I started this new thing on Facebook, where I create a photoshoot from the top of my head and 24 hours before, I drop it as a status on Facebook. This way I am not choosing who makes it, whomever sees the post does and sees a fit, they choose.
This particular Pop up shoot was created by a first date. In fact, the pop up shoot was the first date. I met a guy online, and as soon as he found out that I was a photographer, he suggested being my assistant on a shoot. I thought to myself, WHY NOT?! First date guy suggested the Cherry Blossoms at High Park, I thought, WHY NOT?!
Gabe commented on my status with a hell yes and we met for 6pm at High Park, the next evening. There were NO BLOSSOMS, and if there were, they were the size of my Pinkies.
SIDE TRACK // It has been 4 years since my divorce. Most of the wounds have healed. For me, the odd guy wins and obscurity will pull me in. As my impromptu photo-assistant coffee date suggested this date, I thought, WOW, Gabe is a great space holder. What needs to stay will stay, what needs to leave, will leave.
Gabe, has the face of a serious soul. One who has experienced many lives, and one that hugs you with his smile, but you must understand him without the smile first. He walks with you, not in front of you, not behind you. Gabe offered to carry my equipment, time and time again. This man is so much love. When things would fall out of my hand, he would stop me from reaching and pick it up, and not because I am a woman, but because I am important - there is a difference.
My date left in the middle of the photo-shoot. Something made him uncomfortable and he was absolutely honouring where he was at - which is always a good thing. For about 45 seconds, I experienced sadness, an ego trip and then confusion. Gabe's energy and healing brought me back to the shoot. We ended up finding some out of the box shots and he jumped into every opportunity I presented.
The song and dance between subject and photographer was quiet and understood. What we created is beautiful, of course it is. When we are both so wide and open to create whatever shows up, you let the magic show up.
These images hold a breakthrough for me. They remind me of what I desire in a man, what I am willing to fight for and what I am willing to walk away from. These images also evoke the beauty of Gabe - a stunning man, stunning captures and a connection that is forever fused on film.
When I am asked why photography? My response - "My life is empty with out it".
You know that saying? - "Those who can not do, teach"?
Well, Rhea has done, and done and done. Some of her experiences have repeated themselves to the point where she stopped, and said..."Ok, universe, I'm listening now."
Rhea grew up moving from house to house, school to school and that created a tough skin. The kind of skin that became independent, quiet and at times lonely.
Through the years, and the jobs and the relationships and the "I got this" - life became bland and mundane. Then it happened, a beautiful, timely car accident, not one, but two, jolting Rhea into a new reality and her transition begun.
Rhea woke up on January 1st of 2014 and took a good look at her life, all the choices she made, all the things that didn't work, all the places she was complacent and unhappy. She was brought back to all the nights she'd lay in be, dreaming of another life.
Upon learning that she was not the only one who had woken up, her world started shifting at an accelerating rate. She hopped on her new train, and dived deep into health, nutrition, self-development, and attended as many workshops as there were coffees sold at Starbucks on a Monday morning.
Rhea has done the work.
Now, experiences shift us, however it is what YOU do with that shift that matters.
Rhea transitioned, she took her life, shook it up, and created the life she truly desires. What was created was her outburst for life, she begun to attract listeners, who were looking for inspiration, motivation, and a place to speak of their own discoveries that seemed to be so out of the norm.
Rhea became the hub of self-discovery, for herself and for others. She started filming videos every Sunday, coining the term 'Soulful Sundays', where she would openly and HONESTLY share a breakthrough she experienced that week. These shared moments are always powerful, the way she speaks, how she shares always leaves you taking a deep look into your own life, her words singe you with a desire to seek healing and pleasure in places where you have experienced pain or discomfort.
Rhea discovered her business venture through her sharing with others in their shifts and their transitions. She became the go to friend. Her heart is that big, there is room for everyone.
Today, Rhea has taken all that she has done, and created a brilliant garden of experiences to not only assist your life transitions, but to be there with you every step of the way. Like that best friend that always calls when you need.
Check out this Transitions Expert at http://www.rheaanne.com/.
In the world of healing, in the new world of healing, we are all waking up. Medicine is not the only modality. Acupuncture, Reiki, Natural medicine. Ayurvedic, Chinese medicine... we are discovering that these modalities have place in our healing.
Art inspires us, it moves us, and at times art has offered up a great first date! I think the notion of Reiki existed in paintings - always. The difference being that the intent was artist healing themselves through their self-expression.
Ioanna paints. She paints with intention, and healing for others. Her paintings are filled with Reiki healing. Imagine receiving a piece of art that heals you every time you walk by it?
'Heal the world' has a whole new meaning all of a sudden.
Creativity is a drug I cannot live without.
Cecil B. DeMille
The story of Surrender...
I was listening to the backdrop of conversations from a TV show a friend was watching, scrolling through Facebook posts and doing my usual end of evening tasks. Brushing my teeth, washing my face and preparing for the next day. I was thinking about my life and where it is, as if it had somewhere to be. Some destination to arrive at. I am learning this is not the case. When your life is not doing what you think it should be...surrender.
Surrender to not knowing the next moment, the future, or the next move. I truly believed that I was living life freely. That I was "going with the flow." I was doing no such thing. I was securing my safety nets, and I was taking calculated risks. I was playing it safe.
Very recently, I demoted myself at my day job, left a roommate to find my own sacred space. And in all of that, dealing with some heavy duty unforeseen personal taxes and building my business. I was lost, so lost – so scared –living between homes, not knowing what was next. Where was I? Where did I put myself? What was I doing? Did I take too many risks? How many risks does a risk taker risk?
As my head hit the pillow and I started to think about what dreams I may have the honour of escaping into, I had a vision. He was a man – living in a big city, well dressed and well to do; he has a stream of delicious dreams. He thinks. A lot. He thinks about God, about love, and what is missing in his life.
Is it love?Is it God?Is it truth?Is it a woman?Is it a man? Is it himself?
He is alone...but not by choice. He is alone, because, well, he dreams. He dreams so much that he could get lost in a phrase, a thought, or a dream.
After a day of dreaming, he surrenders to the night, travels the city and dances in the streets. He surrenders himself to the quiet, the alone, and the unknown.
This is a story about "having it all in life". Having everything you have ever dreamed of and still feeling empty.
Yearning and dreaming forever to fill this cup with just about anything – Anything! – only to discover that what you truly desire to put in your cup are the things you have been ignoring.
It was a balmy Sunday morning. Sleeping in was a bad idea that day. The house was empty, I was left with all the air to myself. I love that feeling, when you wake up and you just know you are the only one home. The sound of empty.
As I lay in bed catching up on all the articles I saved that week, I scrolled to my hearts content as the sun laid her rays all over the bed - I thought to myself - I could not possibly be the only one who feels this deeply, the walls of her home. They speak all the time, the edge of the first step on the stair case, that spot in the living room you love to stand in and watch - what do we watch?
I was looking for a home to photograph for my Real Estate portfolio, so I posted on facebook, looking for that special home. When I found it, the intention was to capture images for a mock sell sheet I was going to send to Agents all across Toronto. I found the home, or rather, the home found me.
J picked me up from my place and as we drove in the bright Sunday sun, our romanticism of homes met over a timmies coffee. So many ideas were being birthed before we even reached her home.
We swooned over all the joys of life that we just don't talk about, day to day. We want more conversations that sound like this..."omg I had the most delicious bath with the sun on my bed, and it was healing and I had the most delicious realization".