I’m very excited to share someone very wonderful with all of you today. Her name is Angela Hendrix- Petry, and I was first introduced to her close to two years ago via Flickr. I added her as a contact because I admired her photography. Her light filled images always had a way of cheering me on the dullest of days. We began commenting on each other’s photos, and I would say we became fast Flickr friends. The more I got to know her, I fell in love with more than her photographs. I fell in love with her attitude, her positive outlook on life. She always has a way of making the most simple of things, beautiful. We’ve never met face to face, but she is a close friend. I know that the day we do meet, there will be tears and lots and lots of hugs. She has been a motivational person in my life, and I am so happy to share a part of her with you. She happily answered some questions for me this week, and sent over some of her gorgeous photos.
Interview and photos courtesy of Angela. ❤
Me- Hi Angela!! Thank you so much for doing this, I am so happy to have you as a the first inspiring woman here on my blog. Thank you for your continuing inspiration through your words and photos.Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
I am a woman who lives to savor the
beauty in the ordinary. I spent the 1st five years of my childhood
living in the country with my grandparents who lived so simply, I
spent whole days just wandering outside among the trees and the birds
in the sunlight, and was shaped by those early experiences in a very
profound way…I watch and listen closely, always drinking in my
surroundings, always ready to notice the beauty often overlooked by
others. Nowadays, as a mama to four (!) it’s rare to have a day when
I’m not pulled in many directions (usually all at once!), but my
heart’s compass is still set to seek comfort in moments of unhurried
grace. Looking through the lens of my camera for the divine in the
mundane has become a tool to help bring me deeper into connection with
the child I was, and the woman/mother that I long to be.
Me: Have you always been an artist?
Yes. I have always been an artist,
but it took seeing myself through the lens of photography to
acknowledge that and to truly feel it…I’ve always written in journals,
painted, collaged, etc. I have always lived to create beauty, to
express emotions, to tell a story, and my camera has helped me to find
a way to bring the artist out of the shadows, and into the light. I
think we all have a whole heck of a lot of art inside us, just waiting
to be brought to the surface and shared…
Me: Tell us about your photography.
I am in love with the way photography
has gifted my life with a way to express the deep feelings I feel, the
beauty I bear witness too, the divinity I find in light, the emotion
in shadow…the way it helps me to focus my attention on what is right
in front of me, begging for notice. The morning light on my son’s
bedhead, the tenderness in a handful of bird feathers, utter
awesomeness in the ordinary. I have never taken a photography course,
I can barely find my way around LR, I shoot by feel, I edit by
instinct. I think in a lot of ways this is one of my greatest assets.
I have no photography rules to crowd out my vision; I bring beginner’s
mind and my own intuition to every single image I capture.
Me: When did you pick up your camera and know it was love?
I was gifted my
first camera after a rough few years, years in which my family and I
were struggling with letting go of some big dreams… My husband gave me
a camera for Christmas two years ago, and it quickly became a healing
therapy for me to seek out moments of stillness and grace in our day
to day lives, it quickly became apparent to me how much capturing
these moments fed my gratitude, and nourished my creative spirit. It’s
really been love at first click!
Me: What Inspires you?
Light! Sunlight and the inner light inside of us
all… I am inspired by so many, and so much, but light is my muse…
Me: I think one of the keys to enjoying life to the full is savoring the
simple things. Your photos speak volumes on the subject, and your name
even on Flickr is Journeys with a simple girl.
Tell me a little bit about the name, and as a mom how are you instilling
this simple living in your children? I find it so hard in a world
that’s moving at a breakneck pace.
I am a simple girl at heart. I am so easily overwhelmed with options,
choices, technology, and constant chatter. My photography is my life
raft through this world of too much and too many. There is a beautiful
synergy; I take photos of what I seek and then I share them, and often
times in the sharing the images gift others the comfort I long for
from them…it’s a really beautiful thing!
It’s a struggle for me to keep things simple with four children
ranging in age from almost sixteen to five! It’s important to me for
us all to have meals together, because I feel sitting around the table
at the end of the day helps us to remember where we come from and to
whom we belong, and I think it’s so good to feel held by your family
in this world of so much spinning. I also try really hard to encourage
my kiddos to create with their own two hands; whether that’s baking
from scratch, drawing with markers and paper, building things from
salvaged wood, or playing music. I think creating is a good way to
learn about yourself, and it’s so good to know your own heart when
faced with so much stimulation from the outside world. I also try to
get us all out into nature as often as possible; the natural world is
a great remedy for the over scheduled blues.
Me: You and the sun have a very special relationship. Your photos capturing the suns rays take my breath away. They amaze me every time. Tell me a little bit about your bond.
My love affair with the sun started at a very young age. I can
remember being mesmerized by sunlight filtered through green leaves
when I was just a little girl, being moved to tears by winter sunsets
when I was in elementary school, and I remember laying out in the sun
on a silver reflective blanket in my teens trying to get a really dark
tan (seriously, who ever thought that was a good idea?!) and feeling
the deepest peace I’d ever known. I guess in a way I am always trying
to express the awe and wonder I feel about the sun’s amazingness
through my light drenched images.
Me: Do rainy days make you sad?
Angela: I love a good rainy day at home when the
tea kettle is whistling and there is a good book calling my name…rainy
days do hold their own charm, but I do feel my best on the days when
the light is sweet.
Me: I started this blog, to help me and others, women especially, be more
happy with themselves.
We are all deserving of that love.
How do you practice self-love in your life?
Angela: I have learned that when
my well is dry, the giving that is required of me in my family and
professional life leaves me feeling spent and resentful, which is not
how I want to live. I am so touched by you starting this blog with the
intention of encouraging yourself and others to take good care, and to
feel more contentment. Self-love is ever evolving for me. One day it
might mean gifting myself the time to bake bread on a day when my
schedule feels too full, just because I need to have the sensual
experience of kneading the dough to bring me back to center. Another
day it might mean turning off the computer and putting myself to bed
early when sleep is what I need to feel balanced. Self-care is about
listening to what my heart and body need, and doing my best to meet
those needs. I always feel better when I take the time to write out my
feelings in my journal, walk in the woods, or do some simple yoga
stretches. Listening to music is also restorative for me.
Me: Do you have any special goals you are working towards this year?
Angela: I am
on a journey of reclamation and integration. I have been in full on
mama mode for the better part of a decade and a half, my kiddos are
getting bigger, still needing me, but needing me in different ways…I
feel it’s time for me to work on areas of my life that have been
neglected and left dormant since becoming a mom. I really want to feel
whole, and completely and utterly at home in my life.
Me: And last but not least, have you chosen a word to inspire you as you go through 2012?
Angela; Yes, my
word for 2012 is Become. I love so much about the possibilities this
word offers…I want to become the woman I am meant to be…
I was so inspired by this, and I hope you were too. Life is so incredibly busy, there is so much going on at all times. But take a moment.
Breathe in the air. Look around.Listen Feel. So many little moments are happening all the time.
Take the time to enjoy them.
Find your inspiration-
This one is dedicated to Angela. Thank you.