“I realized I was so good at posing, that that was part of the reason I was there. My feelings were moving and she would capture those moments–and that was life changing.” [copyright Lone Morch]
As a photographer, can you see when the walls come down, when your subjects let go and let loose and open up? Can you see transformation happening in front of your lens?
LM: Yes! This work has taught me to see with my heart and about my own creative process. How I dance with the elements, improvise, experiment, play and conjure, push and call forth, all in some desire to unlock, untangle, unveil the ‘truth,’ the core, the essence – that which is inherent, original or true in a person or a story or a journey. Over time I’ve come to focus on the body, asking women to express with their bodies rather than their mind, because the body tells me everything: here I see tightnesses, shames, attitudes, as well as softening, surrender, sensuality, play, ease, freedom. So in a session there’s often a natural progression from veiled to unveiled, My eyes are trained towards those transformational moments where a woman shows up, not as something or other, but as herself. My reaction is visceral, I happy dance, cry, laugh. And I know, I’m witnessing her shift. It’s pretty amazing, and I feel honored each time, as if I was invited into her inner sanctuary.
“I used to be really quiet and shy and now you can’t get me to shut up.” after a session with Lone.
BC: I can associate with this woman so clearly: I can’t stop writing now, it’s like an addiction. It seems to me that you’re opening up a floodgate in these women that might never be closed again. Do you hear from them later on about things that may have changed in their lives?
LM: Yes I do. The intimate nature of this work has brought us close; it’s like a secret community of women spread out in the world who’ve ‘unveiled’. They often share how the experience continues to affect them; they keep discovering things about themselves, their photos, what they see and are ready to see. Many return for more shoots, wanting to explore new facets, feeling more daring. It’s wonderful to follow women’s unfolding this way. Of course I don’t know the depth of their experience and transformation, but there’s no doubt we’ve all been touched and touched each other.
“It empowers you to do more. If you can bare your soul and the essence of you are on film, then why can’t you just face the real world?”
“I became a lot more freer. I just tend to not really care what people think anymore.”
BC: Lone, I have to stop quoting what these women are saying because there are just too many of them that bring up the similarities with letting go of yourself through Writing Every Day. I know that you’re also a writer, what similarities do you see between these experiences for these woman in front of the lens and with your experience writing?
LM: It’s painting. With words. With light. It’s telling stories in pictures. It’s distilling a moment in a poetic light. It’s capturing a feeling. Rather than me, my paper and pen, my mind, memory and imagination, this is me, her, the environment and everything we both bring to it that very day, that very moment, and from there, we create. The muse definitely shows up. When I shoot I always find myself seeking out ‘the story’, what is going on, what is she trying to express. The light is my main paint brush. Shadow. Light. Disguise. Illuminate. It’s tempting to say I see the light in every woman. But this is pretty much what’s going on. It’s addictive, deeply satisfying, humbling and very alive.
“I became me, after the photos.”