Rome – eat, shoot, love
Rome. The city of… what really? The city of so many things and the first and only question is The Why. Why Rome? There are several answers but the first is because I wanted to attend the event Way Up North. A conference for around 500 weddingphotographers from all over the world. Of course it was amazing! With ten absolutely totally talented speakers, each and every one with their own unique talent and special style, and each and every one with their truth. Their voice. Their Why. I was totally blown away and I sucked up as much information as I possibly could. Why? To grow, both as a person and as a photographer, to take better images, to dig deeper to find the real story, how to tell the story, to find my own truth and answer my own Why. To find my voice.
With big eyes I listen, and wrote anything interesting down (well, everything to be honest, as fast as I could). I thought to myself I’ll sort this out later. Two days, thousand of images, thousand of impressions, thousands of epiphanies, and all I have to do is to apply them to me and I’ll come out as a virgin on the other side.
Two days of Why. Two days of amazing people, amazing and beautiful artists, talented as hell each and every one of them. But they aren’t me. I’m not them, you, anyone else. I’m me. So, what am I then? The suffering artist, who see beauty in the dark, dark images and creates art every time the shutter goes off? No. The epic artist, who creates those totally breathtaking images you want to cover your wall with, even though you have no idea who the wedding couple are in the image? No. The lucky artist, who by chance just happens to push the trigger in the exactly right moment each and every time? I wish, but no. Or am I an artist at all? Is the question as simple as that?
After this two days I want to change, I want to find my own voice, but to find it, I have to exclude who I’m not. So, I started with a nice and comfy hangover from the party the last evening. And after a friend of mine draged me up for a long, hot and somewhat depressing walk, I decided not to decide. I just wanted to take a shower, have pizza and a glas of wine. I just wanted to enjoy the nowness!
Why? Because there is Love!
I met up with my dear friend and roommate, Karolina Ehrenpil, who’s boyfriend had arrived to Rome. My husband had also traveled to Rome so we could have a few days to celebrate our tenth anniversary. So, me and Karolina met up to photograph each other in a short couple session and we wanted to make it visible in our images that we were in Rome, so Colosseum was – of course – the perfect place!
The words from all the speakers went through my mind as I started to shoot. And to shoot another photographer is really scary, because we know what we want, and what the photographer are doing and we know quite a few tricks in the book. That’s really hard because no matter what you do, you think about what the photographer you are shooting, is going to think about the images. So, after about ten minutes, after taking turns in front of the camera, Karolina put me in front of a spot that she really liked. And when it got my turn to shoot, I tried to take the image that I knew Karolina would like. Then she said, just kind of by the way, – it’s going to be so exiting to see what images you are creating from this, because I want images in your style! And then it hit me, I realized that I was trying to create something from what she liked, not what I liked. I mean, I loved the setting, but the image I was trying to create – wasn’t MY image. It wasn’t MY voice, not MY why…
And I felt like screaming and laughing like crazy, because that’s the point! She didn’t want me to be someone else! She wanted me to be ME! She wanted MY voice!
Because I already had a voice, but not until now I listened! I was so busy with listening to what’s right or wrong, what you should do or don’t do, what’s a good image and what’s a bad image, the trends and what’s in and what’s out. There was so much noice I didn’t hear ME.
Because there is Love!
I already have a voice. I already have a Why. And an answer. Because there is Love!
Sometimes, it’s just as simple as that. Love is the answer. I love listening to other people and their stories, and I love looking at epic images, and the one more beautiful image after the other. Each and every one is amazing and the creator is a true artist with images that really speaks to my heart. And as long as we don’t try to be anything else than who we are, we are true artists. And sometimes we are not. Sometimes we are just tourists who wants to sit down and have a huge cold beer, sometimes we just want to shoot things because they are beautiful, or ugly, or has a interesting shape, or is funny, sad, tragic, or you want to freeze the every day moment just for your own memories. Sometimes you want to tell an important story, something close to your heart, with a personal project that really means something to you. Sometimes you want to take snapshots on pretty flowers, or moody dark dramatic images, it doesn’t matter what you shoot, as long as you are true to yourself. Because you are you, and you have your own voice. And as long as you have an open heart and allow yourself to be the one you really are, allow yourself to grow, to learn, to share, to love, everything is going to be alright!
So, eat, love, chill and have a beer! And wave to the pope with his funny hat! He looks like a nice guy!