In November I took a risk. I wrote an essay and sent it to a photographer whose work I am in complete and utter awe of, and gulped. I asked the universe for help, I hoped. I dreamed. I crossed all my fingers and toes and prayed. And in January, the universe answered. I was chosen to attend Clayton Austin‘s first ever Share The Goodness: An Inspiration Shop and I was floored. Excited. Scared. Crazy nervous. I can’t explain why Clayton chose me as an attendee – the essay? Perhaps. My photography? Maybe. But what I can tell you is that in one single day (and two fleeting evenings) my life was forever changed. Not only was I given the opportunity to learn from an incredible photographer, but I was in a studio with some of the most amazing people I have had the pleasure of meeting – talented, humble, funny, candid, amazing people – photographers – who I am honored to be able to call my friends and whose collective body of work astounds me. Justin takes some of the most moving photographs I have ever seen. Tahni, with her amazing sense of style and vintage aesthetic is a true gem and I’m crazy glad we’ve become besties. Kelsea, well, you all know how crazy I am about that girl. Derrek (and his amazing wife Jenn) has an incredible talent with videography and Rocked.Out. his first photoshoot ever (as did Tanner, y’all!). Dave is hilarious and, as a fellow Minnesotan, won’t be free of me any time soon (sorry, friend!) And of course, Clayton. Dear, awesome, humble, hopeless-romantic Clayton. One of the most generous, giving, thoughtful and amazing photographers I’ve had the pleasure to meet. I am forever grateful to you for your candor, your willingness to share the goodness, and your friendship.
Thank you, all of you, for one amazing day of so. much. goodness.
Below are the images I shot of Caroline and Ben during the workshop’s live shoot. Caroline-you are one of the most beautiful women I’ve seen up close, and Ben – the way you love her is beyond words. Thank you both for honoring us all with your story.
Once we believe in ourselves,
we can risk curiosity, wonder, spontaneous delight,
or any experience that reveals
the human spirit.
So here’s to believing. Risking. Wondering. Doing.
Here’s to sharing goodness.
athena, you are so lovely. and so are your amazing photographs! you are going to take minnesota and the world by storm and i’m so excited to see it. also, i can’t believe i have the honor of being named a bestie!
Your words, your images, YOU — all beautiful. I am so incredibly thankful to have you in my life. #truth
Yes, I am bringing the hashtag love to the blog world ;)
like it! Beautiful images.
Wow! You are a great writer and your photos are awesome too. You will go far.
LOOVE the photos! So gorgeous! Ps. I can’t wait to meet you. Fo real.
LOOOVE these Athena! So wonderful! That bamboo made for some super cool additions to your artistry as well! WOW!
Just found your blog- LOVE IT! These photos are seriously gorgeous! What an awesome opportunity.