Somewhere between falling asleep and waking up, idea nuggets were dropped into my brain. There are a lot of things going on in and around my life right now, most notably a baby on the way, and a couple friends and family members battling various health problems. These events have seeped into my brain, into my being, and are feeding the ever-growing pressure on myself to create more than just photographs with my photography. Digital art is my medium, my outlet, and I want it–need it–to say something that I can’t begin to express with words (be they spoken or typed).
Upon waking the next morning, I had an idea firmly in place: using the snowy terrain as a backdrop, I wanted to show a striking figure rising from the blanket of white. At the time, I was compelled to do so by the visual alone. I hadn’t yet realized what metaphors my mind was wanting to convey.
That night, after shooting earlier in the morning and afternoon to get the plates and elements I needed for the composite, I set to work and cobbled the pieces together in a few hours. When morning came again, I looked at the piece with fresh eyes and touched up a few things. By that time, my mind had caught up with my mind’s eye and I knew what I was trying to say.
This is an image of birth, rebirth, and revival, of overcoming adversity and standing strong in spite of (or perhaps because of) the overwhelming obstacles in life. Though it’s not true to the implied meaning of the original Swedish proverb (“What is hidden in snow is revealed at thaw”), the title “Brought forth by the thaw” seemed appropriate for a piece that, to me, showcases our ability to find ourselves and our strength in times of extreme difficulty.
-For Rod, Jeff, Maggie, and Myka
Oh, and if you still haven’t bought Brooke Shaden’s new book, Inspiration in Photography, buy it right now.