About a year ago, I was celebrating the birthday of a dear friend with afternoon tea and open air theater at Ickworth. There was a diverse group of women of all ages and nationalities making for some amazing conversation and laughs. I found myself seated next to a woman named Carola – she was dressed in a stunning lime, black and pink dress and just radiated confidence and warmth. I soon learned that she is a talented massage therapist and devoted practitioner of the Baha’i faith. Originally from Germany with a love for traveling to beautiful places, Carola’s enthusiasm for life was absolutely infectious.
This summer, Carola messaged me saying her daughter, Antine, would be visiting and she was interested in having some photos done. I loved the idea of a mother-daughter session and the dynamic of two adults. Since Antine is quite private, Carola hoped that a documentary session would make her feel more at ease since she didn’t have to do any posing or smiling on command. This was music to my ears; I love when the concept of candid photos just clicks with my clients!
On the drive out to Thetford Forest, I learned that Antine is studying woodworking and is one of a tiny number of women in her program. She absolutely lit up talking about her studies and the way advances in technology have opened up amazing new techniques. I know very little about woodworking, but listening to Antine’s excitement and expertise in her chosen subject made me want to learn all about it. When a person has found their “thing,” the energy is contagious. This is the way I feel about photography and design – hours feel like minutes when I’m working or talking about it – and I hope someday my own children will find something that makes them feel that way as well.
As we walked through the forest, the conversation continued; covering everything from childhood to being a female in a male dominated profession. It was fun to watch the dynamic between mother and daughter as Carola is very open and transparent while Antine is much more private and reserved. Every once in a while, there would be a moment of laughter and I saw Carola’s smile in her daughter’s face.
To Carola and Antine: thank you so much for welcoming me into your day and sharing a bit of yourselves with me. While I’m certainly not fluent in German, there’s no mistaking the tone of a mother and daughter’s playful bickering in any language! I hope you see your natural beauty and messy love when you look at these images and that they will grow in meaning for you as the years pass.
And if you’re in need of an amazing massage to help you relax and unwind, Carola is the one to call! She is trained in a number of techniques including Hawaiian Lomi Lomi massage, Eastern bamboo massage and even Reiki. You can find all the info on her website: carolaa.com