the editor of DP Magazine mentioned wanting to use my photography on the cover of this month’s How-To issue. our email correspondences shuffled around my inbox and i guess it didn’t hit me until we stood before it in the bookstore. river nudged me, “mom is that you?!” and then we both laughed. out loud. it was like a secret language of love for the universe and the path that we have walked together over the years and me watching him grow into the tender soul he is and him watching me bloom into what i always felt that i was inside.
the absurdity of it, really.
and simultaneously how completely normal it is.
to see your mom on the cover on a magazine?
to see your own art on the cover of a major magazine?
my tongue feels fat in my mouth and my eyes sting and my heart hums.
“you obviously inherited your mother’s legs,” my father tells me many days later when his copy arrives in the mail. he brought the magazine to the memory center where my mother lives and pointed to the cover. “that’s meredith winn” she remarked, then again, on each subsequent page. each one making her cry. she feels me through my photography. it’s a double edged sword.
everything i write i write for her.
it provokes happiness that she still sees me. sadness that she remembers it like a dream. through this process i experience missing, pride, connectedness, and a sense of joy in the truth that i can still share it with her. joy in the truth that my son sees me as something i always wanted to be. writer. photographer. i am these things and so much more. everything i write, i also write for him.
i act like a goober and stand in the sunlight, in the field, with my tripod and self timer and can’t seem to get a decent shot of this magazine. it doesn’t look like me… the me i perceive myself to be? the me that others see when meeting me for the first time? i am the blend of all the versions of myself i’ve ever been. even now after years and years of writing and photography, after years of publishings, after exhibits and magazines… i still have a hard time. it’s a never ending process. that’s the truth. it doesn’t look like me because i’m constantly evolving before my own eyes.
in the pages between covers is where i receive the best compliment. from the editor of DP Magazine himself. i am humbled and honored and want to curl up in the sunshine at the base of my lover’s feet because it’s too good. the light and dark. it makes me feel like a baby without a mother who is being cared for by the entire world. i’m full of love and awe.
and the beauty of it?
i’ve only just been born.
“One of our favorite articles in this issue (DP Magazine Oct 2012) is by Meredith Winn, who you may recognize as a contributor to Shutter Sisters (their work is featured in our regular column, Point of Focus). In “Express Yourself,” Winn offers thoughtful ideas for creating more interesting and authentic self-portraits. Though social networks are gratuitously littered with snapshots of people making silly duck faces, we’re refreshingly reminded that self-portraiture can be a truly personal, elevated art form that’s not contrived out of sheer vanity, but rather emerges from honest experience and introspection.”
– Wes Pitts, Editor DP Magazine