Happy holidays, Darkroom Dwellers. I hope that your week has been as rich with the love of friends and family as ours has been.
This Christmas we took some time to slow down and reconnect. We ate too much, we drank too much and we have enjoyed ourselves to the fullest. We have had our art on display at The Barley Vine Rail in Orangeville, had some tremendous portrait shoots and added some versatile new lighting gear to the studio.
This has also been one of the coldest Christmases that I can remember and, after our balmy Christmas in southern California last year, it has been a charming reminder of what it means to be Canadian.
It was around this time of year in 2005 that I penned a short story called "November Garden". It's a story about two young sisters curious about death. When one of the women is taken by disease, the other has her body interred at the base of an apple tree and, by eating the fruit of the tree, takes her sister's physical and spiritual essence into herself to carry with her in a macabre and cannibalistic rebirth. "November Garden" took first place in a writing contest and earned me a workshop scholarship at Humber College in Toronto. "November Garden" is one of my proudest artistic achievements.
This year, Tara and I decided to use some of our time together to create images that capture an aspect of her that few people are lucky enough to be acquainted with and bring haunting new images to the Pumpkin House library.
This one is called the November Garden and it marks Tara's debut as a Pumpkin House model. Every one of us has a story. Tara's story is hers alone to tell - or to bury in an orchard - and just like the young women in my short fiction, this photograph is a tale of sorrow and rebirth - loss and reclamation.
I love you, Tara.
Merry Christmas, friends. Happy new year.