It took a long time to get their wedding images to them.
I had woefully underpriced it as a young photographer, and was an absolute beginner at absolutely everything else I needed to know to complete it.
Time went by, the negatives got dutifully boxed up every move, and sat unexamined until 4 months ago, when I opened the files to find images I wanted to print.
And there was single-page wedding contract in the file. And in the special request section:
"I'm so excited you'll be doing our wedding photos, especially after seeing more of your work!
The images you capture are precisely the sort I want to preserve, and the artistry with which you capture them is truly impressive!"
I felt a flush of shame and my stomach plummeted: It took all this time to see these words.
But intuition had me see it for a reason.
I put the words on the wall where I could see them every day. Each time I felt shame, I forgave myself and the circumstances, releasing all the negative memories associated with the project, enabling me to come back to it, to look forward to creating it with new ideas and freshness -
-especially to make it beautiful to several senses: eyes, scent, and touch.
I saw myself completing the process, holding the photographs, smelling the scent and rasp of paper and pen and glue.
I let it go, whether I was inspired or pricked by it, and with it, of the biggest, longest 'artist blocks' I have ever had.
It took a long time to get their images to them. But I did, a chilly evening on the Year of the Dog.
As she and her husband sit in their shared memories, her smiles warm and illuminate the room.