bicycle built for three

HofmannBlog_001HofmannBlog_002HofmannBlog_003HofmannBlog_004HofmannBlog_005HofmannBlog_006HofmannBlog_007HofmannBlog_008HofmannBlog_009HofmannBlog_010HofmannBlog_011HofmannBlog_012HofmannBlog_013HofmannBlog_014HofmannBlog_015HofmannBlog_016HofmannBlog_017HofmannBlog_018HofmannBlog_019HofmannBlog_020HofmannBlog_021HofmannBlog_022HofmannBlog_023HofmannBlog_024HofmannBlog_025HofmannBlog_026HofmannBlog_027 Just when I thought it couldn't get much better than a session that included meeting good friends at my favorite park in my own neighborhood on a sunny September evening, out roll the bikes, one with an xtra-special xtracycle for their twins, and well right then and there my evening was made. Oh and we went for gelato afterwards, so yeah, this was I'd call a stellar sesh start to finish.

xo, PQ

ruby and carson

Ruby and Carson, in all their just-turned-five little-big kid glory :: Cathedral Park on a cloudy summer morning :: words of encouragement in chalk graffiti :: hydrangeas that required a little dead-heading :: a mama duck and her twin ducklings :: dancing the sillies out :: kissing Dad :: snuggling Mom :: loving it up on Grandma :: cracking jokes and making silly faces :: best job in the world.

xo, PQ

 

 

last of fall families

Alright so yes, I'm piling three photo sessions into one post again, and yes, there are a handful (or so) of fall family sessions that never made it onto the blog, and YES I'm probably going to blog some 2012 families in 2013, but I've got a supah Christmassy session to blog and before I do that I want to send the fall family sessions off with a big kiss. So here goes {smooooooooch}....

Fall you nearly kicked by bum, but dang you were fun! Until next year...
xo, PQ

peace and love.

I've been searching for a happy place since Friday. Actually that isn't quite true; I don't want or need to feel happy, I just want a break from the news, the response, the dark details, and all the heartache. I don't at all expect or desire to feel "happy," in fact I think it is important to allow ourselves to feel shattered right now. But I am feeling overwhelmed by the news and the noise surrounding it. I don't want to read any more accounts of how it went down, I just want a place to rest my eyes on something that gives me hope. I've been clicking around the internet hoping to find something to bring my heart a little peace, and then I realized, I can do that for people. Karissa I am thinking of you calling this your "happy place," and while we've already established that there just isn't any being happy right now, it is important to remember that there is hope. On Friday after the horrific news broke about Sandy Hook, I absorbed it, I sobbed appropriately, I took a hot shower, and then I turned off the news, closed down my Facebook page, and got to work on editing these photos that were due. It helped me to spend time with Jonah and his carefree child spirit. There is beauty to be found in these children of ours (ALL of ours) who are lucky enough to be blissfully unaware. While we are feeling so tremendously helpless, let's try to remember that we can do something. We can practice empathy, kindness, acceptance, and understanding, and we can raise people who will do the same.

sending you all peace and love,

posy

PS - want to DO something? I think Paper Hearts Across America is pretty a lovely idea.

chelsea

In August 2010 I received an email from Chelsea. We had met in a group for new moms at the hospital where our girls had been born just a few months apart; now they were turning three. We were in our mid-thirties, running our own businesses, living pretty similar lives. Except Chelsea was emailing because she had just been diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer; her treatment was set to begin the following week. Chelsea wanted to know if I could come over and photograph her family before the treatment began. I don't know what Chelsea was thinking at the time, but I know that after reading about her type of cancer and it's advanced stage, I felt like I was going to their home to capture images of her with Eva and Thomas so they would have them to hold in their hands when they didn't have her any longer. I remember it being the first time I felt the profound importance of documenting families together. I remember Chelsea looking directly through the camera and past me, to who knows where. I remember the contrast between the enormous sadness I saw in her and Thomas's eyes, and the sheer joy of their daughter, gorgeously unaware of the ugliness life can throw at you.

As we were wrapping up our session, a friend brought them a meal; they ate blueberries on their porch, as we said our goodbyes. When I got in my car I sobbed with overwhelming sadness for Chelsea, the barrel she was staring down, and what that meant as a mother. I felt scared for Thomas, heartbroken for Eva, and I felt guilty for being so damn grateful that it wasn't me. But I knew that this wasn't my battle, or my time to grieve, I had something I could do. I had never before felt so lucky to have this gift to give.

More than two years later, Chelsea is stable, living with no evidence of the disease in her body. I had followed a personal blog she kept, so I knew that she had come out on the other side of intensive medical treatment still standing, and ready to make some changes in her life to support her ongoing healing process. I was thrilled when she contacted me in August about photographing her family again; This time I was going to capture all THREE of them happy, and together, alive and well.

Chelsea Harper, MA, BC-DMT, NCC, RYT is a counselor, dance/movement therapist, and yoga teacher.  Her business Moving to Balance offers workshops and retreats for young cancer survivors. Diagnosed with Stage IV breast cancer at age 35, she is passionate about supporting young cancer survivors and their families to live well despite cancer.
xo, PQ

 

Update: Chelsea and another breast cancer survivor have teamed up and written a book for children who's mothers have been diagnosed with breast cancer. The book looks beautiful and fills a void in children's literature that sadly needs to be filled. But they need our help in getting a draft prepared to send to publishers. Please watch this video and consider a pledge to their Kickstarter campaign: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/461762311/the-storybook-project

i love them.

Every time I have tried to blog these photos over the last few weeks I began to feel overwhelmed, and promptly moved on to something else on my to-do list. I don't know how to explain it, other than I want to say all the right things, which blocks me from saying anything at all. It has something to do with the fact that I fuh-reak-ing love these guys. It also doesn't help that Ryan is really good with putting these things into words and I'm feeling the pressure to do the same for his family, even though I know he doesn't expect that. That's part of their awesomeness as a whole, they would never expect a love-gushing blog post, but I feel they are owed one. But instead of writing something eloquent and meaningful I'm here blathering on about nothing! Moving on!

Aili Wren is a 20-year-old in a 6-year-old's body. She is the smart, confident, precocious as all get out, and funny. And she refers to me as "Posy Quarterman" when she sees me in public, which I can't help but love. Seriously, when you hear a little girl shout "MOM! Posy Quarterman is here!" well, you just go a little squishy inside (well, if your name is Posy Quarterman you do.)

William is Mr. Amazing. His giant blues eyes are always sparkling, and there's usually a giant smile or tongue sticking out, to go with. His spirit is enormous and it shines almost as much as the princess dresses he prefers to wear. I have to resist the urge to scoop him up and eat him just about every time I see him.

And then there's their parents. Only spectacularly awesome people could create children such as these. And they are spectacularly awesome. Ryan and Lorelei are some of those rare people who just are good people. Although it appears effortless on their part, I know that it takes a lot of work, drive, focus, and effort, but I'm also confident that is is just who they are. I can't imagine they could be any other way. And somehow, whenever I need some kind of confidence boost, or kick in the ass, even when I don't realize that's what I need, a message will appear in my inbox from Ryan feeding me exactly what I needed to hear. A quote. A poem. Gratitude. Encouragement. It's pretty freaking cool to have such freaking cool people in my corner. All that stuff I said yesterday about feeling lucky getting to document peoples histories, well I feel especially so doing it for these guys.

And that's all I've got.

xo, PQ

say "kimchi!"

You might remember Juno from back in May, when she made her shy entrance into Portland. She wasn't too crazy about me or my camera that day. Though I wasn't at all surprised by that, I'll be honest, I was a tad nervous about our session a few weeks ago. Turns out, Juno loves the camera. And though I'll never tell a kid to "say cheese," in Korea they say "say kimchi!" and the result, or at least on this little fireball, is a ridiculously cute expression, one among the many silly faces this kiddo makes. Juno had only been home with her family for a a little over five weeks when we got together, but you wouldn't know it by the way she was with them, and them with her, particularly big brother Max, who is kind, and patient, and so loving with her. So yeah, nothing to worry about, nothing at all. Yay for happy families!