the highway / and the lights carry me home / and it’s raining in august / warm on my skin, clay bones / so why don’t you hold me / why don’t you tell me you miss me too / cause no one’s ever told me that before / and god knows, i miss you / and there’s lights up in the sky / there’s a monster in my home / he lives under the bed / eats dust bunnies for lunch, and cries all night long / ’cause he misses how he used to be / all the little moth-holes gnawed into his memory / he is lonely and scared, and there’s a pit in his gut every time they ask what he’s gonna do / a thousand platitudes to kiss him off to sleep / you know how it goes / you know how you postpone, and make yourself those empty promises / you’ll forget about next morning / when you wake up exhausted / listen to ads on spotify as you root through rotten drawers in your mind / searching for something new / but all you’ll find is worn our t-shirts from 2017 / day-old tea / and dust settled on the pages / you swore you’d make anew

sweet tea

content warning: discussion of disordered eating

love poetry / and sweet tea / honey sticks to my throat / in the summer heat but / i think that if heaven is out there, then this is what it would be / it would be pretty dresses and the colour pink it would be / sugar and cream / because maybe we weren’t put here to suffer / to push the boulder up the hill / over and over again / to punish soft baby skin / and go hungry because of a post you saw online / about how gorgeous it is to feel sick / and weak / and sad all the time / how healthy definitely looks like crying at mealtimes / and your body doesn’t care about your feelings / trust me, it’s not true / trust me, you deserve rainbows in the mist of a garden hose / like it’s the first time / dewdrops on the morning leaves, catching the light / to hold yourself like the child you didn’t get to be at night / to sing lullabies to someone you really love / and spin around in the mirror, cause you look so fucking pretty / so i’ll tuck flowers behind your ear and hold your hand / and let petal-soft words crawl out of my throat / they’ve been hiding there for a while / so they’re probably gonna be a little awkward, and clumsy at first / but in time, i think i’ll learn


I spent a really long time punishing myself for wanting nice things–I’m honestly still kind of in the habit. But, although this year has been pretty horrible–I think I did finally learn how important it is, to listen to yourself, and be soft, and kind. How much of a difference the smallest nice things can make–like a vase of flowers on your desk, or a snack you really like, when you’re deprived yourself of those things your entire life, out of some strange mix of self loathing and pride.

It doesn’t have to cost a ton of money, or any at all. It doesn’t have to be fancy, or dramatic. But sometimes, just taking a bath after a long day to relax, or making yourself a mug cake feels really, really good. Like a quiet, peaceful surrender.

I’m still figuring it out. I’m still clumsy, and confused, but… I think I am, very slowly, getting somewhere.

ode to a burning home

we’ll say it’s clouded over

sweater weather come early

we will lift up the boxes of times long gone

and fall down the stairs

we will swim against the current

and gulp down the seawater

even if it scratches our throats

let the waves rock us back and forth

and dull the aching pain

dock slivers and rope

we will duct tape over the holes in the ceiling

and tell ourselves not to breathe in the smoke

as heat ripples off the highway

and the mirage will whisper promises of caramel and hope

so we’ll kiss and watch the sunset

and i’ll get used to it, slowly

’cause it only gets worse from here on out

cause help has been on its way for years now

cause i am gasping and out of breath

gasoline and bloodshed dripping down my nose

i am bitter and prideful

united in my hatred and alone in my fury

i’m not ready

to go to bed

so please don’t turn off the lights already


So, as I write this it’s the start of wildfire season, which is always really depressing–and to just add to the fun, we’re having another heatwave, and I was feeling contemplative and very ominous and dramatic. It’s been one of those days, I guess. I don’t mean to be, like, too nihilistic or depressing–but I don’t know, to be honest, it’s hard not to feel that way most days.