Yes, it already is, I’m not sure yet of where it’s heading but I feel a massive change. Our oldest children are now teenagers and the youngest will be 9 tomorrow!
When they were born I started taking pictures of them and it became very much part of who I was to them. We had conversations about consent and my pictures etc but I wasn’t prepared for when one of my children reached the teen ages that they felt uncomfortable with the public-ness of my photographs. I think it’s really important that I acknowledge that it wasn’t always ok for me to show such raw images of them. This has changed what I choose to show in my images, and of course Who gets shown. Also, organically and as it’s supposed to be - my children don’t want to be around me as much, they have their friends and they’re sussing out their own paths and identities.
I’ve noticed that I seem to be taking a lot of pictures of my oldest son from behind, his shoulders and the back of his head; he’s so much taller than me now. I’m not sure why I’m repeating this image, but it does tend to be something I’ve noticed throughout my work, that I’ll repeat a pattern not understanding why until it reveals itself to me. I have a picture of him as a really little boy, from behind (but me looking down). Maybe there’s something about his giant-ness (to me) that makes me photograph him this way, also its quite maternal isn’t it - to watch your children go in to the world, it’s often like having a clamp on my throat, I miss him so much but I have to let him go.
When I’ve talked before about my own childhood it’s in the respect of growing up alongside my children now. I didn’t find things so happy growing up and it was quite a difficult time. So when I had children (fairly young) it was really hard, I struggled a lot with my own identity and this crippling fear that I was failing at everything. I found it really soothing to watch them experiencing new things and I sort of experienced them at the same time. I saw this thing -your tongue knows how everything feels - look around your room now and you’ll realise that it’s true. I think this is what motherhood has been for me, like a re-wiring.