Artful Blogging Magazine Feature!

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Full 8 page article published in Artful Blogging Magazine – Aug/Sept/Oct 2015

by Joy Prouty

 

“A daydream is a musing or fantasy while awake, a fulfillment of wishes, a fond hope. I have made it my goal to find ways to crawl within my children’s daydreams and chase after this fond hope. Taking part of their imaginative play and making it my own has deepened my art and enabled my once heavy heart to grasp ahold of a world full of everyday magic and wonder. I love the wild, messy, unrehearsed tales knit together by dandelions and the capes made of towels pulled down from the clothesline as they act out their stories, wearing crowns weaved from cherry blossoms by dirt caked hands.

 

Hope is the thing that keeps us going, that allows us to not fall into a weary slumber of discouragement and despair. I’ve been there, I’ve experienced despair, and I have had seasons where I considered the idea that perhaps the darkness was the place my most “authentic” art would be found, but there was always a pulling within my soul toward the light. Light is, in truth, the natural agent that stimulates sight and makes things visible. Trying to feel my way in the dark had only led me to stumble. I began to remember that childlike faith was always my lantern, the illumination to my path.

 

I sat beneath our willow tree last week and watched my children at play, completely free as they sang melodies to the birds and spoke of the tales that spun in their minds. Their happiness was not dependent upon achievements or recognized success; joy was found merely by grabbing hold of the low hanging leaves of the willow tree, swinging from one branch to the next. I ran inside to grab my camera, knowing that the photographs taken would act as visual gratitude lists to look back upon on future weary days. There was a time not long ago where I had made a conscious choice not to pick up my camera, but in the midst of that season I also missed all the joy, and it was the eventual recognition of everyday gratitude present in the midst of that struggle that pulled me out of it. When I quiet my mind to take notice of the details in our days, with no other reason except to pursue being present, I am always drawn to the bright spots. When I close my mouth and take my lens cap off, I allow myself to listen.  That is what photographs have always been for me: stepping stones into a place of clarity.

 

It is so easy to get lost within the traffic of my mind: the to-do lists, the endless burdens of grown-up obligations and worry that has the ability to consume any shred of creativity lurking beneath. It’s really just fear of the unknown in pretty packaging. But when I allow myself to exhale and take notice of my place in nature without obligation to technology or hustle, I can literally feel the stress drip out of my body and the inspiration begin to flow from within like a river. This is when the art comes. I join my children in their fairytales, I envision a castle in the sky, a lilypad beneath my head and instead of staring at my phone, I look up, I try to find a picture in a cloud and allow myself to laugh and actually feel the depth of the pleasure. I make sure I have my camera always nearby to document that cloud; another bright spot of hope to add to my treasure chest of gratitude.

 

I spend so many hours working in our garden with the children; it has been the most filling version of meditation for me.  Last summer, when we preserved our food, I found the sweetest jams came from the fruit allowed to ripen on the vine the longest.  My sweet pea flowers had their most lovely aroma once fully in bloom.  And my brussels sprouts, if picked too soon, were too bitter to taste.  It was all about needing enough time to mature.

 

The season that is unrushed has the most beautiful harvest.

 

My photography has come full circle, and in the digging I have realized that the strongest inspiration for my art has always been in the simplicity of childhood. After years of working tirelessly to infuse creativity into my business, I turned a corner not long ago and now allow myself to indulge in daydreaming and let my creativity lead my business. As I have dug in deeper, clients have followed along, making the business side of things no longer feel like work, and allowing my art to flourish from a more rich, personal place. When I lift my camera to my eye, I don’t always aim to get the perfect exposure, but more, I look for a creative way to show hope illuminated. When I compose a photograph to be shared, I yearn to plant seeds of inspiration in the viewer to seek out wonder in their own surroundings. This beauty is always found within, in the capacity of one’s willingness to breathe in a moment and exhale, conjuring up daydreams in the mundane everyday.”

 

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*magazine is currently available at local bookstores and magazine stands!

Posted in News, Press | 2 Comments

Katie Daisy – at home & in her studio.

 

“It is the sweet, simple things of life which are the real ones after all.”

– Laura Ingalls Wilder

 

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i first met katie daisy years ago, purely as the artist that i had admired from afar and whose soulful paintings i looked upon in my home as inspiration to breathe deeply throughout my days. from that time, our connection grew and i had the honor of documenting her with her fiancé eli among the aspens and wildflowers in bend, oregon, the town they met and fell in love. within katie i saw a passion grow, a depth and sensitivity towards this man and a freedom in sharing life alongside another. her heart had begun to swell and it was undeniably reflected not only in her art but in her spirit. and now, in my my recent trip to bend, their two hearts, now sewn together, had grown tenfold as they had welcomed a new bloom to their garden… sweet little finn. and in katie i saw a raw beautiful vulnerability unravel. where once there may have been a pondering and a quiet, i now saw an open spilling out of overwhelming pure selfless ever-expanding love. it was motherhood. she was now the sheltering tree that had grown to shade the tiny being before her while still swaying ever so gently in the breeze, allowing nature and her beloved to lead her spirit forward.

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i spent the day and evening in the place they call home; their cabin in the woods, with a river running just beside it, surrounded by wildflowers, tall ferns and the so very present aroma of contentment flowing through. it was a relaxing family morning in the cabin, followed by adventuring, and then when eli went to work in the afternoon i had the gift of seeing katie at work in her studio, with sweet finn snoozing on her back. melodies poured from their home all day… some from the radio, some created by eli, a few sung sweetly by katie to the babe on her breast, but mostly i heard the humming of nature all around them and the way it almost radiated from within them.

 

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“Yes, I need you, my fairytale. Because you are the only person i can talk with about the shade of a cloud, about the song of a thought – and about how, when i went out to work today and looked a tall sunflower in the face, it smiled at me with all of it’s seeds.”- Vladimir Nabokov

 

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Posted in * Family Sessions, Harvest Sessions | 16 Comments

wildflower. mother. wife. believer. artist. farmer. writer. dreamer.

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