Shadow Places – One
For this commission, Amy has created a series of photographic self-portraits titled Shadow Places and accompanying creative writing/spoken text about living with complex post traumatic stress disorder.
A portrait oriented image of the interior of a 1960s social housing ﬂat. The ﬂoor is coloured laminate wood eﬀect and the wall to the left and the ceiling are magnolia coloured. In the background of the image are two clear square windows with rectangular textured glass under each one. The four windows take up the whole space between ceiling and ﬂoor. There are trees in the distance. To the left of the image is a wooden standard lamp with a traditional looking fringed lampshade, and on the ﬂoor to the right of the lamp (in the corner of the room) is a big wooden framed 1960s television. Central/right of the image is a white woman with short wavy red hair in a 1950s pink and black lace ballgown sitting in a turquoise and gold edged vintage wicker chair. She has an old fashioned walking stick, upright and resting on the inside of her left wrist, hand resting over the handle. Her arm is bare. Her body is facing the television but her head is looking down and to the left, so her profile is just visible behind the wave of her hair. There is an old fashioned small suitcase next to her, on the left. The lighting is bright, and there is a slight dark shadow in the top and bottom right of the image.
Empty pear crates poking splinters into my socks, packed, neatly. Packed in.
I wonder if some of us are always waiting.
I wonder how long I can do this balancing act.
But I shine, and people see my smile, and bask in me.
So I hold it all. Packed in.
I can’t let my deep shuddering breath into my soft belly, into my body that feels like a stranger.
It’s not safe and my net is too full of holes.
And now, again, the lens refocuses and we are somewhere new, a different timeline.
And here I am.
Holding it all.
Slowly becoming quieter and more still as my rushing waters overflow.