Wednesday, March 17, 2010

{sweet new love...}

Ladies and Gentlemen...
Please allow me to introduce to you the newest member of Fifteen:Fifty-One Photography...

Hudson Daniel Smyth
Born March 11th, 2010

While I don't think that he'll be coming to shoots with me anytime soon...I definitely think that he'll be my go-to model for the next little while!!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

{my southern cross...}

When I was younger, I was just in love with the stars. I was in love with the stars the way most preteen girls are in love with Edward Cullen! My love for them was insatiable and undying! I would passionately memorize the number of light years from Earth to the Moon and better yet, I actually knew the distance of a light year (which has long been forgotten!)! I could tell you all about Cassiopeia and the make up of a horse head nebula. Astronomy took my breath away!

Now this is where my story takes a bit of a bizarre twist...

Around this same time is when my Dad got me my first Nintendo (we're talking the old school original Nintendo that came with Duck Hunt and Super Mario Bros.). One of the games that I got with it was the Legend of Zelda; a fantasy action game in which Princess Zelda (of course!) needs to be rescued. The hero of our adventure uses the Southern Cross, a constellation predominantly found in the Southern Hemisphere, to find his way to his beloved and this, my friends, becomes the story behind of how I officially felt the need to see this constellation for myself!

And that's how the story stayed for about the next twenty years; me and a constellation patiently waiting on the other side of the world for our great reunion!

Then, two years ago, my husband and I found ourselves being driven out to the middle of nowhere (also known as the Australian Outback) for dinner and a date with an astronomer and his telescopes. We had booked this night almost six months prior to our trip and even before we got to our destination, we knew it had been worth it. We had flown across the world to one of the most beautiful places on the planet and I was about to see the Southern Cross with my very own eyes.

We were, quite literally, in the middle of nowhere. We had driven nearly five hours from the small town of Alice Springs to our hotel and from there, were being driven to a small sand dune surrounded by nothing but red sand as far as the eye could see. We were facing Ayers Rock in one direction and the Olgas in the other. It was, for lack of a better word, spectacular.

As the sun went down, we were served champagne and hors d'oeuvres of crocodile and kangaroo (it's not so bad...kinda taste like chicken!) followed by a candlelit dinner by one of the regions finest chefs and sat under a sky that put a kink in my neck for an entire week! Without any city lights for hundreds of kilometres, the night sky lit up with shooting stars and constellations of the likes that I had never before, and have never again, witnessed in my life.

Then came the best part of all; as we were served dessert, an astronomer joined us with a few of his telescopes and gave us a guided tour of the night sky. From Saturn's rings to a Milky Way that made you want to surf in it, the sky became our playground and would become one of our best memories of our trip Down Under. And there was, of course, the Southern Cross...just as beautiful as I always imagined it would be.

I only took one picture from that night; it's fuzzy, out of focus and taken long before I ever picked up a camera professionally...but it's also one of my favourite pictures ever. As I was recently going through our vacation pictures, it stood out to me because when I look back to the day, when I first longed to look up at that sky, it never once occurred to me that I wouldn't see it. I had decided then and there, that one day I wouldn't just dream about it...I would experience it...I would live it.

That moment matters even more to me now than it did then because there is an entire world out there waiting for us...and with my son due any day now (he's actually four days late...I'm considering grounding him for his tardiness!), I want more than anything for him to not only dream about those things...but I want him to live them. I want him to know with utmost certainty that the world, with all of its wonder, is his for the taking.

Perhaps it won't be the Southern Cross or swimming with sea turtles at the Great Barrier Reef but whatever it is...I hope that we can help him get there because at this moment, when this picture was taken, while he may not have existed in our lives at the time, we longed for him the way my ten year old self longed for the night sky...

Get here soon little man...we can't wait to meet you!

(I forgot to watermark it...but it's still mine!!!)